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Shipping and Logistics
Market woes continue as ships go under the hammer

The South African courts witnessed a flurry of judicial ship sales in the first half of 2015.

It began with the auction in Durban of the Turkish flagged and owned bulk carrier Tarik 3 in early February 2015, followed by the Iskandar (bulk carrier), Altai (crude oil carrier), Mar Sik Ryong (forest product carrier) and Glory Morning (bulk carrier). In July 2015 the Durban High Court ordered the judicial sale of the Aetos (bulk carrier), which should take place within six weeks.

Obama Boost for Africa

The relatively slow pace of merger and acquisition activity in Africa was jump-started by last monthís visit of American president Barack Obama during which he co-hosted the 6th Global Entrepreneurship Summit in Nairobi. Paras Shah, Nairobi partner at Coulson Harney, part of the Bowman Gilfillan Africa Group, says his visit ignited euphoria in both local and international investors.

Renewable energy projects offer investors various options

The renewable energy programme run by the Department of Energy has now proceeded through several rounds, including the recent announcement of preferred bidders for round four and the opening of the bid window for round five.

Employment Law
Non-permanent employees afforded greater protection

The stricter regulation of atypical forms of employment were introduced with the Labour Relations Act (LRA) amendments on 1 January 2015 to include a number of provisions specifically aimed at giving labour-brocking employees, employees employed on fixed-term contacts, and part-time employees greater protection.

Security for costs affirmed

Local companies which institute litigation proceedings which are vexatious or reckless or amount to an abuse can still be liable to furnish security for the defendantís legal costs, despite the legislatureís omission of this provision from the Companies Act, 2008. This is the view taken by the Supreme Court of Appeal in its recent judgement in the Boost Sports Africa v The South African Breweries case.

General News
IFLR1000ís Energy and Infrastructure results announced

IFLR1000′s recent research into the energy and infrastructure markets shows Bowman Gilfillan Africa Group (BGAG) being highly ranked across Africa reaffirming the groupís position as a leading pan-African legal services provider to corporates, financial institutions and the public sector across Africa.

General News
Going Legal

Itís a sign of the times that legal services firms are booming while the rest of the economy limps along.

Representatives of financial service providers must be honest and have integrity or face being disbarred industry-wide

On 1 June 2015 the Supreme Court of Appeal (SCA) delivered a judgment in the Financial Services Board vs PGE Barthram and Discovery Life Limited case, emphasizing that representatives of financial services providers (Reps) must be honest and people of integrity or face being disbarred from ever working in the financial services industry. With its decision, the SCA has enhanced the protection of the investing public from dealing with Reps who are dishonest and lack integrity.

Keeping the competition strong

Many African countries recognise that rigorous competition law regimes are considered a great contributor to providing incentives to companies to compete on prices, improve the quality of their products and become more innovative, in order to retain or, better still, increase their market share.

SA must pursue US free-trade deal

The US Senateís recent passing of a bill extending the African Growth and Opportunity Act (Agoa) for 10 years with SA indicates that this unilateral preference scheme enjoys sufficient support in the US.

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