Friday 26 May 2017
(Reuters (Eng) 05/22/17)
Countries in sub-Saharan Africa need to get their budgets in order, diversify their economies and look after their poorest people. If they do that, there is no reason why the region cannot have the strong growth needed to meet the aspirations of a young and growing population. That, at least, is the three-pillared prescription from the International Monetary Fund as expressed by one of its top Africa researchers, Celine Allard, in an official IMF blog post and podcast. Allard co-authored the Fund's regional economic outlook, released earlier this month. It found that sub-Saharan economic growth hit only 1.4 percent last year, the lowest level in two decades and well off the 5-6 percent rates normally...
(Reuters (Eng) 05/19/17)
When rich countries wrote off billions of dollars of African debt in 2005, they hoped governments would think twice about borrowing again in costly foreign currencies. Over a decade later, most sub-Saharan African countries still rely on U.S. dollar-denominated debt to finance their economies. Some investors say this is sowing the seeds of future debt crises if local currencies devalue and make dollar debt repayments more expensive. Aside from South Africa and Nigeria, governments have not yet done enough to develop capital markets that would have allowed them to raise more money in their own currencies, investors say. United Nations trade body UNCTAD estimates that Africa's external debt stock rapidly grew to $443 billion by 2013 through bilateral borrowing, syndicated...
(Bloomberg 05/18/17)
Steinhoff International Holdings NV plans to list its African assets separately as the acquisitive retailer seeks a new prize for shareholders following this year’s failed merger talks with Shoprite Holdings Ltd. The company said Wednesday it will seek to list businesses including clothing retailer Pepkor and furniture chain JD Group Ltd. on the Johannesburg Stock Exchange, about 18 months after moving its primary listing to Frankfurt from the South African commercial hub. The new business could be worth as much...
(Bloomberg 05/16/17)
When the impoverished West African nation of Niger imposed a ban on donkey exports last year, a small community of traders just over the border in Nigeria was devastated. “Before the ban, you could see thousands of donkeys here,” said Mohammed Sani, a 45-year-old trader in the Nigerian town of Jibiya, as he wiped the sweat off his brow. “Now look at them: there’s no more than 50, crippling the business.” Donkeys are being slaughtered at an alarming pace to...
(Macau Daily Times 05/11/17)
Tax payments in Angola will be able to be made in foreign currency, under an amendment to the General Tax Code approved on Tuesday by the members of the Angolan parliament, Angolan news agency Angop reported. The document, which was discussed at the meeting of parliamentary committees on Constitutional and Legal Affairs and the Economy and Finance, is a government initiative that is justified, according to the Minister of Finance, “due to geopolitical and cyclical factors (…) which forces emerging...
(Macauhub 05/11/17)
Angolan bioenergy company Companhia de Bioenergia de Angola (Biocom) plans to produce 73,000 tonnes of sugar, 17,000 cubic metres of ethanol and 200 gigawatt hours of electricity this year, said the company’s production director, Marcos Brandão. The director of production also told the Angop news agency that the figures for 2017 represent an increase in production compared to 2016, when the company produced 52,000 tonnes of sugar, 14,000 cubic metres of ethanol and 100 gigawatts of energy. To increase production,...
(Voice of America 05/05/17)
As Africa grapples with a severe drought, and famine threatens millions of people, experts at the World Economic Forum on Africa this week in the South African city of Durban say food security needs to be a major part of discussions on advancing the continent economically. The annual World Economic Forum in Switzerland is usually a high-powered event, but at this week’s Africa meeting of the international organization, the continent’s big players are welcoming the humble farmer, now known as...
(Xinhuanet 05/04/17)
The World Economic Forum (WEF) Africa Competitiveness Report 2017 released in Durban Thursday called for urgent policy reforms if the continent intends to create more jobs for its growing young population. According to the report issued at the 27th WEF on Africa, fewer than one-quarter of the 450 million new jobs required in the next 20 years will be created if current policies remain unchanged. The report called for structural reforms in the economies to create more jobs for the...
(Bloomberg 05/02/17)
Saudi Aramco is seeking to boost its fuel-trading volume by more than a third as the world’s biggest crude exporter expands its capacity to refine oil to grab a bigger share of growing markets in Asia and Africa. Aramco, as Saudi Arabian Oil Co. is known, is building refineries in the kingdom and in Asia to help it increase sales and purchases of gasoline, diesel and other products to more than 2 million barrels a day, said Ibrahim Al-Buainain, chief...
(Mining Weekly 04/28/17)
Angolan oil minister José Maria Botelho de Vasconcelos said on Thursday his country was more than fully complying with Opec production cuts, and that he believed a deal to curb output would be extended beyond June. "Yes I think so," de Vasconcelos said at an industry event in Paris when asked whether the deal would be extended at the group's meeting in Vienna on May 25. He added that Angola was implementing more than 100% of the cuts it committed...
