The Cape economy already hit hard by the water crisis

In the middle of her Cape Town property, Marlize Jacobs worries. The historic drought in the second largest city in South Africa has put its vineyards to the test and is now threatening to jeopardize all its activity.

"Our tonnage retreats for the fourth year in a row and the shortage of wine threatens ", laments the viticulturist, installed for more than ten years on the usually green hillsides of Vergenoegd.

" The costs related to water have almost doubled, "she sighs," we do not use that the water strictly necessary to keep the vines alive, not a drop more. "

Cape Town and its region have suffered for three years from an exceptional drought that deprived them of most of their rains. winter.

The threat of the famous "Zero Day" or "without tap water" and the prospect of a rationing of populations, agitated for months by the authorities, was rejected for this year at the price of a drastic reduction of private consumption.

Resides They use more than two-thirds (70%) of the water consumed by the city, but the economy has not been spared by the necessary restrictions on consumption.

 Cape Town water crisis (AFP - Kun TIAN)

Water Crisis in Cape Town (AFP – Kun TIAN)

In January, the rating agency Moody's warned that it would degrade without hesitation the agglomeration at the disgraceful level of investment "speculative" if the water crisis was prolonged.

Most optimistic, the authorities of the Western Cape Province conceded that "the persistent drought has degraded (its) growth forecasts relative to those of the rest of the country and now threatens the level of employment. "

– Rising prices –

Agriculture and especially viticulture, which is the prestige of the Captonian hinterland and employs tens of thousands of employees, are subjected to severe test.

The decline of its activities because of drying Among other factors, eresse contributed to plunge South Africa into a "technical" recession in early 2017. Since then, the sector has been on the rise and the region has breathed a sigh of relief.

In 2016, the region only 20% of the wine and 16% of the fruit juice consumed in other African countries. The vineyards also drain a large contingent of foreign visitors to the region, the flow of which is vital: the tourism sector provides 300,000 jobs to the region.

 In St. James, 25 km from downtown Cape Town, residents live supplying drinking water on January 19, 2018 (AFP / Archives - RODGER BOSCH)

In St. James, 25 km from downtown Cape Town, residents get fresh water on January 19, 2018 (AFP / Archives – RODGER BOSCH)

Another sector affected, that of public works. Some shipyards could only be completed through distant water deliveries. The others were purely and simply suspended.

The Rabie group now uses wastewater to manufacture its cement on the Cape shipyards, at the cost of a logistical extra cost. "It increases the price of construction," sums up his boss Miguel Rodrigues.

In 2016 already, 94% of local businesses had listed lack of water as a risk for their activities.

Unlike individuals, However, as far as possible, professionals have been spared the daily consumption limits strongly suggested by the authorities.

– Strategies –

"The point is to avoid creating another crisis in the crisis", pleads the elected official in charge of security at the municipality, JP Smith, "the public works sector is already very fragile, if you cut off the water you are clearly endangering employment."

To convince consumers To reduce their use of water, the municipality even used university experts in behavioral sciences to develop the best strategy of persuasion or encouragement.

With success, apparently, since she ap to reduce personal consumption by 60% in three years

The industrialists themselves have developed alternative strategies to save water.

Engineer at the Koeberg nuclear power plant, 30 km north of Cape Town, Christopher Smith says he has developed a seawater desalination plant for use in reactor cooling systems.

"We had no choice, we had to take the bull by the horns, "he says.

AB InBev's local beer plant executive declined to comment on the drought's impact on its operations, but other players in the sector have all confided that a "Day zero" would be catastrophic.

"If there is no more water, the entire catering industry will die", summarizes without frills Raphael Clistini, a South African 28 years old who opens bars all over the world

In his new bar Cape docks, it serves a gin produced in a distillery in the city that may soon be forced to bring its water from Johannesburg, 1400 km away.

"It will still drive up prices," sighs he already.

The Indian economy will rise this year

India has projected its economy to rise 7 to 7.5 percent this year and reclaim its position as the world's fastest-growing major economy and underestimate the impact of currency bans and tax reforms.

However, the government has warned that rising international oil prices had a negative impact on a country that relied heavily on energy imports.

"The economy is growing quite rapidly," said the country's chief economic adviser, Arvind Subramanian while delivering the country's annual economic survey.

Activity indicators show growth in manufacturing, investment, export and credit, all starting to rise. The direction is very good. "

Projections for Asia's third largest economy are in line with recent estimates by the World Bank and International Monetary Fund. The rise of growth is good news for India.

Last year its growth slowed to a low level for three years in a row. Whereas India once boasted to defeat China as the fastest growing economy in the world by 2015.

The slowing of the Indian economy is different from many countries where growth is increasing. Suspected cause is two major policy reforms that appear only six months later

Businesses were disrupted for several months last year while the government attempted to replace cash following a currency ban that sucked 86 percent of cash. Long-delayed tax reforms, Goods and Services Tax (GST) runs in July, but its application is poorly maturing, causing chaos for the business sector

"The temporary impact of demonization and GST has gone. Improvement measures have been taken, "Subramanian said of his optimism about the new growth projections.

