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Panama-flagged ship with 17 sailors reportedly missing.

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A Panama-flagged chemical tanker Pantelena is reported missing since August 14, 2018, when all contact with the ship was lost.

According to report the tanker was last reported to be sailing with 17 Georgian sailors on board in the Gulf of Guinea, a known piracy hotspot.



The Ministry of Foreign Affairs of Georgia said that an investigation into the incident was underway in cooperation with the owner of the ship, Lotus Shipping from Greece, the Panama Ship Registry and other relevant authorities, including military forces such as the United Kingdom Maritime Trade Operations .

Based on the ministry’s statement, the 2006-built ship was transporting oil when it was last contacted.

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The vessel’s latest AIS data shows it was headed from Ownedo, Gabon to Libreville, Gabon.

According to the International Maritime Bureau, all crew kidnappings recorded this year happened in the Gulf of Guinea.

Six separate incidents have been reported in 2018, but the true number of incidents in the Gulf is believed to be “significantly higher” than what is reported.

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President Ramaphosa to Sign South African Competition Amendment Bill Into Law

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South African President Cyril Ramaphosa will sign into law today the Competition Amendment Bill, which will strengthen regulations against anti-competitive behaviour in industrial markets.



The bill, which was approved by the National Assembly in October 2018 and endorsed by the National Council of Provinces in December 2018, is a step in the right direction for SMEs, economic inclusion and it opens up the economy to fresh investment and innovation.

It also provides a clear mandate to the competition authorities to address economic concentration in a balanced manner and to promote economic transformation, the Presidency said on Monday.

Additionally, the amended legislation seeks to combat concentration and economic exclusion as core challenges that contribute to slower and less dynamic growth, lower employment and greater inequalities, as well as socio-political conflict.

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The Presidency said this will enable a more effective approach to concentration, with a focus on improving outcomes for small and black-owned business, and strengthen the institutions involved in managing competition policy and law.

The signing ceremony will take place this afternoon at the Tuynhuys Chambers in Parliament. Economic Development Minister Ebrahim Patel, who campaigned fiercely for the bill’s codification, will join the ceremony along with a group of stakeholders.

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Manufacturing Output Growth Slows Again in South Africa

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The preliminary data from Statistics South Africa has showed the rate at which South Africa manufacturing output slowed twice again within the month of December.




Negative contributions came from petroleum, chemicals, rubber and plastic products, iron and steel, non-ferrous metal products, metal products and machinery industries to make outputs edged up a non-adjusted 0.1% year-on-year in December following a 1.3% increase in November and a 3.0% gain in October

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As against a drastic output growth in the prior month; 0.7% following a 0.4% rise in November

Meanwhile motor vehicles, parts and other transport equipment, food and beverages, glass and non-metallic mineral products made the biggest positive contributions in December.

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