However, it added that “due to the challenging environment in certain industrial sectors”, it was obliged to push back its previously announced profitability targets for the forwarder by two to three years, to 2023/2024.In order to improve its heavily leveraged balance sheet, CMA CGM said it planned to raise $2bn from the sale of container terminals and the sale and leaseback of some ships.It intends to sell 10 terminals for $968m to Terminal Link, a joint venture with China Merchants in which it holds a 51% stake. Terminal Link will finance the purchase through “a capital increase of $468m subscribed by China Merchants” and a loan from China Merchants, “that in eight years will be converted into a capital increase subscribed by CMA CGM”.The transaction is subject to antitrust and other regulatory approvals, but CMA CGM expects it to close in the spring.CMA CGM said it would raise a further $860m from the sale and leaseback of vessels, but it did not specify the ships involved or the contracting parties.One broker The Loadstar contacted today said he had heard rumours about the deal, which he said would “almost certainly” increase the carrier’s ship operating costs.“A lot will depend on what they have agreed on with the charter rates and how long the fixed price is valid for,” he said. “The market is quite strong at the moment so my guess is that could be paying top dollar for the daily hire.“OOCL did this a few years back when it was cash-strapped and it cost them a lot of money,” he said.CMA CGM is also hoping to raise some $90m from the sale of a logistics platform in India and a further $100m from customer receivables, a form of invoice factoring, relating to CEVA customers.CMA CGM chief financial officer Michel Sirat said the company expected market conditions to be “slightly better next year” and suggested the IMO 2020 low-sulphur regulations would restrict supply and support higher freight rates.He said the carrier would look to pass on to shippers around $150-$200 per container to cover the extra cost of having to buy low-sulphur fuel.On the subject of the asset sales, Mr Sirat said no other divestments were planned in the short-term.“We have a lot of assets and we will use them fully,” he said. CMA CGM posted a $45m net profit for the third quarter, reducing the French transport and logistics group’s nine-month loss to $107m.The number of containers carried in Q3 rose by an above-market par 5.1% on the same quarter of 2018, to 5.5m teu, which it attributed mainly to growth from its shortsea business, including the integration of Containerships.However, excluding CEVA Logistics revenue, turnover fell 3%, to $5.88bn, as freight rates came under pressure.The forwarding arm continued to operate in the red, and CMA CGM said: “The group remains firmly committed to returning CEVA Logistics to a sustainable and structural profitability, thanks to the wide variety of measures and investments undertaken since the acquisition closed.” CMA CGM’s tower, and Ceva’s new home Photo: Christian Richters/ Zaha Hadid By Mike Wackett 25/11/2019
The NBA Finals MVP made things more difficult after halftime on Davis, who also had 12 rebounds for the Pelicans while having his way with the Warriors’ defense from the start.The Pelicans beat the Warriors for the first time since April 7, 2015, in New Orleans, and at Oracle Arena for the first time since April 24, 2012.“I just thought we played about as perfect as you have to play to beat them,” Pelicans coach Alvin Gentry said. “They’re just such a great team. They just keep coming at you. We were never comfortable.”Durant also committed a costly late turnover that led to E’Twaun Moore’s pullup jumper with 23.5 seconds left. KD lost the ball for another key steal less than a minute earlier but immediately got a rebound on the other end that led to Andre Iguodala’s dunk on the other end to get Golden State to 121-119 with 1:01 left.Quinn Cook, who has been an admirable fill-in for the injured Stephen Curry after his promotion from the G League, added 21 points with five 3-pointers in the Warriors’ final regular-season home game.This was primarily the KD and Davis show.Davis shot 13 for 24, while Nikola Mirotic made four quick 3-pointers and six in all on the way to 28 points. Jrue Holiday scored 25 and Rajon Rondo dished out 17 assists.Durant tied the game on a layup just before halftime but Davis scored again to give him 19 points on 9-for-14 shooting in the first half. New Orleans led 67-65 after sizzling shooting by both teams – 59.6 by the Pelicans to 57.4 for Golden State and seven 3-pointers apiece.Draymond Green just missed a triple-double for the Warriors, finishing with 11 points, 10 rebounds and nine assists. He had seven of Golden State’s 17 turnovers. (AP) New Orleans Pelicans’ Anthony Davis (23) shoots over Golden State Warriors’ Kevin Durant during their game in Oakland, California, USA. AP OAKLAND, California – The New Orleans Pelicans are fighting for their playoff lives. The Golden State Warriors just want to get back to full strength and defend their championship.“Tonight we’re playing a team that desperately needs to win,” Warriors coach Steve Kerr said. “You can tell the teams around the league that have to win. They’re getting after it. They’re playing for their season. Our season begins next week.”Anthony Davis outduelled Kevin Durant down the stretch on the way to 34 points, and the Pelicans snapped a 10-game losing streak to Golden State with a 126-120 win over the Warriors on Saturday night.Durant scored 19 of his 41 points in the third quarter to go with 10 rebounds and five assists. He made big 3-pointers with 6:39 remaining and at the 4:52 mark that got Golden State to 112-111, but the Pelicans kept answering.
