COMPANY NEWS IN BRIEF

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China's President Xi meets US executives

REUTERS

China's President Xi Jinping met with American business leaders at the Great Hall of the People in Beijing on Wednesday, as the government tries to woo foreign investors back into the country and international firms seek reassurance over new regulations.

Beijing wants to boost growth this year in the world's second largest economy, after foreign direct investment into China shrank 8% in 2023 as investor concern grew over an anti-espionage law, exit bans and raids on consultancies and due diligence firms.

President Xi's increasing focus on national security has left many companies uncertain where they might step over the line, even as Chinese leaders make public overtures towards overseas investors.

"The history of China-U.S. relations is a history of friendly exchanges between our two peoples," Xi said, according to state media, while calling on the two countries to "seek common ground and build more consensus."

Racial tensions cost Germany Inc. skilled foreign labour

REUTERS

Manager Joerg Engelmann says he has pulled out all the stops to attract skilled foreign workers to his chemical engineering company in Chemnitz, east Germany. But once they arrived, the racial slurs and exclusion they experienced in the town have driven some of them away.

His firm is one of five German medium-sized companies that told Reuters their foreign staff recently moved on or switched locations due to xenophobia, even as Europe's biggest economy suffers a shortage of skilled labour.

Many large companies in Germany and the Netherlands have expressed concern about the difficulty of hiring due to anti-immigrant sentiment. Some employers go a step further, saying they are actually losing staff because of it.

CAC Engineering GmbH, the family-owned company Engelmann runs, has lost around five of its 40 foreign employees over the past 12 months because of discrimination, he told Reuters. The company declined to make its former staff available to Reuters.

Coal power not going away anytime soon — Mantashe

BLOOMBERG

South Africa’s energy minister said expecting a rapid transition from its dependence on coal-fired power generation to clean energy would be “very wrong,” and the nation will need to use the fossil fuel for longer to address an electricity shortage.

Gwede Mantashe’s reiteration of his view that coal will continue to play a vital role in South Africa’s energy mix comes as wealthy nations look for ways to invest in technologies that help decarbonise the country.

Mantashe said clean energy technologies that rely on intermittent factors like sunshine or wind are less reliable than coal plants that are able to run 24 hours a day.

“This belief that you can leave coal and move to renewables: there’s a technical mistake, very wrong, it will never work,” he said in an interview at Bloomberg’s offices in Johannesburg.

Florida bans social media for kids under 14

BLOOMBERG

Florida Governor Ron DeSantis signed a bill prohibiting minors under 14 from having social media accounts, following similar efforts in other states that have been challenged in court.

The Florida law also requires parental permission for 14- and 15-year-olds to have accounts at companies such as Meta Platforms Inc. and TikTok Inc.

While older kids face no restrictions, the legislation forces all social media users in the state to submit identification documents to verify their ages.

“Social media harms children in a variety of ways,” DeSantis said in a statement Monday, adding that the measure, known as House Bill 3, “gives parents a greater ability to protect their children.”

The Florida legislation is part of a broader effort by some states to clamp down on social media firms amid rising concern over their impact on youth mental health and their role in spreading sexually explicit content.

States such as Arkansas and Ohio have enacted laws requiring minors to secure parental approval for social media accounts. But those measures have faced legal challenges, as has a children’s digital privacy law in California.