(Macauhub 04/28/17)
Non-resident foreign workers in Angola can once again be paid in foreign currency, not just in kwanzas, according to presidential decree 78/17, of 24 April, repealing another decree from 6 March. The new decree stipulates that “the value and currency of the remuneration of foreign non-resident workers are freely agreed between the employer and the worker,” in compliance with the general principles set out in the General Labour Law and new legislation. The decree of 6 March indicated that Angolan...
(Macauhub 04/27/17)
The loss of control of Banco de Fomento Angola led BPI from a profit of 45.8 million euros in the first quarter of 2016 to losses of 122.3 million euros in the same period of 2017, according to the quarterly results presented on Wednesday. The impact of the sale of a 2.0% stake taking its stake down to 49.1% and consequent loss of control of the bank was a negative 212.3 million euros, and without this impact BPI would have...
(Macauhub 04/27/17)
The VistaWater company won a tender to explore and manage the water supply system in Sumbe, the capital of Kwanza Sul province, in Angola, worth approximately 3.5 million euros, the company said in a statement. VistaWater is 45% owned by Portuguese group Indaqua – Indústria e Gestão de Águas, in turn 50.06% owned by Israeli group Miya, which in February 2016 paid 60 million euros for the stake held by Portuguese construction company Mota-Engil. The contract entered into with the...
(Macauhub 04/27/17)
Twenty-three new diamond, gold, phosphate, iron ore, copper and natural stone exploration projects are due to begin in Angola in the short and medium term, the Minister of Geology and Mining, Francisco Queiroz said on Wednesday in Luanda. The minister, who was speaking at the opening session of the 6th Consultative Council of the Ministry of Geology and Mines, did not quantify the amounts related to each project but said five were for diamond exploration, four for gold, two for...
(Business Day Ghana 04/27/17)
There are currently 960 million mobile subscriptions across Africa – an 80 percent penetration rate among the continent’s population. Internet penetration is at 18 percent with 216 million internet users, according to the latest Jumia mobile trend report for Africa. The 2017 edition of the African Mobile Trends Paper is the third white paper presentation from Jumia delving into mobile trends across Africa and specifically Nigeria. The study takes a look at the how the market has democratised mobile internet...
(Xinhuanet 04/26/17)
The Belt and Road (B&R) Initiative is a golden opportunity to bring about regional integration and sustainable economic growth for Africa, said Berhane Gebre-Christos, special envoy of the Ethiopian Prime Minister, on Tuesday. The special envoy made the remarks at the opening of a seminar organized on the B&R Initiative in Ethiopia's capital Addis Ababa. Welcoming the initiative, the special envoy said he is looking forward to the expected effects of the initiative. "The B&R is a project that will...
(Bloomberg 04/20/17)
WorldRemit Ltd., a British money-transfer operator, sees revenue from transactions involving Africans doubling by 2020 as more people on the continent access mobile-payment platforms and expatriates send cash home. The seven-year-old company, in which Facebook Inc.-backer Accel Partners LP invested $40 million in 2014, will this year open a regional office in South Africa, its largest market on the continent in terms of money-transfer value, founder and Chief Executive Officer Ismail Ahmed said in an interview. Another site will start...
(Bloomberg 04/19/17)
The World Bank cut its growth projection for sub-Saharan Africa this year because of weak expansion in the region’s three biggest economies. The area’s gross domestic product will expand 2.6 percent in 2017, the bank said in an emailed copy of its Africa Pulse report Wednesday. That compares with a January projection of 2.9 percent and matches the International Monetary Fund’s prediction released this week. “The region’s three largest economies -- Angola, Nigeria, and South Africa -- are projected to...
(Angola Press(En) 04/19/17)
The construction of a railway heading to Luanda's new International airport has started four months ago with ground-levelling works from kilometro 30 locality in Viana municipality to Bungo, Luanda Port. The construction works are being carried out in three fronts and are set to be concluded within 18 months. The Luanda's new international airport will have the capacity to provide services to 10 million passengers per year, its partial conclusion and inauguration is due to take place this year.
(AFP (eng) 04/18/17)
The International Monetary Fund on Tuesday forecast 2.6 percent growth in sub-Saharan Africa this year, aided by a modest recovery in large economies South Africa, Nigeria and Angola. "Growth is projected to rise to 2.6 percent in 2017 and 3.5 percent in 2018, largely driven by specific factors in the largest economies, which faced challenging macroeconomic conditions in 2016," the IMF said its latest World Economic Outlook report. A slump in commodity price in 2016 and devastating drought had affected...

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