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Seventeen for 17

It would be fair to say 2016 was a most eventful year – although most of the Western Cape business community might have preferred not to have endured ructions in the exchange rate, the prolonged drought and numerous political curve balls.

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African Utility Week returns to Cape Town in May

“The power and energy landscape in Africa is undergoing significant change,” said Evan Schiff, Event Director, African Utility Week adding that current trends include “the availability of private investment for power and energy projects, the fast development of renewables, energy storage that is becoming cheaper and more reliable, gas that is now a viable mode of power generation, and that in the next ten years, nuclear will become an increasingly important mode of base-load power generation as traditional power plants using coal are gradually phased out.”

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On the financial wish list for 2017

Although South Africa has little reason for alarm when it comes to the stability of its banking system, political risks still loom large and the consequences are difficult to anticipate. This is why a safety net in the form of deposit insurance is so important. And South Africa is one of only a handful of countries in the world not to have it.

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Expect slowing property price growth in 2017, with a few exceptions

The residential property market has had its ups and downs during 2016 as the economy stagnates, the Reserve Bank started hiking interest rates again and consumers struggle with household debt-to-income. What's in store for 2017; slowing property price growth - with a few notable exceptions - an increase in demand for smaller properties, specifically sectional title, and a tightening of the belt when it comes to household savings.

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Will internet privacy suffer in 2017?

It’s clear that 2016 was probably the worst year ever in online privacy - considering increasingly restrictive surveillance laws of governments around the world, major online hacks - such as compromised accounts of over a million Yahoo users - and authoritarian regimes blocking Internet to restrict the freedom of speech. So, what can we expect in 2017? Will the trend continue, and will we have to face more Internet freedom restrictions and hacks by criminals?

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