Today, my beautiful wife and best friend enters Johns Hopkins Kimmel Cancer Center to receive the greatest gift that any leukemia patient can be given: a bone marrow transplant and a second chance at life with a new DNA from a very generous (and anonymous) donor from somewhere out there in this wonderful world.We’ve received so many cards, letters, emails, Facebook and Twitter mentions via #JennStrong – the sheer volume of love that has flowed in the direction of Jennifer Ford Aparicio over the past 90 days has been staggering and eye-opening – and we want to first just express our gratitude for all of the concern and offers of kindness and sweet gestures. As awful as some our experiences have been with people over the years, this time in our lives will always be remembered for the good (if not the BEST) in people, especially when some days the burden felt very heavy for us.The love has truly been medicinal on some days when she struggled physically and emotionally. Make no mistake about it, this has been heavy lifting in so many ways.We’ve been peppered with so many questions and concerns regarding her health and honestly don’t know where to begin with dispensing some of the more amazing – and at times “gruesome” for the queasy amongst us – information regarding blood cancer, leukemia and bone marrow transplants. I’m probably the biggest wuss on the planet when it comes to the mention or sight of blood (and Jenn is diabetic to begin with) so this whole thing has been like seeing snakes for me from the beginning.But here’s what you really need to know and hopefully this blog answers some of the FAQs of the #JennStrong bone marrow transplant:Jenn enters the hospital today and will undergo a week of chemotherapy in preparation for her bone marrow transplant next Tuesday, June 17. (This will be her new “birthday.”) There is no “surgery” – just a bag of stem cells and blood that gets attached to her via her port, a pair of tubes that were inserted into her back on March 21st.Our understanding is that there are many less than desirable outcomes that could result from this procedure – there are whole handbooks on Graft vs. Host Disease and other scary complications. Our doctors have been steadfast in their belief that she’s a great candidate for this procedure and that a perfect match and new DNA and bone marrow could give her a whole new lease on life over the next six months. They were also very sobering in their discussions of all of the percentages of living vs. dying, cure vs. recurrence of cancer and various ailments that could exist or take place during the next few weeks.But it’s also very clear that this is Jenn’s only chance to survive because even though she’s in remission and cancer free right now, her pathology indicated that her specific leukemia would certainly come roaring back before the end of football season.Last week a dear friend and client went to breakfast with us and began the conversation by saying, “Wow, you guys have been through a lot of bad stuff!” And we said, “Sure, but let’s examine where we were three months ago and the amazing place where we are now.”On March 20th at 8 a.m. after months of planning with Jenn and my family, I announced the release of my book on the Orioles and Peter Angelos called “The Peter Principles” and my radio comeback after nine years off the air. Nine hours later, Jenn was diagnosed with a rare form of leukemia. She began chemotherapy the next day.On March 27th the doctors somberly entered her hospital room and told us that in terms of treatments there are three types of leukemia: good, intermediate and bad. We were told hers was
Lappe Nordic’s Evan Palmer-Charette of Thunder Bay came sixth. Locke and Palmer-Charette were the only two Canadian U23 athletes in the final.Locke, born and raised in Nelson, won a silver medal at the Senior National Championships in Thunder Bay, Ont., in March of 2015.The 22-year-old Locke, who started racing for the Nelson Nordic Ski Team at the age of six, joined the Black Jack squad at 14 years of age and has been competing with the Rossland-based club since his teens.The U.S. Cross Country Championships consists of four days of races — classic distance, freestyle sprint, freestyle distance and classic sprints from January 3-9.Lock, who trains and races full time also runs a web design, photography and filmmaking business.Story originated at The Nelson Daily Julien Locke of Nelson finished in the medals Monday at the 2016 U.S. Cross Country Championships at Michigan Tech University in Houghton Michigan.Locke, who competes for the Black Jack Ski Team in Rossland, finished the 1.5 kilometer Sprint Distance in third place in a time of three minutes, 18.38 seconds.Reese Hanneman of the United States won the race in a time of 3:15.14. USA teammate Dakota Blackhorse-von Jess was second.
