| Africatime
Thursday 23 March 2017
(AFP (eng) 01/14/17)
Virtually all the pre-2017 Africa Cup of Nations talk about Group B has concerned which two countries from Algeria, Senegal and Tunisia will advance to the quarter-finals. Zimbabwe, who complete the quartet based in southeastern Gabonese city Franceville, have been dismissed as no-hopers in a section featuring three of the top five ranked African teams. The Senegalese headed the monthly FIFA listings released this week with the Tunisians fourth, the Algerians fifth, and the Zimbabweans a distant 30th. Recently appointed Algeria coach Georges Leekens has warned, however, that his 'Desert Foxes' dare not underestimate the 'Warriors', the lone qualifiers from southern Africa. Algeria confront Zimbabwe Sunday in the first half of a double-header at the 20,000-seat Stade de Franceville, followed...
(RFI 01/14/17)
The 27th Africa-France Summit kicked off on Friday in the Malian capital Bamako with more than 30 African heads of state meeting French officials to discuss the threat of jihadists in the Sahel region and improve democracy in Africa. the meeting is also an opportunity for French president François Hollande to showcase his legacy. The choice to hold the 27th Africa-France summit in Mali is not insignificant. Bamako is where president François Hollande first revealed himself as an international statesman, when France's military launched Operation Serval in January 2013 as jihadists allied to Tuareg rebels took control of the north of the country. "I took the necessary steps and we intervened militarily, and what we did there in terms of...
(AFP (eng) 01/13/17)
New-look Ivory Coast are preparing to defend the Africa Cup of Nations, which kicks off in Gabon on Saturday, buoyed by encouraging results and impressive form from new recruit Wilfried Zaha. The Crystal Palace flier hopes to make an impact in a competition that boasts Europe-based stars like Riyad Mahrez of Algeria, Pierre-Emerick Aubameyang of Gabon and Sadio Mane of Senegal. Zaha is a timely addition as many former stars like the Toure brothers Kolo and Yaya have retired and star winger Gervinho is injured. Abidjan-born Zaha has been lured to the African champions by the possibilities of Cup of Nations and World Cup glory after two friendly appearances for adopted country England. He set up the crucial goal in...
(AFP (eng) 01/13/17)
France's top diplomat Jean-Marc Ayrault struck a defiant tone at a summit on Friday with foreign ministers from across Africa as he urged them to show confidence and hope despite the deadly jihadist threat. With the battle against extremists, the struggle to improve governance and the migrant crisis high on the agenda, ministers from at least 30 nations met in Mali's capital Bamako ahead of heads of state due on Saturday. Mali called on France four years ago to help force jihadists out of key northern cities. To this day, 4,000 French troops remain in the country and across the Sahel region. "(Choosing) Bamako as the venue is an act of confidence after the intervention," Ayrault told journalists as the...
(AFP (eng) 01/13/17)
Talks gathering some 30 African states and France begin in Mali's capital Bamako on Friday, with leaders expected to focus on Africa's battle against jihadists and bid to improve its democratic record. The summit, also due to take in the migrant crisis, will see foreign ministers gather first, with heads of state expected to follow Saturday, according to Malian and French conference organisers. Many of the nations taking part were once ruled by France, which in recent years has boosted its military involvement in the continent. Several English-speaking African countries will also be present. In a bid to help crush the growing jihadist threat, France has trained more than 20,000 African soldiers every year since a Paris summit in 2013,...
(AFP (eng) 01/12/17)
Algerian midfielder Saphir Taïder has been ruled out of the Africa Cup of Nations with a recurring knee injury and will be replaced by Ismail Bennacer. The Algerian Football Federation (FAF) said 19-year-old Arsenal midfielder Bennacer will arrive in Algiers on Thursday before flying to Gabon for their tournament opener on Sunday against Zimbabwe. Taïder aggravated a previous injury during training with defender Ramy Bensebaini also nursing a niggling knee problem. Algeria are drawn in Group B with Tunisia, Senegal and Zimbabwe, with the top two advancing to the quarter-finals. amb/ea
(AFP (eng) 01/10/17)
Manchester United and Liverpool have each lost an important player, but in the Premier League it is Leicester City for whom the Africa Cup of Nations is the biggest inconvenience. While United centre-back Eric Bailly has been called up by the Ivory Coast and Liverpool have lost Senegalese flier Sadio Mane, Leicester have had to cede Riyad Mahrez, Islam Slimani and Daniel Amartey. Fifteenth in the table, Leicester are fighting to avoid being dragged into a relegation dogfight and left-back Christian Fuchs says it is a chance for the squad's fringe players to prove their worth. "These are very essential players for us," Fuchs told local newspaper the Leicester Mercury. "We can talk about how it will hurt us and...
