| Africatime
Sunday 30 April 2017
(Agence Ecofin 03/20/17)
At the Africa CEO Forum which opened this morning in Geneva, AFD Group – in partnership with the European Union – unveiled the “African Renewable Energy Scale-Up facility”, designed to boost private sector investment in on–grid and off-grid renewable energy production in Africa. In order to meet Africa’s constantly increasing energy requirements, support must be provided for mass development of the renewable energy technologies – especially solar energy – that will play such a key role over the coming years, given the recent drop in prices and the emergence of new innovative business models. The EU’s electrification funding initiative, “ElectriFI”, helps to harness and stimulate private sector investment to enhance access to renewable energy. More specifically, it focuses on poorly-served...
(Voice of America 03/18/17)
Each year, the University of Southern California hosts the African Global Economic and Development Summit, bringing delegations from Africa to meet with business leaders, government officials and others in the U.S. But this year, the African summit has no Africans. All were denied visas. Visa issues are not uncommon for people traveling from African nations. During her prior three summits, Mary Flowers saw a high percentage of her attendees unable to attain visas. "Usually we get 40 percent that get rejected but the others come," said Flowers, chair of the African Global Economic and Development Summit. "This year it was 100 percent. Every delegation. And it was sad to see, because these people were so disheartened." Flowers estimated that she...
(Voice of America 03/17/17)
One of the enduring legacies of the Barack Obama presidency will be the relationship built between the United States and young Africans. As part of Obama’s Young African Leaders Initiative (YALI), each year 1,000 young people from sub-Saharan Africa travel to the United States to spend six weeks at a U.S. college or university. The program will continue this summer. But building enduring relationships is a two-way street, and many in Africa want to see Americans coming to their continent as well. That’s what 26 Americans selected to participate in a Reciprocal Exchange program, a new component of the Mandela Washington Fellowship for Young African Leaders, are now planning to do. The U.S. Department of State partnered with IREX, a...
(AFP (eng) 03/16/17)
An Angolan court handed down jail terms Wednesday ranging from four to 10 years to eight men accused of seeking to topple the country's long-ruling president, Jose Eduardo dos Santos. The men were described as the ringleaders among 35 former fighters from the UNITA opposition party who allegedly tried to seize power in January 2016. The purported plot was reported by the Angolan media only last November, and 35 people were placed on trial in Luanda, the capital, just a few days later. Summarising his case last month, prosecutor Edelvasse Matias urged the court to hand down jail terms of six to eight years. "The accused sought to foment trouble against the Angolan state and physically harm President Eduardo dos...
(Bloomberg 03/16/17)
In its 100-year history, Anglo American Plc has endured commodities booms and busts, South African apartheid and bitter boardroom disputes. Now the British mining giant is threatened by the ambitions of Anil Agarwal, an Indian scrap-metal trader turned billionaire mining tycoon. In a surprise announcement on Wednesday, Agarwal said he plans to buy a stake of as much as 2 billion pounds ($2.4 billion) in Anglo, representing 13 percent of the company. Agarwal’s ultimate motivations and how he plans to wield power as the second-largest shareholder are still unknown. Still, there’s speculation that he’s likely to take an active role. Analysts including Citigroup Inc. say Agarwal could push for a break up of the company, one of the world’s top...
(Xinhuanet 03/16/17)
China's aid to the education sector in Africa is helping boost teacher training, a key component in skilling the population to fast track development, a UN official has said. Ann Therese Ndong-Jatta, Director of United Nations Educational, Scientific and Cultural Organization (UNESCO) Regional Office for Eastern Africa, in an interview recognized China's contribution to Africa's education sector over the years. "We value the initiative in teacher training in Uganda and other countries in Africa. This will revitalize the teaching profession," she said. China through UNESCO donated equipment to three teacher training institutions in Uganda on March 3. Figures from the Chinese embassy here show that 137 tutors were trained and 272 pieces of Information Communication and Technology and studio equipment...
(AFP (eng) 03/16/17)
Africa will host a Commonwealth Games one day despite the blow of Durban being stripped of hosting the 2022 edition, David Grevemberg, the chief executive of The Commonwealth Games Federation (CGF), told AFP. Durban lost the right to host the Games on Monday -- just 18 months after being awarded them -- when it failed to meet criteria laid down by the CGF, primarily over costs. "I wouldn't want to make a judgement call," Grevemberg told AFP on the sidelines of a briefing by 2018 Games hosts Gold Coast on Wednesday. "Durban has hosted some great events, it is a fantastic city and are wonderful warm hosts with bright ambitions and great aspirations. "However, it takes more than a municipality,...