print WhatsApp Facebook Twitter Email Today’s Sports Results from around the county and around the World. Walsh Cup Round 2Westmeath 0-11 NUIG 3-26Galway 1-16 DCU 0-17IT Carlow 2-15 Carlow 0-14Meath 2-7 Wexford 3-18Dublin 3-25 Antrim 1-17Laois 1-19 UCD 0-17O’Byrne Cup Round 3Wexford 3-20 IT Carlow 1-12,Dublin 1-16 DCU 1-12,Offaly 0-11 Kildare 0-13,Louth 3-19 DIT 1-9,Meath 2-16 Laois 0-14,Carlow 1-7 UCD 2-13,Longford 1-9 Wicklow 1-5,Westmeath 0-9 Maynooth University 0-10,McGrath Cup Round 2Kerry 0-9 Clare 0-12,McKenna Cup Round 2Derry 4-6 Tyrone 1-16,Donegal 0-8 St Marys 2-6,Down 0-8 Fermanagh 0-14,Monaghan 2-9 Armagh 0-16,Connacht Winter Ladies Football League Semi-FinalNUI Galway 4-6 Mayo 2-13RUGBYGuinness Pro12Scarlets 21-19 ConnachtSOCCERConnacht Junior CupManulla 1-6 Salthill DevonFA CUPOxford 3-2 SwanseaChelsea 2-0 ScunthorpeCarlisle 2-2 YeovilTottenham 2-2 LeicesterCardiff Shrewsbury Latest FBD SFL Round 2Roscommon 0-12 NUIG 0-8Mayo 1-16 IT Sligo 0-8Sligo 0-12 GMIT 1-10Galway 1-8 Leitrim 1-5
SERGIO AGUERO is OUT of Manchester City’s crunch clash with Tottenham on Saturday.Pep Guardiola suggested the knee injury was aggravated by the heavy tackle from Ashley Young in the Manchester derby defeat last week.5 Sergio Aguero will MISS Man City’s clash with Spurs – Pep Guardiola suggested that Ashley Youngs tackle on Aguero aggravated the injuryCredit: AFP or licensorsYoung crunched the striker half way up his shin but no penalty was given – Manchester United went on to beat Man City 3-2.Pep said: “Aguero is not ready. I don’t know [when he will return].”We cannot forget he was injured for one month.”He made a huge effort [to play against Liverpool], because after the Ashley Young tackle… he could not train.5 Guardiola said Aguero made a huge effort, playing through pain, to play against LiverpoolCredit: PA:Press Association5 Aguero could only play the final 20 minutes as Liverpool beat Man City in the Champions LeagueCredit: Alamy Live News”He played the last 20 minutes [against Liverpool] and after the game he said, ‘I cannot run, I have a lot of pain, I cannot run’.”I don’t know if he’ll be ready for Swansea, but hopefully for the final games if we need him and especially for the World Cup.”THORNY ISSUE Danny Rose ruled out of Tottenham clash against Manchester City with fears over World Cup fitnessGuardiola was criticised for leaving Aguero on the bench for the Champions League quarter-final defeat to Liverpool – but it appears he took a risk naming him on the bench.The City boss will also be without midfield maestro Fernandinho, who has been banned two games for accumulating 10 bookings.5 Fernandinho is suspended for two games after picking up 10 yellow cardsCredit: REUTERSBenjamin Mendy is a long-term concern, while John Stones is also missing after he picked up a knock in training last week.”We have 14 players for the next game, plus the kids,” added Guardiola.The Catalan coach has suffered through a miserable 10 days, but insists his players only need to remain calm in the final months of the season.”Try to be who we were during the season and thinking about three points,” he said.5 Danny Rose will miss this weekend’s game against Man City because of a calf injuryCredit: Ian WaltonMOST READ IN FOOTBALLRETRACING STEPSJack Charlton’s granddaughter Emma Wilkinson ‘would love’ to visit IrelandROY RAGEFurious Roy Keane launched foul-mouthed rant at Pique over Fabregas friendshipPicturedTOP FORMBrazil icon Ronaldo soaks up sun with partner Celina Locks on yacht in FormenteraPicturedON THE PAOLPaolo Maldini shows off shredded physique at 52 while on holiday with wifeLive BlogUNITED LATESTMan Utd transfer news LIVE: All the gossip and updates from Old TraffordExclusiveLOCK CLOWNPaul Scholes flouts local lockdown rules by throwing huge 7-hour birthday bashPicturedMADD FOR ITPrem aces Dele, Maddison & Grealish enjoy hard-earned break in sun-soaked IbizaLive Bloggunners newsArsenal transfer news LIVE – Latest updates from the Emirates”We are 13 points clear because we deserve to be there.”In the last eight or nine Premier League games, we lost one. We won the last five in a row before United. Results are good.”We need to think about the strong points of Tottenham, try to win the game.”One of the successes we have had is when we drop points, we have then win, win, win, win.”For Spurs, Danny Rose is missing because of a calf injury.