(Huffingtonpost 01/10/17)
And it’s ironic given the growing consensus that Beijing is the U.S. president-elect’s enemy number one. Eric Olander and Cobus van Staden are the duo behind the China Africa Project and hosts of the popular China in Africa Podcast. We’re here to answer your most pressing, puzzling, even politically incorrect questions, about all things related to the Chinese in Africa and Africans in China. The election of Donald Trump has introduced a new era of uncertainty in global politics, especially in Africa where the president-elect has said little about his foreign policy agenda for the continent. Not surprisingly, Trump’s unpredictable, provocative style is sparking widespread concern across the continent as to whether the United States plans to remain engaged in...
(AFP (eng) 01/09/17)
New African Footballer of the Year and Algeria winger Riyad Mahrez tops a cast of stars heading to Gabon this week for the 2017 Africa Cup of Nations. AFP Sport selects five footballers worth keeping a close eye on when the biennial 16-team competition bursts into action this Saturday: PIERRE-EMERICK AUBAMEYANG (Gabon) The 27-year-old striker has been averaging a goal a game this season for Borussia Dortmund to top the Bundesliga scorers' chart going into the mid-season break. After being crowned 2015 African Footballer of the Year, the France-born son of a Gabonese father and a Spanish mother finished runner-up to lethal Leicester City weapon Mahrez in the latest poll. He will be desperate to do well for Gabon as...
(AFP (eng) 01/09/17)
A new-look Ivory Coast will defend their Africa Cup of Nations title while the hosts' lightning-quick striker Pierre-Emerick Aubameyang leads the cast of superstar names as the 2017 tournament begins in Gabon on Saturday. As Borussia Dortmund striker Aubameyang prepares to carry the hopes of the small central African nation on his shoulders at the biennial African football showpiece, the fleet-footed Riyad Mahrez will aim to top a magnificent 12 months by taking Algeria to the February 5 final and the continental title. Mahrez heads for Gabon fresh from winning the Confederation of African Football player of the year prize for 2016, pipping last year's winner Aubameyang. "The next thing after this award is the Africa Cup of Nations. My...
(AFP (eng) 01/09/17)
Gabon witnessed one of the most sensational finishes to an Africa Cup of Nations tournament when no-hopers Zambia stunned the Ivory Coast to win the 2012 final. Zambia failed to qualify this time, but the Ivorians will be among the favourites again when the competition returns to the central African state with the first fixtures scheduled for Saturday. AFP Sport rates the chances of the 16 challengers for the $4 million (3.8 million euros) first prize (last three competitive results in brackets with W denoting a win, D a draw and L a loss): FAVOURITES Egypt (WWW) Back among the elite and in good form. After winning three consecutive Cup of Nations titles, they failed to qualify for the past...
(Agence Ecofin 01/06/17)
Indian firm Aaviskaar Venture Management Services (AVMS) has announced plans to raise between $100 million and $150 million for Africa investments. “We will start the fund-raising around the middle of 2017 and we expect to close it in 2018,” said Vineet Rai, founder of Intellecap-Aavishkaar group. The new African fund will focus on investing on African low-income groups, especially in the agriculture, finance and financial technology sectors. “We will use the sow-tend-reap strategy of multiple round investing and will be an early investor,” Rai told local Indian media Regions targeted are West and East Africa, especially Kenya, Ethiopia, Nigeria, Rwanda, Tanzania and Ghana. Investments will range from half a million to $5 million. The investment firm’s expansion strategy in Africa...
(AFP (eng) 01/05/17)
Algeria forward Riyad Mahrez is favourite to be crowned African Footballer of the Year for 2016 on the back of his contribution to Leicester City's shock English Premier League title win. The Confederation of African Football (CAF) title would make it a hat-trick of wins for the 25-year-old, who has already been named PFA players' player of the year and BBC African player of the year. The CAF award ceremony -- Africa's most prestigious and now in its 25th year -- takes place in the Nigerian capital, Abuja, on Thursday. Mahrez was a key figure for Leicester last season, which saw the English East Midlands club defy 5000-1 odds and predictions of relegation to clinch a fairytale title victory. He...