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Premier League: Chelsea 6 vs 0 Everton | Arsenal 0 vs 2 Aston Villa | West Ham 0 vs 2 Fulham | Liverpool 0 vs 1 Crystal Palace LaLiga: Osasuna 0 vs 1 Valencia | Real Sociedad 2 vs 2 Almería | Athletic Club 1 vs 1 Villarreal | Granada 2 vs 0 Deportivo Alaves | Las Palmas 0 vs 2 Sevilla SerieA: Atalanta 2 vs 2 Hellas Verona | Fiorentina 1 vs 1 Genoa | Inter Milan 2 vs 2 Cagliari | Udinese 1 vs 1 AS Roma | Sassuolo 3 vs 3 AC Milan | Napoli 2 vs 2 Frosinone European Championships Qualifying: Southampton 3 vs 0 Preston North End English Championship: Southampton 3 vs 0 Preston North End Katima Mulilo: 18° | 34° Rundu: 19° | 34° Eenhana: 21° | 36° Oshakati: 23° | 35° Ruacana: 24° | 37° Tsumeb: 20° | 33° Otjiwarongo: 18° | 32° Omaruru: 18° | 34° Windhoek: 17° | 30° Gobabis: 17° | 31° Henties Bay: 15° | 21° Wind speed: 18km/h, Wind direction: S, Low tide: 05:58, High tide: 12:09, Low Tide: 18:01, High tide: 00:35 Swakopmund: 15° | 17° Wind speed: 19km/h, Wind direction: SW, Low tide: 05:56, High tide: 12:07, Low Tide: 17:59, High tide: 00:33 Walvis Bay: 16° | 24° Wind speed: 24km/h, Wind direction: SW, Low tide: 05:56, High tide: 12:06, Low Tide: 17:59, High tide: 00:32 Rehoboth: 17° | 32° Mariental: 18° | 33° Keetmanshoop: 19° | 33° Aranos: 18° | 32° Lüderitz: 15° | 29° Ariamsvlei: 19° | 33° Oranjemund: 13° | 23° Luanda: 26° | 29° Gaborone: 14° | 27° Lubumbashi: 16° | 24° Mbabane: 13° | 26° Maseru: 11° | 22° Antananarivo: 12° | 23° Lilongwe: 16° | 25° Maputo: 18° | 28° Windhoek: 17° | 30° Cape Town: 16° | 21° Durban: 18° | 26° Johannesburg: 13° | 24° Dar es Salaam: 23° | 30° Lusaka: 16° | 26° Harare: 14° | 28° Currency: GBP to NAD 23.58 | EUR to NAD 20.15 | CNY to NAD 2.62 | USD to NAD 18.94 | DZD to NAD 0.14 | AOA to NAD 0.02 | BWP to NAD 1.33 | EGP to NAD 0.38 | KES to NAD 0.14 | NGN to NAD 0.02 | ZMW to NAD 0.75 | ZWL to NAD 0.04 | BRL to NAD 3.62 | RUB to NAD 0.2 | INR to NAD 0.23 | USD to DZD 134.54 | USD to AOA 832.82 | USD to BWP 13.85 | USD to EGP 48.73 | USD to KES 131.48 | USD to NGN 1138.13 | USD to ZAR 18.94 | USD to ZMW 25.2 | USD to ZWL 321 | Stock Exchange: JSE All Share Index 72999.63 Down -2.04% | Namibian Stock Exchange (NSX) Overall Index 1520.5 Down -2.01% | Casablanca Stock Exchange (CSE) MASI 13362.33 Down -0.08% | Egyptian Exchange (EGX) 30 Index 29400.84 Down -0.73% | Botswana Stock Exchange (BSE) DCI Same 0 | NSX: MTC 7.75 SAME | Anirep 8.99 SAME | Capricorn Investment group 17.34 SAME | FirstRand Namibia Ltd 49 DOWN 0.50% | Letshego Holdings (Namibia) Ltd 4.1 UP 2.50% | Namibia Asset Management Ltd 0.7 SAME | Namibia Breweries Ltd 31.49 UP 0.03% | Nictus Holdings - Nam 2.22 SAME | Oryx Properties Ltd 12.1 UP 1.70% | Paratus Namibia Holdings 11.99 SAME | SBN Holdings 8.45 SAME | Trustco Group Holdings Ltd 0.48 SAME | B2Gold Corporation 47.34 DOWN 1.50% | Local Index closed 677.62 UP 0.12% | Overall Index closed 1534.6 DOWN 0.05% | Osino Resources Corp 19.47 DOWN 2.41% | Commodities: Gold US$ 2 392.10/OZ UP +0.39% | Copper US$ 4.30/lb UP +0.26% | Zinc US$ 2 800.60/T UP 1.08% | Brent Crude Oil US$ 89.62/BBP DOWN -0.0088 | Platinum US$ 955.27/OZ DOWN -0.0047 Sport results: Premier League: Chelsea 6 vs 0 Everton | Arsenal 0 vs 2 Aston Villa | West Ham 0 vs 2 Fulham | Liverpool 0 vs 1 Crystal Palace LaLiga: Osasuna 0 vs 1 Valencia | Real Sociedad 2 vs 2 Almería | Athletic Club 1 vs 1 Villarreal | Granada 2 vs 0 Deportivo Alaves | Las Palmas 0 vs 2 Sevilla SerieA: Atalanta 2 vs 2 Hellas Verona | Fiorentina 1 vs 1 Genoa | Inter Milan 2 vs 2 Cagliari | Udinese 1 vs 1 AS Roma | Sassuolo 3 vs 3 AC Milan | Napoli 2 vs 2 Frosinone European Championships Qualifying: Southampton 3 vs 0 Preston North End English Championship: Southampton 3 vs 0 Preston North End Weather: Katima Mulilo: 18° | 34° Rundu: 19° | 34° Eenhana: 21° | 36° Oshakati: 23° | 35° Ruacana: 24° | 37° Tsumeb: 20° | 33° Otjiwarongo: 18° | 32° Omaruru: 18° | 34° Windhoek: 17° | 30° Gobabis: 17° | 31° Henties Bay: 15° | 21° Wind speed: 18km/h, Wind direction: S, Low tide: 05:58, High tide: 12:09, Low Tide: 18:01, High tide: 00:35 Swakopmund: 15° | 17° Wind speed: 19km/h, Wind direction: SW, Low tide: 05:56, High tide: 12:07, Low Tide: 17:59, High tide: 00:33 Walvis Bay: 16° | 24° Wind speed: 24km/h, Wind direction: SW, Low tide: 05:56, High tide: 12:06, Low Tide: 17:59, High tide: 00:32 Rehoboth: 17° | 32° Mariental: 18° | 33° Keetmanshoop: 19° | 33° Aranos: 18° | 32° Lüderitz: 15° | 29° Ariamsvlei: 19° | 33° Oranjemund: 13° | 23° Luanda: 26° | 29° Gaborone: 14° | 27° Lubumbashi: 16° | 24° Mbabane: 13° | 26° Maseru: 11° | 22° Antananarivo: 12° | 23° Lilongwe: 16° | 25° Maputo: 18° | 28° Windhoek: 17° | 30° Cape Town: 16° | 21° Durban: 18° | 26° Johannesburg: 13° | 24° Dar es Salaam: 23° | 30° Lusaka: 16° | 26° Harare: 14° | 28° Economic Indicators: Currency: GBP to NAD 23.58 | EUR to NAD 20.15 | CNY to NAD 2.62 | USD to NAD 18.94 | DZD to NAD 0.14 | AOA to NAD 0.02 | BWP to NAD 1.33 | EGP to NAD 0.38 | KES to NAD 0.14 | NGN to NAD 0.02 | ZMW to NAD 0.75 | ZWL to NAD 0.04 | BRL to NAD 3.62 | RUB to NAD 0.2 | INR to NAD 0.23 | USD to DZD 134.54 | USD to AOA 832.82 | USD to BWP 13.85 | USD to EGP 48.73 | USD to KES 131.48 | USD to NGN 1138.13 | USD to ZAR 18.94 | USD to ZMW 25.2 | USD to ZWL 321 | Stock Exchange: JSE All Share Index 72999.63 Down -2.04% | Namibian Stock Exchange (NSX) Overall Index 1520.5 Down -2.01% | Casablanca Stock Exchange (CSE) MASI 13362.33 Down -0.08% | Egyptian Exchange (EGX) 30 Index 29400.84 Down -0.73% | Botswana Stock Exchange (BSE) DCI Same 0 | NSX: MTC 7.75 SAME | Anirep 8.99 SAME | Capricorn Investment group 17.34 SAME | FirstRand Namibia Ltd 49 DOWN 0.50% | Letshego Holdings (Namibia) Ltd 4.1 UP 2.50% | Namibia Asset Management Ltd 0.7 SAME | Namibia Breweries Ltd 31.49 UP 0.03% | Nictus Holdings - Nam 2.22 SAME | Oryx Properties Ltd 12.1 UP 1.70% | Paratus Namibia Holdings 11.99 SAME | SBN Holdings 8.45 SAME | Trustco Group Holdings Ltd 0.48 SAME | B2Gold Corporation 47.34 DOWN 1.50% | Local Index closed 677.62 UP 0.12% | Overall Index closed 1534.6 DOWN 0.05% | Osino Resources Corp 19.47 DOWN 2.41% | Commodities: Gold US$ 2 392.10/OZ UP +0.39% | Copper US$ 4.30/lb UP +0.26% | Zinc US$ 2 800.60/T UP 1.08% | Brent Crude Oil US$ 89.62/BBP DOWN -0.0088 | Platinum US$ 955.27/OZ DOWN -0.0047