Aston Villa star Jack Grealish mocked over appearance by QPR fans ASTON VILLA have reportedly slammed the door shut on Jack Grealish’s move to Tottenham.Spurs made an opening offer of £25million last night but Sky Sports report that Villa joint-chairman Nassef Sawiris has told Grealish he is staying put in this window.5 Jack Grealish has been told he is staying at Villa for nowCredit: GettyBristol City’s Joe Bryan is also set to join Villa in a £6m deal.Villa look at have beaten Middlesbrough to the brilliant left-back, with the Claret and Blues paying £4m up front.The double boost to Steve Bruce comes at the end of a window that started disastrously as the club put ALL of their players up for sale.Spurs made their interest in Grealish, 22, known early on but only made their opening offer with less than 48 hours left for English clubs to buy players.SunSport understands Grealish would have welcomed the opportunity to discuss a move to Spurs due to the appeal of Champions League action.But the Villa fan was not willing to demand a move away from his boyhood club and now looks set to stay for now.5 Grealish showed his appreciation to fans after Villa’s 3-1 win over HullCredit: Reuters5 Bristol City left-back Joe Bryan is posied to sign for VillaCredit: ReutersSpurs chairman Daniel Levy was keen to do a deal on the cheap for Grealish when the extent of Villa’s financial crisis was revealed earlier in the summer.But billionaires Sawiris and Wes Eden bailed out Tony Xia with a 55 per cent buy-out and told Bruce his stars were no longer up for sale.Villa still need to generate around £40m to solve their Financial Fair Play problems – and Grealish could go in January.But it appears that Villa will now hold onto their prized asset as they look to end a three-year stay in the Championship.Fans sang “he’s one of our own” and “we want you to stay” after Grealish was subbed off at the end of Villa’s 3-1 win over Hull on Monday.5 Villa investors Nassef Sawiris and Wes Edens appear to have handed Steve Bruce a major boost with their desire to keep GrealishCredit: GettyMOST READ IN FOOTBALLRETRACING STEPSJack Charlton’s granddaughter Emma Wilkinson ‘would love’ to visit IrelandROY RAGEFurious Roy Keane launched foul-mouthed rant at Pique over Fabregas friendshipPicturedTOP FORMBrazil icon Ronaldo soaks up sun with partner Celina Locks on yacht in FormenteraPicturedON THE PAOLPaolo Maldini shows off shredded physique at 52 while on holiday with wifeExclusiveLOCK CLOWNPaul Scholes flouts local lockdown rules by throwing huge 7-hour birthday bashLive BlogUNITED LATESTMan Utd transfer news LIVE: All the gossip and updates from Old TraffordLive Bloggunners newsArsenal transfer news LIVE – Latest updates from the EmiratesPicturedMADD FOR ITPrem aces Dele, Maddison & Grealish enjoy hard-earned break in sun-soaked IbizaLive BlogBLUES NEWSChelsea transfer news LIVE: Havertz deal LATEST, Willian move updatesMISS-RON IMPOSSIBLERonaldo LOSES Golden Boot race after axe from Juve squad for final gameAnd they now appear to have got their wish despite Grealish appearing to wave goodbye at the end of the match.Failure to land Grealish could leave Mauricio Pochettino without a single signing this window.Bryan is poised to become Villa’s fourth addition after Manchester United defender Axel Tuanzebe and Atletico Madrid keeper Andre Moreira joined on loan, with shot-stopper Orjan Nyland signing from Ingolstadt for £1m.Villa have also held talks at their training ground with Hibernian midfielder John McGinn over a £4m move amid interest from Celtic.5 Villa are closing on Hibs midfielder John McGinnCredit: Kenny Ramsay – The Sun GlasgowSign up for Dream Team 2018/19 nowDream Team is back and better than ever ahead of the new Premier League seasonCompletely free to play£400k jackpot up for grabs across the seasonREGISTER FOR DREAM TEAM 2018/19 HERE
Last summer, SELENA GOMEZ bagged on her tour and checked into a psychiatric facility in Tennessee. And in a new interview with “Vogue”, she explains why.She says, quote, “Tours are a really lonely place for me. My self-esteem was shot. I was depressed, anxious. I started to have panic attacks right before getting onstage, or right after leaving the stage.“Basically I felt I wasn’t good enough, wasn’t capable. I felt I wasn’t giving my fans anything, and they could see it.”Part of that had to do with her fans getting older . . . quote, “I was so used to performing for kids. At concerts I used to make the entire crowd raise up their pinkies and make a pinky promise never to allow anybody to make them feel that they weren’t good enough.“Suddenly I have . . . people in their 20s, 30s, and I’m looking into their eyes, and I don’t know what to say . . . I felt I had no wisdom to share. And so maybe I thought everybody out there was thinking, ‘This is a waste of time.’”