(AFP (eng) 01/04/17)
West Ham are to appeal the controversial sending-off of Sofiane Feghouli, a spokesman for the Premier League club told Press Association Sport on Tuesday. The 27-year-old Algerian international winger was given a straight red card by referee Mike Dean for a tackle on Phil Jones after just quarter of an hour of Monday's Premier League match with Manchester United. United ended up scoring two second-half goals to win 2-0. The decision incensed Hammers manager Slaven Bilic and the club have moved to have it reversed. "The FA have been informed of our intention to appeal," a club spokesman told PA.
(AFP (eng) 01/04/17)
Italy vowed Wednesday to increase deportations of migrants whose asylum requests have been rejected, after a riot in a reception centre sparked by the death of a young woman. The country, which has been on the frontline of migrants arriving across the Mediterranean from North Africa, is pushing for an agreement with Niger and a renewed deal with Tunisia to facilitate returns. "We have saved many lives but we cannot accept rule-breaking. We need to speed up deportations," Foreign Minister Angelino Alfano, the country's former interior minister, said in an interview with La Stampa daily. He was "working to tie up agreements which will reduce arrivals and prevent departures" from the coast of North Africa, he said after a record...
(Agence Ecofin 01/03/17)
Mohammed Bouderbali, the wali of the Kabyle wilaya, announced that proceedings would be initiated since only 27% of investment projects in the Tizi-Ouzou activity zones are effectively online. The proceedings, which aim to retrieve the unused areas, are a stepping stone towards sanitizing industrial lands in the region. “Out of 593 projects planned across 16 zones of activity of the wilaya, and whose developers received land plots, only 159 are effective. To tackle this situation which slows investment at the local level, the wilaya has initiated lawsuits to retrieve the lands awarded or sold
(BBC News Africa 01/03/17)
An electricity grid for the whole village Problem: A total of 1.3 billion people worldwide currently don't have electricity, according to Yale Environment 360. Getting people in rural areas on to the national grid is proving too difficult and traditional solar panels generate meagre amounts of energy. Solution: Steamaco makes solar and battery micro-grids which can work for a whole village. They are small electricity generation and distribution systems that operate independently of larger grids. How it works: Micro-grids are nothing new. The new part is that Steamaco's technology automates the regulation of electricity. So, if the system detects there will be a surge in demand for electricity, for example on a Saturday night when people want to start playing...
(AFP (eng) 01/01/17)
West Ham midfielder Sofiane Feghouli and defender Carl Medjani have been dropped as new Algeria coach Georges Leekens unveiled his 23-man squad for the Africa Cup of Nations on Sunday. Feghouli has scored 11 goals in 42 appearances for Algeria including a goal in the 2014 World Cup in Brazil which helped his country advance to the last 16. The 27-year-old, a reported target by French club Marseille, has however played a peripheral role for West Ham since his arrival in England last summer. Medjani, 31, who has 54 caps and plays in Spain for Leganes, is absent for the first time since the 2010 World Cup in South Africa.
(Voice of America 12/30/16)
2016 was predicted to be a tough year for African economies, and it delivered. Traditional economic leaders faltered this year amid a storm of falling commodity prices, unpredictable and destructive weather like droughts and floods across large swaths of the the continent. Slow economic growth in China, a major investor and trading partner, only added to their challenges. “This year, you’ve seen the two Africas: the commodity exporters going through tough times, while the non-commodity exporters being more resilient,” Nigerian economist Nonso Obikili, who researches Nigerian and sub-Saharan economic trends for Economic Research Southern Africa, told VOA. He says 2016 has been hard on African commodity giants as oil prices fell to lows not seen since the global financial crisis...
(AFP (eng) 12/29/16)
Algeria has adopted a 2017 budget that will see taxes raised to compensate for falling revenues from its key oil sector, officials said on Wednesday. The budget, signed by President Abdelaziz Bouteflika, is calculated on an oil price of $50 per barrel. Oil is the main source of revenue for the North African country. The budget announced Wednesday outlines raises in value-added tax and duty on alcohol and tobacco, petrol-based products as well as real estate and stamp duties. The budget forecasts an income of $51 billion (46 billion euros) and spending of $63 billion (56 billion euros). Despite cuts, it will spend $14 billion (13 billion euros) on welfare including subsidies on basic products, housing and health care support...

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