The government says both efforts have helped boost the number of people paying taxes. Restoring important growth momentum for India that calls the country an attractive destination for international investors.

Indian Prime Minister Narendra Modi last week seduced investors at the World Economic Forum in Davos. He says that protectionism is getting stronger and globalization is losing its appeal, but India is open to business.

The rise of the economy is also good news for the modi-led Hindu nationalist government preparing for next year's elections.

economists say the government is expected to focus on rural development programs and SMEs in future budgets that will be described on Thursday as the government looks for ways to create jobs for a large young population.

"The world is very optimistic about India. The 2018 budget will add freshness to India's development and fulfill people's aspirations, "Prime Minister said via Twitter when the parliament opened on Tuesday.

The survey also confirms the challenges facing the large Indian villagers. The survey said unlicensed farms were badly affected by climate change, extreme temperatures and less rain. Alleviating the suffering of farmers is a big challenge for the government. [vm/ii]

Trump will Emphasize the Strong Economy in SOTU Speech

Trump will deliver a speech to a joint Congressional assembly last year, but it is not considered a State of the Union speech because he has been in office for a few weeks.

"Tonight I want to convey a unifying and reinforcing message, delivered from the bottom of the heart, "said Trump.

This year, the president is expected to emphasize a strong US economy. But so far the rising economy has not helped boost the level of public approval for Trump. The Democrats complained he was unclear about his priorities. Democratic Senate Chancellor Chuck Schumer said, "Republican leaders will not go their own way, they are afraid of President Trump They want to know what he will do but he does not tell them to do anything."

Speech is an opportunity for the president to rally public support, said Morton Blackwell, a republic of the Leadership Institute

"" I am sure the situation will reverse, as opposed to Republican versus Democratic polls, and I think the president's popularity will rise, "he added.

, facing a sharply divided state, said Jim Kessler, a Democrat.

The Russian-related investigation will overshadow the speech, including some reports that the president ordered the dismissal of special investigator Robert Mueller last year, and withdrew the order when his White House adviser threatened

The inquiry is expected to be an issue in the election of the congressman union, analyst John Hudak of the Brookings Institution said.

'The investigation by Mueller overshadowed this government continuously, and it will also be a factor influencing voters' judgment of the Republicans,' he said.

economics, trade and immigration, Trump is also expected to address foreign policy challenges including North Korea, Iran and Afghanistan. [nm/al]

Trump Praise US Economy

US President Donald Trump praised US economic growth on Sunday, calling it "better than in recent decades." Economic growth is expected to be the theme of the State of the Union state speech next Tuesday.

– business returns to the US than ever before, "Trump said via Twitter. "Unemployment is almost at its lowest level. We're on the right track! "

He said," Chrysler, for example, left Mexico and will return to the US, "he exaggerated Chrysler's expansion plan Fiat Chrysler, the world's eighth largest automaker, said it will invest one billion the dollar to assemble Ram pickup trucks in the state of Michigan, shifting production from Mexico, but not reducing manufacturing employment in Mexico.

The US unemployment rate has stabilized at a 4.1 percent rate in the past three months, the 17th lowest in the US economy, the world's largest, rose 2.3 percent last year, the first year Trump took office, up from 1.5 percent in 2016.

However, the US economy slowed in the last three months of 2017, up only 2.6 percent, down from 3.2 percent in the period July to September.

While praising the US economic performance, Trump also attacked Jay-Z, after the rap star criticized Trump Saturday for criticizing Haitians and Africa recently. Trump is known to want to prevent immigrants from those countries to the US

"Please tell Jay-Z that due to my policies, the black unemployment rate is reported to reach the lowest level of all time!" says Trump. The black unemployment rate in the United States fell to 6.8 percent, still more than the white population of 3.7 percent.

Jay-Z told CNN that the black economic increase was not worth the Trump attack against the majority leather states black.

"Everyone feels angry, but after anger, there's pain because he's underestimated a population of people and he does not know, those places have good people," Jay-Z added, "On ultimately this is not about money Money can not buy happiness Treat people like humans, "he said. [nm/al]

China's Economy Reports First Annual Increment Since 2010

China's economy jumped in 2017, posting a 6.9 percent increase from a year earlier, its first annual rise in seven years.

The figures announced Thursday by the National Bureau of Statistics topped the 6.7 percent recorded in 2016, which marked the weakest annual growth in 26 years. The rate was also well above the 6.5 percent target set by government policy makers.

The bureau said the unexpected rise was mainly triggered by strong exports, which rose 10.8 percent from a year earlier, and boosted consumer spending , with retail sales growing 10.2 percent.

These figures encouraged the government's decision to shift away from wasteful and polluting industries, which has so far spurred rapidly on the rise, making China the second largest economy in the world. [lt]