10 of 2022`

Newsletter No 10 / 18 March 2022                                 


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Retail trade sales surge in January

By Thuletho Zwane

The year-on-year rise was largely driven by retailers in food and beverages as well as retailers specialising in clothing and textiles

SA retail trade sales started 2022 on a positive note recording an annual increase well above market estimates, Stats SA said on Wednesday.

This was the fifth straight month of growth in retail activity and at the fastest pace since last June.

Annual retail trade sales increased by 7.7% in January compared with the same month in 2021, up from an upwardly revised 3.2% rise in the previous month and above market estimates of a 4.9% gain.

This year-on-year rise was largely driven by retailers in food and beverages as well as retailers specialising in clothing and textiles.

Sales in food and beverages jumped a significant 70.9%, contributing 3,5 percentage points while textiles, clothing, footwear and leather goods recorded growth of 17.4% and contributed 3.0 percentage points.

Other retailers that registered positive year on year gains in January were general dealers, retailers in household goods and retailers classified in the miscellaneous category referred to as all other retailers. This category includes online stores and stores specialising in jewellery, stationery and sports goods.

Not all retailers posted positive results in January.

The hardware, paint and glass, as well as the pharmaceuticals, medical goods and cosmetics categories both registered an annual decline in sales.

Data shows that the hardware, paint retail trade sales category fell 7.3% year on year, contributing negative growth of 0.6 percentage point.

On a monthly basis, retail trade increased 1.5% in January, after an upwardly revised 1.7% rise in December and 1.7% in November.

FNB economist Thando Sithole said less restrictive lockdown measures at the time — December 2021 — increased consumer mobility and also improved credit uptake.

Sithole said the extension of the social relief grants, and the relatively strong recovery of disposable income all supported shopping activity in November and December.

For three months annual comparison movement (November 2021, December 2021 and January 2022 compared to November 2020, December 2020 and January 2021), retail trade sales increased 4.2% in the three months ended January 2022 compared with the same period in 2021.

The main contributors over the three months (annual comparison) are textiles, clothing, footwear and leather goods retailers, rising 14.6% and contributing 2.7 percentage points to growth, as well as retailers in food, beverages and tobacco in specialised stores, which rose 15.1% and contributed one percentage point1.0% of a percentage point to growth.

In the three months ended January 2022 – that is November 2021, December 2021 and January 2022 – Stats SA said retail trade sales increased by 4,3% compared with the previous three months.

Sithole said even though overall retail trade sales showed positive growth for the period under review, FNB was concerned about the intensifying consumer headwinds that should weigh on longer term shopping activity. These include higher living costs, still depressed consumer sentiment, a stagnant labour market and the less supportive interest-rate environment,” he said. BL

Clothing maker starts up East Africa’s largest operational rooftop solar plant

By Marleny Arnoldi

Kenya-based apparel manufacturer United Aryan has officially switched to using green power for manufacturing and inaugurated its new rooftop solar plant.

The 1.8 MW plant is the largest operational rooftop solar facility in East Africa.

The rooftop plant comprises of 3 334 solar panels and has generation capacity of 2.3 GWh/y. It will reduce the operation’s carbon emissions by 33 100 t/y.

Solarise Africa, which provided the full-service commercial solution to finance the project, says United Aryan, which manufactures woven and knit garments mostly for export to the US and European markets, will reduce its electricity costs by about 72% from the first month and will save more than $5-million over the life of the plant.

The engineering, procurement and construction were managed by Premier Solar Solutions – a Kenya-based subsidiary of Starsight Premier Energy Group.   EN

Launch of SARS multilingual tax terminology publication

Tshwane, 17 March 2022 – The Commissioner of the South African Revenue Service (SARS) Mr Edward Kieswetter has committed the organisation to promoting the use of historically marginalised official languages in the tax and customs environment.

He was speaking at the launch of the SARS multilingual tax terminology publication which contains 450 terms in our all official languages (English already existing), namely Sesotho, Setswana, Sepedi, Tshivenḓa, Xitsonga, IsiNdebele, Siswati, IsiZulu, IsiXhosa and Afrikaans. This list covers the wide spectrum of the financial terminology, such as tax, wills, and general financial business practices.

Commissioner Kieswetter, set the scene by quoting the Constitution: “The preamble of the Constitution of South Africa reminded the audience about the impact of language. We, the people of South Africa, Recognise the injustices of our past; Honour those who suffered for justice and freedom in our land; Respect those who have worked to build and develop our country; and Believe that South Africa belongs to all who live in it, united in our diversity”.

