Sunday 25 June 2017
(Reuters (Eng) 05/13/17)
Tackling climate change in Africa could help resolve multiple problems ravaging the continent, from drought to refugees and violence, the head of the African Union said on Friday. The mix of global warming with economic woes and political conflicts keeps peace from taking hold, said Moussa Faki Mahamat, the Union's new chairman, at Chatham House, an international think tank. "There is a link between climate change and prosperity, as well as peace, on the continent," Mahamat said in French with an interpreter. "Africa is among the least polluting continents, and yet it is the continent that suffers most," he said. Mahamat, the former foreign minister of Chad, was chosen to chair the 55-member, Addis Ababa-based organization in January. In Africa's...
(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 economies like Angola to renew their efforts.” Minister Archer Mangueira also said that it was a one-off amendment aimed at raising more resources in foreign currency, reducing pressure on the balance of payments and spending abroad. The minister also said...
(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, Biocom has prepared 18,000 hectares of sugarcane, although it has planned to plant an area of 25,000 hectares by the end of the year, said Brandão. The Biocom plant, located in the municipality of Cacuso in the province of Malanje,...
(Reuters (Eng) 05/10/17)
Thousands of people have fled fighting in Democratic Republic of Congo over the past month and sought refuge in neighboring Angola, a provincial governor said, an exodus that is straining resources in villages along the border. Ernesto Muangala said officials had counted more than 20,000 refugees in his Lunda Norte province, almost double the number recorded a month ago. All had fled clashes between Congolese government and militia forces that erupted in Congo's Kasai-Central province in July, then spread to four other provinces. The clashes in the DRC pose the most serious threat yet to the rule of President Joseph Kabila, whose failure to step down at the end of his constitutional mandate in December was followed by a wave...
(Fox News 05/10/17)
After five years of no major attacks on merchant vessels, piracy around the Horn of Africa seemed to be on hiatus. Acts of piracy in those treacherous waters have fallen sharply since 2012, according to statistics released by the United States Navy. The Navy credits aggressive patrolling by international forces and increased vigilance by the commercial shipping industry for the decrease. However, in the past month, Somali pirates have intercepted five ships, raising concerns that piracy has returned to the Indian Ocean, beginning with the kidnapping of a Sri Lankan crew from the Aris 13 oil tanker on March 13th (they were later released without a ransom). Nobody thinks the problem will end until a stable government is restored in...
(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 the “agripreneur.” Agricultural economist Paul Makube, with South Africa’s First National Bank, told VOA it makes sense to talk about farming when discussing building competitive markets, and boosting innovation and technology. “For business to prosper, you need a situation where...
(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 youth entering the market. African countries have to prioritize improving infrastructure, skills and adoption of new technology and quality of institutions. To improve competitiveness in the short term Africa needs to increase housing construction through investment, better urban planning and...
(Voice of America 05/03/17)
African military expenditures have finally slowed down after more than a decade of steady increases, according to a new report on global defense spending. The main reason, the report found, is a drop in oil prices. “The sharp decreases in oil prices has affected quite a number of African countries, namely South Sudan and Angola. This has kind of driven almost the entire regional trend,” said Nan Tian, a researcher at the Stockholm International Peace Research Institute’s (SIPRI) Arms and Military Expenditure Program, the organization that authored the report. The SIPRI report found military spending in Africa in 2016 was down by 1.3 percent from the previous year and totaled about $37.9 billion. Despite the drop, Africa’s military spending remains...
(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 executive officer of Saudi Aramco’s trading unit, Saudi Aramco Products Trading Co. Owning refineries gives the unit, known as Aramco Trading Co., options for buying and selling fuel that some of its competitors don’t have. “The key is that you...
(Reuters (Eng) 04/29/17)
The fall armyworm - which decimates fields as it marches ever forward - has spread to Angola as the caterpillar eats its way through southern Africa, a U.N. agency said. With Angola the latest country affected, only Lesotho and island nations in the region have escaped the pest, which devours crops in its path, U.N. officials said. Its spread has undermined hopes for a better harvest this year, they added, with swathes of southern, eastern and western Africa infested. "Now even Angola has confirmed (an outbreak)," said Joyce Mulila Mitti, a crop production and protection officer at the Food and Agriculture Organization (FAO) of the United Nations. In a statement, the FAO said it carried out a joint mission with...
(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 to under the deal reached last year between the Organisation of the Petroleum Exporting Countries and other producers led by Russia. Under the deal, the producers agreed to cut output by 1.8-million barrels per day for six months from January...
(Eye Witness News 04/28/17)
Officials said only Lesotho and island nations in the region have escaped the pest, which devours crops in its path. The fall armyworm - which decimates fields as it marches ever forward - has spread to Angola as the caterpillar eats its way through southern Africa, UN officials said on Thursday. With Angola the latest country affected, only Lesotho and island nations in the region have escaped the pest, which devours crops in its path, the officials said. Its spread has undermined hopes for a better harvest this year, they added, with swathes of southern, eastern and western Africa infested. "Now even Angola has confirmed (an outbreak)," said Joyce Mulila Mitti, a crop production and protection officer at the Food...
(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 companies could only hire non-resident foreign workers for a maximum period of 36 months, with payments made exclusively in kwanzas, with the central bank deciding on the amount of transfers abroad. Non-resident foreign worker are citizens of another nationality, “not...
(Voice of America 04/28/17)
A low-cost and widely available drug could save the lives of 1 in 3 mothers who would otherwise bleed to death after childbirth, according to a new study. Severe bleeding, known as postpartum hemorrhage, or PPH, is the leading cause of maternal death worldwide, killing more than 100,000 women every year. Even for mothers who survive, it is a painful and traumatic experience. The world's poorest countries, especially in Africa and India, are the worst hit. Drug from 1960s But there is new hope. In the 1960s, Japanese researchers developed a drug called tranexamic acid, which works by stopping blood clots from breaking down. But they could not persuade doctors to try the drug for treating PPH. The London School...
(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 seen a positive result of 90 million euros. The sale of the stake, required by the European Central Bank, “meant that Banco de Fomento Angola ceased to be consolidated in the accounts of Banco BPI, becoming recognised only by the...
(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 National Directorate of Energy and Water has a completion period of 12 months and aims to “operate and manage all water supply infrastructure in the city,” including a water treatment plant, six tanks, a distribution network with 6,000 links and...
(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 iron ore, two for phosphates, one for copper and nine for ornamental rocks. Queiroz also said that these projects will contribute to overcoming the economic and financial crisis by diversifying the sources of tax revenues and increasing foreign exchange resources...
(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 use, the consumer behaviours driving increased smartphone adoption and the role of mobile brands, mobile operators and m-commerce in creating a synergy of an enhanced customer experience. This year’s Mobile Africa Study was carried out in 15 African countries which...
(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 affect millions of people, and it will be one of the most important issues of the 21st century," he said, adding that the comprehensive approach of China means that the aspirations and development strategies of all countries involved will be...
(AFP (eng) 04/25/17)
Angola's cabinet said on Monday that elections will be held on August 23 to choose a successor to President Eduardo dos Santos after 38 years of iron-fisted rule. Dos Santos, 74, has been in power since 1979 and has announced that he will not contest the election. His ruling party's presidential candidate will be the current defence minister. "At the suggestion of the president of the republic... the nation's cabinet on Monday approved August 23 as the date for Angola's general election," cabinet spokesman Joao Maria de Sousa said in a press conference broadcast on national radio. Dos Santos must now formally trigger the legal process to stage the polls which will see up to 9.6 million Angolans cast ballots...

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