23 May 2011 Brazil is a country more likely to conjure up images of beaches, samba and soccer than of people hard at work. Yet the tropical nation’s development bank has become an inspiring model to South Africa in its quest to boost industrial development. The idea that South Africa would look to a development bank in Brazil is even more significant when one considers that for years economists repeatedly wrote off the South American country as one of all talk and no action. But in the last decade or more, things have begun to change. Last year, Brazil grew 7.5% and this year it overtook Italy to become the world’s seventh-largest economy. Much of this growth is being driven by loans to businesses and infrastructure projects by Brazil’s development bank, BNDES. The bank has more than tripled its lending over the last five years, so much so that it is now one of the biggest development banks in the world – exceeding even the mighty World Bank. Last year, the Brazilian development bank lent out 168.4-billion reals (R733-billion) – more than double the World Bank’s US$44.2-billion (R306-billion) in disbursements for 2010. This has taken place while the Brazilian development bank last year posted a record profit of 9.9-million reals and a default rate of a mere 0.15%.IDC starts scaling up BNDES lending dwarves that of South Africa’s Industrial Development Corporation (IDC), which in the 2010 financial year disbursed R6.2-billion, posting a profit of R2.2-billion with a 16.3% impairments ratio. But the IDC too, is scaling up. Last month, Economic Development Minister Ebrahim Patel announced that the IDC would invest R102-billion in funding over the next five years – a 160% increase on the IDC’s loan approvals in the past five years. The IDC is now considering selling off some of its holdings – which include shares in major firms such as ArcelorMittal, Sasol and Kumba Iron Ore, among others – to finance the expected R36-billion shortfall in investment spending. It also hopes to inject more capital into small business lending – with the planned merger of Khula Enterprise Finance and the South African Micro Finance Apex Fund (Samaf) with the IDC’s small business funding portfolio to create a wholly-owned subsidiary under the IDC dedicated to funding small enterprises.A more powerful, strategic funding agency Brazil’s development bank has provided the IDC with several important lessons in how to create a more powerful and strategic funding agency – with Patel noting in June last year that his department is looking at emulating the success of BNDES. The Brazilian development bank’s use of funding from its Worker’s Assistance Fund – the equivalent of South Africa’s Workmen’s Compensation Fund – led the IDC to form a joint R2-billion funding scheme with the Unemployment Insurance Fund (UIF) launched last year. Shakeel Meer, the IDC’s divisional executive of corporate strategy, says the IDC is particularly interested in BNDES’ application of local content development – where the Brazilian development bank insists on a certain percentage of local suppliers or content when it hands out funding. Meer says insight into BNDES’ model had also led to the exposure to various industry specific financing schemes and methods, which has helped the IDC to formulate various financing schemes in recent years.International linkages The IDC has over the years, built strong links with a number of development banks around the world – such as the European Investment Bank, Germany’s KFW/DEG, France’s AFD/Proparco, Japan’s JBIC and the China Development Bank. The IDC first became interested in BNDES in 2005, after an IDC delegation visited its Brazilian counterpart to conduct an institutional benchmarking exercise. In a 2005 study by the IDC’s Jorge Maia and Lumkile Mondi, and economist Simon Roberts, found that BNDES was heavily involved in financing the Brazilian economy such that not a single major undertaking, involving private Brazilian capital after 1950, had taken place in Brazil without BNDES support. The authors also found that despite higher real interest rates in Brazil, BNDES had maintained better rates of investment than South Africa – partly because of the larger role that it plays in Brazil’s economy. They also found that financing at BNDES is closely linked to the bank’s strategic view of the economy and its practice of linking financing requirements to the promotion of local industrialisation. With relations between the IDC and BNDES growing closer, the two, in 2009, signed a technical co-operation agreement aimed