He further said that “through this initiative SARS is striving to provide greater clarity and certainty to its taxpayers in all 11 official languages that would promote social justice and fundamental human rights”.

Tata Madiba (President Nelson Mandela) himself reminded us of the power of language when he said, “If you talk to a man in a language he understands, that goes to his head. If you talk to a man in his own language, that touches their heart.”

For centuries language in our country has always been an issue of major public interest and national policy. Some languages are on the verge of extinction because its speakers were decimated or assimilated into other cultures. Since 1994, government has been addressing this issue as language can build bridges between individuals, between communities, and in our case, can build trust and improve our service to taxpayers and traders.

The Use of Official Languages Act (UOLA)   was signed into law in 2013. The Act provides for the regulation and monitoring of the use of official languages by national government for government purposes. It further requires the adoption of a language policy and the establishment of a language unit for national departments, national public entities and national public enterprises.

SARS adopted such a language policy, gazetted on 23 November 2015, and is presently implementing the policy. The SARS Language Services Unit was established, with a mandate is to make a concerted effort to develop the previously marginalised languages. It also supports the Taxpayer and Traders Education initiatives as it goes to communities to educate taxpayers in their own language about the importance of tax compliance.

This year is the 25th anniversary of SARS, a major and joyous milestone, established with the mandate to collect all revenues due, to ensure optimal compliance with tax and customs legislation and providing a customs service that protects our borders and facilitates legitimate trade.

Contributing to further our efforts the multilingual tax terminology publication is not only our gift to the taxpayers, traders and the citizens of South Africa, whose mother-tongue is not necessarily English but to our staff who interact with our taxpayers and ensures that they do so using the correct terms as approved by the Pan South African Language Board (PanSALB). We acknowledge and commend this progressive piece of work done by more than 140 contributors in realising this milestone. We acknowledge the efforts of this diverse team and convey our heartfelt appreciation and gratitude to the Department of Sport, Arts and Culture (DAC) and the Pan South African Language Board (PanSALB) and our SARS team

Mr Kieswetter said: “The work we do at SARS touches the lives of all citizens, especially the poor and vulnerable, through the revenue we collect which enables government to provide basic services such as social grants, education and health care. All South Africans must understand this vital role that SARS plays. There is no better way to create this understanding than by speaking to our compatriots in their own language so that our work touches their hearts, as stated by Madiba”.

ou can find our newly published SARS Mutlilingual Terminology Publication – Volume 1 on our SARS website. See the SARS Multilingual Terminology list here.

For more information contact SarsMedia@sars.gov.za

HomeChoice final results December 2021

Revenue for the year increased by 4.8% to R3.4 billion (2020: R3.3 billion) whilst operating profit dropped 2.6% to R263 million (2020: R270 million). In addition, profit and total comprehensive income for the period attributable to owners of the parent went up 1.8% to R170 million (2020: R167 million) and headline earnings per share grew 24% to 203.5 cents per share (2020: 164.2 cents per share).


Notice is hereby given that the board of directors has declared a final gross cash dividend of 20.00 cents (16.00 cents net of dividend withholding tax) per ordinary share for the twelve months ended 31 December 2021. The dividend has been declared from income reserves. HIL is registered in Mauritius and the dividend is classified as a foreign dividend. Withholding tax of 20% will be applicable to all South African shareholders who are not exempt.

Company outlook

The group is well positioned for future growth, with a clear, diversified digital consumer growth strategy.

Together with data-rich customer insights, strategic product progression to drive customer acquisition, a digital mindset that delivers cost-efficiencies and top-line growth, and an obsessive focus on customers, the group is fully funded to support the growth ambitions of the board.

HomeChoice Retail will strengthen its focus on implementing the turnaround plan with successful inroads already achieved in 2021.
Weaver Fintech will take advantage of market share opportunities to progress product offerings across payments, lending and insurance and to broaden the offers to merchants.

Pick n Pay – retirement of company secretary

Shareholders are advised that Debra Muller will be retiring as Company Secretary of the Pick n Pay Group with effect from 31 July 2022. The board has appointed Penny Gerber to take over as Company Secretary with effect from Debra’s retirement.

The most talked about Oscars dresses of all time

Edy Williams, 2000

The consistently-daring actress was back at it again in what can only be described as a figure skater’s ensemble gone wrong

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