Quarter 1 2022


South Africa's innovation economy is beginning to show signs of maturity, with more corporate participation and international investors backing South African startups. Digital solutions are allowing for a convergence of industries, with telecom players operating in the FinTech space, and retailers introducing logistic solutions. Angel investing is a key component of any functional startup ecosystem, and it's an opportunity for individuals to participate in the innovation economy while remaining in their day jobs.

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Surge in opportunity after the lifting of the licensing threshold for embedded generation Spotlight on energy law March 2022

2021 will probably go on record as one of the worst years for loadshedding ever experienced in South Africa. The uncertainty around electricity supply, compounded by drastic increases in the price of electricity, have had a depressing effect on the economy. Mining has been one of the hardest hit sectors and, in some instances, mines and smelters have opted not to operate at capacity because of the erratic supply and exorbitant cost of electricity.

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The transition to a green economy will continue to drive transactional activity in 2022 Spotlight on energy law March 2022

When the world initially shut down in early 2020, in response to the COVID-19 pandemic, many thought it would be for a short period. But as the lock downs and other measures remained in place, this had a dramatic impact on world economies, including Africa's, and showed the stark reality of just how fragile these economies were. Looking back, those economies that were more diverse and relied to a large extent on mining and natural resources were more resilient and were able to recover quicker than economies that did not have economic diversity which included mining and natural resources.

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Offshore exploration: a cautionary tale? Spotlight on energy law March 2022

It is well known that oil and gas are often termed the "lifeblood of industrialised countries" and are still primary sources of non-renewable energy used to drive industrialisation and socio-economic development. Accessibility to the planet's limited oil and gas resources, and to an appropriate energy mix, underpins an industrialised and developing country's energy independence, vulnerability and security, and its positioning on the world stage.

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High Noon on the Mpumalanga Highveld Spotlight on energy law March 2022

A possible standoff looms between wind and coal prospectors

The existing electricity transmission and distribution networks of the traditional wind rich provinces of the Western, Eastern and Northern Capes have all but been taken up by operational and soon-to-be built wind energy facilities.

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Energy crisis and the economy Spotlight on energy law March 2022

Reasons to celebrate

The media reports during the first month of 2022 were, surprisingly, speckled with sporadic positive news stories, a very rare occurrence given the long gloomy period that South Africans (and other populations worldwide) have lived under since the outbreak of the COVID pandemic.

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Energy exploration: the duty to consult meaningfully with traditional communities Spotlight on energy law March 2022

Exploring the ocean in search of nature's precious elements is an activity that has been ongoing for many decades and is expected to increase in the near future. Marine seismic surveys are the most important tool available to the petroleum industry for mapping potential oil and gas deposits beneath the seabed.

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PPPs – the answer to South Africa’s energy challenges? Spotlight on energy law March 2022

Following the Climate Change Conference that took place in Glasgow in November 2021, the South African government announced that various foreign governments had offered the country an amount of US$8.5 billion (around R131 billion) to help South Africa transition from coal to clean energy. While a significant proportion of this amount is to be used for Eskom's transitioning plans, funding will also be allocated towards the development of new sectors generating or relying on "clean energy", such as electric vehicles and development of green hydrogen plants. Following this, the Minister of Mineral Resources and Energy published a "Gas Master Plan base case report" for public comment. The report envisages the exploitation of both onshore and offshore gas deposits as a prime source of energy for South Africa.

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National News National News March 2022

Andersen (South Africa)

Appointments: Director Andrew Wellsted has been appointed as a Senior Tax Consultant and Director. Milton Osborn has been appointed a Senior Consultant Funds and Director.

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