(AFP (eng) 03/15/17)
Angolan authorities are considering deploying police outside cinemas to ensure that no one aged 16 or under gains entry to watch erotic drama "Fifty Shades Darker". The culture ministry said it was "working with institutions such as the national police... to enforce a ban on screening the film during the day and entry of 16-year-olds." The movie, a sequel to smash-hit "Fifty Shades of Grey", was released in Angola on February 9 without any age restrictions, reportedly attracting a large number of young fans. The films are an adaptation of E.L. James's bestselling trilogy of novels featuring sado-masochistic sex between a young woman and wealthy businessman. The culture ministry, in its statement released on Monday, urged "parents and guardians to...
(Maka Angola 03/15/17)
The net is closing around Angola's Vice-President, Manuel Vicente, the former CEO of the country's oil giant Sonangol and a man long accused of being a conduit for the diversion of oil revenues into international business deals linked to the Angolan President, his family and close associates. He faces charges in connection with the alleged suborning of a Portuguese prosecutor. Orlando Figueira, in 2013 to set aside an investigation into money-laundering involving the purchase of a US $4 million luxury apartment in Lisbon. Both the prosecutor and Vicente's lawyer, Paulo Blanco, have also been indicted on charges of violating court confidentiality regarding the investigation into the Angolan subsidiary (BESA) of the Banco de Espirito Santo (BES), which collapsed in 2014...
(Angola Press(En) 03/15/17)
Microsoft encourages governments to review the regulatory policies for the use of information technology as needed to improve the utilization of their cloud platforms. This positioning of the multinational was presented on Tuesday in Luanda by the director of marketing and operations of Microsoft Africa, Natasha Matos-Hemeningway, at the end of the Microsoft Cloud Forum, destined for entrepreneurs of different segments in Angola. According to Natasha Matos-Hemeningway, the improvement in the use of cloud platforms enables the latest features and services to be offered to citizens at an affordable price at all budgets. Cloud computing can boost economies, create jobs and promote innovation, besides it fosters greater social inclusion and raises the people's living standards by the low price of...
(The Wall Street Journal 03/15/17)
Ndalo Media founder Khanyi Dhlomo and Mara Group founder Ashish Thakkar on where the potential is and what’s blocking it How is innovation in Africa different from innovation in Silicon Valley? And how can innovation in Africa be encouraged? Dan Keeler, frontier-markets editor of The Wall Street Journal, discussed those questions with Khanyi Dhlomo, founder and chief executive of Ndalo Media, a publisher based in South Africa, and Ashish Thakkar, founder of Mara Group, a pan-African investment group with operations in banking, real estate, infrastructure and technology. Edited excerpts follow. MR. KEELER: What about innovation in Africa? Khanyi, what sort of things are you seeing that are inspiring you? MS. DHLOMO:There’s a lot of innovation happening in Africa. But it’s...
(Agence Ecofin 03/14/17)
The Land Policy Initiative (LPI), a joint programme of the tripartite consortium consisting of the African Union Commission (AUC), the African Development Bank (AfDB) and the United Nations Economic Commission for Africa (ECA) has launched a pilot project to track progress in implementing in the AU Declaration on land issues in Africa. This was revealed by the ECA in a press statement dated March 7. In collaboration with the International Food Policy Research Institute (IFPRI), the project will assess progress made in implementing the key decisions and commitments of the AU Declaration on Land adopted in July 2009 by the General Assembly of the pan-African institution. “We are to a large extent in unchartered waters given many of our Member...
(Reuters (Eng) 03/13/17)
The United Arab Emirates, one of the Middle East's largest economies, wants to expand trade ties with faster growing nations in Asia and Africa, a senior official said on Sunday. Rich Gulf Arab states are looking at ways to diversify their economies, including who they trade with, after more than two years of depressed oil prices forced a rethink of government spending. The pace of economic growth in Asian and sub-Saharan African economies has made them ideal partners, Abdullah al-Saleh, undersecretary for foreign trade and industry at the UAE ministry of the economy, told Reuters in an interview in Dubai. Asia's two largest economies China and India are expected to grow by 6.5 percent and 7.2 percent this year whilst...