at exchanging ideas on industrial strategy, financial products and co-operating in financing projects in Africa.Different operating environments However, Meer cautions that despite the similarity between the corporate mandates and origins, the operating environments and institutional funding models of each institution has evolved in a very different manner. For example, while BNDES has a near monopoly in Brazil’s long-term funding market, the IDC has to compete along side private-sector banks in South Africa. Another difference is that while the IDC has an almost exclusively direct funding approach, BNDES utilises an enormous network of financial intermediaries for indirect funding purposes, largely due to the specific characteristics of the Brazilian financial system. Meer says BNDES use of financial intermediaries accounts for its substantially lower defaults, since this is largely carried by the intermediaries. The IDC’s project development initiatives and its large equity portfolio also means the IDC is forced to assume a “substantially” higher degree of risk than BNDES, he said. Beyond the differences between the two banks, critics have questioned whether BNDES massive scaling up of finance is sustainable, pointing out that the bank’s funding is massively subsidised by Brazil’s treasury, which risks driving up inflation by releasing too much cheap money into the market. Meer however believes the expected increase in IDC financing would not have a negative effect on the South African economy, pointing out that the IDC’s funding activities complement those of the private financial sector. He says IDC also has cooperative funding arrangements with various domestic financiers. The IDC uses a pricing approach that considers both risk and development impact, he says. “In addition, from time to time, IDC introduces specific subsidised funds to promote targeted objectives,” he explains, adding that this was a similar approach to BNDES. The IDC also launched a lower interest rate offering this year which offers prime less three percent for projects with a high employment effect. Meer says the offer of lower interest rates within certain funding schemes is made possible by cross-subsidisation internally, as well as due to specific external funding arrangements with for example the UIF.Too much state control? Speaking to BuaNews recently, BNDES president Luciano Coutinho, disagrees with critics that believe the massive increase in funding by BNDES risks putting the state in too much control of the economy. “In our case there is no danger at all because our bank has a highly professional management and our non-performing loans are much lower than the private banking system,” Coutinho said. “We have a very competent bank and we understand that in order to have an efficient development bank we have got to be absolutely professional in terms of credit rating and independent decision making and we have to be accountable and transparent. “Those are pillars of good governance, because if you don’t have good governance you can’t be a good development bank, because we manage public money so we have to be efficient in managing money.” Coutinho says developing funding priorities was an important step to boosting the role of any developing finance bank and notes that the IDC has already developed priorities such as funding infrastructure development, food security (through loans to agro-processing companies) and the green economy. Last year about 93%, or 568 000, of BNDES funding disbursements were to micro, small and medium-sized companies as well as individuals – with 320 000, or half of all its funding operations were through the BNDES Card – which is a hybrid of an e-commerce and credit card financing system. About R$4.3-billion was disbursed through the card to SMEs – 74% up on 2009. He believes the card might be a product that South Africa could learn from BNDES and that the bank could make available in its technical co-operation agreement with the IDC. Source: BuaNews