(AFP (eng) 03/10/17)
In the beginning was .com, followed by a host of other .somethings, but on Friday, 32 years after the world's first domain name was registered, the African Union has launched .africa for the continent. Africans who want to register a website will be able to apply for a .africa domain name in the coming months, which outgoing AU commission chair Nkosazana Dlamini-Zuma said would allow the continent's people and businesses to better reach the world. "With .africa, I would say Africa has finally got its digital identity," said Dlamini-Zuma, who will next week hand power to Chadian Foreign Minister Moussa Faki Mahamat after four years at the helm of the continental body Sub-Saharan Africa has one of the lowest rates...
(Angola Press(En) 03/09/17)
The president of French oil company Total, Patrick Pouyanné, Tuesday in Houston (Texas), expressed confidence in the strength and robustness of the Angolan market. Patrick Pouyanné made these references to the press at the end of a meeting between delegations of Angolan oil company Sonangol, led by its chairperson of the Board of Directors, Isabel dos Santos, and France's Total, on the fringes of Ceraweek, which is one of the major experts meetings of the sector. He said that this was one of the aspects addressed at the meeting, noting that Angola is a good market for oil production and highlighted the fact that the company has been working in the Angolan market for some time. In this regard, he...
(Xinhuanet 03/09/17)
A critical mass of trained and well equipped community health workforce is key to easing the rising burden of infectious and noncommunicable diseases in Africa, experts said on Wednesday at a continental forum taking place in Nairobi. The experts, policymakers and campaigners who attended Africa Health Agenda International Conference agreed that optimal engagement of community health workers is key to revolutionize response to diseases ravaging the continent. Kenya's Cabinet Secretary for Health Cleopa Mailu in his opening remarks said that investments in training for community health workers will have multiplier impact on Africa's socioeconomic development. "We require highly skilled and motivated cadre of community health workforce to deal with a high diseases burden in disadvantaged settings in this continent. These...
(AFP (eng) 03/08/17)
Lawyers and human rights campaigners launched an initiative for African whistleblowers in Senegal on Tuesday, aimed at providing a secure means of exposing wrongdoing on the continent. African nations such as Somalia, South Sudan, Libya and Guinea-Bissau regularly appear at the very bottom of rankings such as Transparency International's Corruption Index, while none make it into the top 30. The Platform for the Protection of Whistleblowers in Africa (PPLAAF) will provide guidance from legal experts, secure submission of information and a hotline for potential informants, according to its founders. The initiative is the brainchild of Spanish superstar lawyer Baltasar Garzon -- who has defended Julian Assange of whistleblowing website WikiLeaks -- along with French lawyer William Bourdon, who worked on...
(The Independent 03/06/17)
Th term was coined by sceptical officials, worried about the importance given to Commonwealth trade deals ahead of Brexit negotiations. Plans by government ministers to boost trade links with African Commonwealth countries are being internally branded “empire 2.0” by sceptical officials who are worried about the importance being placed on such deals ahead of the UK’s negotiations of leaving the European Union (EU). International Trade Secretary Liam Fox is expected to promise to build better links with the whole of the 52 member countries of the Commonwealth when ministers from each country meet in London later this week. But as the UK is prepares itself to leave the European Union, The Times reports that British ministers are planning to talk...
(Maka Angola 03/03/17)
Although at 74 he is well over retirement age (65) and was expected to be forcibly retired this month, General António José Maria - the Angolan President's most faithful servant for nearly 40 years - is being allowed to remain at the head of the Military Intelligence and Security Service (SISM) until the elections at which President José Eduardo dos Santos will step down. His subordinates, who were expecting him to have left already, are increasingly unable to contain their frustration at his unorthodox leadership style, frequently marked by personal quirks which they say are unbecoming in a senior officer. General Zé Maria's latest 'wheeze' was to demand that all civilian employees engaged in courses of study must produce their...
(Bloomberg 03/03/17)
Polar Star Management Ltd., which runs one of the best-performing African and Middle East hedge fund over the past five years, plans to start a private-equity unit that will invest in agriculture to exploit rising demand for food. The Cape Town-based firm plans to use its own money to buy small farms and processing companies in South Africa this year, then increase efficiency through consolidation and better management, said Murray Derksen, a director at Polar Star. It aims to raise 1.5 billion rand ($115 million) for the fund, which may also buy commodities such as grains, while targeting an internal rate of return of 8 percent to 12 percent, he said. “We looked at the increase in corn demand globally,...

Pages