1 August 2012 The new Real Estate Investment Trust (REIT) structure, scheduled to become available to the South African property sector in early 2013, will both benefit local property structures and increase foreign investment opportunities, according to consultancy Grant Thornton. The adoption of the REIT structure, which is recognised in most key property markets internationally, will revive South Africa’s current systems, which are dated and often tedious, through the introduction of a scheme that has been tried and tested internationally, Grant Thornton said last week. At the same time, the REITs will “bring about much-needed tax and regulatory changes that local property structures could certainly benefit from in the long term,” the company said in a statement.Treasury, SA Revenue Service lauded The National Treasury’s proposal to introduce this listed property investment regime, aimed at aligning the South African listed property sector with its international counterparts, will also create a more attractive investment structure, significantly enhancing international interest. AJ Jansen van Nieuwenhuizen, head of tax at Grant Thornton Johannesburg, said the main reason for the overhaul “is because existing local structures, property loan stocks (PLS) and property unit trusts (PUT) are unevenly regulated and subject to different tax treatments, prompting the need for a shared set of regulations. The Tax Amendment Bill proposing REITs, which was tabled in July, will unify the approach to local property investment schemes and provide greater certainty for international investors. “The proposed tax framework reflects that global best practice for REITs has been carefully considered, and National Treasury and Sars [the South African Revenue Service] should be commended for taking international considerations into account,” Jansen van Nieuwenhuizen said.International lessons learnt “Some of these lessons were clearly learnt from the UK REIT regime, which at first levied a conversion charge of 2% of the value of the property portfolio of REITs wanting to convert and limited the REITs’ listing to the main exchange.” In an effort to be more competitive with other REIT markets like Australia and the US, the UK dropped the conversion charge, has expanded listings to the AIM exchange, and has temporarily relaxed the gearing limits. According to Grant Thornton, South Africa’s draft proposals do not contain any of these onerous provisions. Jansen van Nieuwenhuizen said the new framework would modernise the rules governing South Africa’s property investment regime and attract foreign investment. PUT and PLS structures that comply with the proposed REIT requirements will benefit from certain tax dispensations, specifically, an exemption from capital gains tax (CGT). “These tax features are certainly strong benefits of the proposed structure,” Jansen van Nieuwenhuizen said.Listing requirements He also pointed out that a company wishing to register as a REIT had to be listed, or intend to list, on the Johannesburg Stock Exchange (JSE) and comply with all listing regulations. At present, there are no listing requirements for PUTs, although they are regulated closely by the Financial Services Board (FSB). “The introduction of REITs will expand the investment options available to those PUT structures that elect to register.” Despite the increased flexibility, tradability and tax relief offered by REITs, Jansen van Nieuwenhuizen said that PUTs and other property investment entities would have to consider the increased administrative and regulatory burden of listing before making a decision.Additional requirements REIT-registered companies will have to satisfy four additional requirements, according to Grant Thornton. “The levels for each requirement are yet to be finalised, but as it currently stands, companies must have a minimum gross holding of direct or indirect property assets of R300-million.” In addition, a REIT “must distribute at least 70% of its profits annually, and its gearing is limited to 60% of net asset value.” A PLS, South Africa’s more dominant vehicle for property structures, is a share-linked debenture structure that is indivisibly tradable on the JSE and taxed at a normal rate of 28% with an effective CGT rate of 18.6%. Under the PLS structure, most profit is paid out to investors as interest, which is tax-deductible in the PLS and taxable income in the hands of the investor, meaning that the PLS vehicle attracts low levels of income tax. “Yet in substance, the revenue authorities have always contended that the distribution is more akin to profit than interest, and this contradicts general tax principles,” Jansen van Nieuwenhuizen said. The new framework will improve the tax treatment for PLSs, seen to be problematic and a major factor behind the proposal to introduce REITs in South Africa. Grant Thornton advises companies looking to register as REITs in South Africa to ensure that they adhere to all of the requirements to avoid profits being taxed. “Similarly, each merger or acquisition must be closely examined to ensure that the target does not compromise the company’s REIT status.” SAinfo reporter