| Africatime
Sunday 30 April 2017
(AFP (eng) 04/11/17)
El Nino, the cyclical climatic phenomenon in the Pacific Ocean, is linked to shifts in cholera cases in Africa, providing an early warning that could save lives, scientists said Monday. During the years when El Nino is warming the eastern Pacific, East Africa has about 50,000 additional cholera cases a year, new research from the Johns Hopkins Bloomberg School of Public Health suggests. By contrast, the years when El Nino is not active, there were 30,000 fewer cholera cases in East Africa, according to the study published Monday in the journal Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences. The researchers analyzed more than 17,000 annual observations from 3,710 different locations between 2000 and 2014 in Africa, which has the most...
(Bloomberg 04/07/17)
Heineken NV’s latest quest to seize a greater share of emerging markets has the brewer on a collision course with Groupe Castel in one of Africa’s fastest-growing economies. Officially opened on Wednesday, the Brassivoire brewery is the product of a joint venture with CFAO SA and cost 150 million euros ($160 million) to build. Located 24 kilometers (15 miles) north of the commercial capital, Abidjan, the facility is already producing Ivoire lager, a brand the world’s second-largest brewer is using to compete with market leader Castel’s Flag and Solibra Bock. “Ivory Coast is a burgeoning country,” Chief Executive Officer Jean-François van Boxmeer said in an interview at the plant. “It’s one of the fastest-growing economies in the world. Government policies...
(Reuters (Eng) 04/07/17)
Access to off-grid solar energy in rural areas of Africa goes beyond lighting up homes - it also enables people to connect to the wider world and boosts their economic prospects, said the head of one of the continent's biggest solar companies. Azuri Technologies' entry level solar system - for which customers pay a one-off installation fee, then use scratch cards or mobile phone payments to top up on a weekly or monthly basis - provides eight hours of lighting each day. Having power at home for the first time encourages customers to also buy mobile phones, radios and televisions, giving them regular access to the media and the internet, said Simon Bransfield-Garth, chief executive officer of UK-based Azuri. "This...
(Graphic Online 04/05/17)
The pollution of water bodies in the country through the activities of illegal miners is posing a threat to the quality of water in neighbouring Cote d’Ivoire. The situation, according to the Minister of Environment, Science, Technology and Innovation (MESTI), Professor Kwabena Frimpong-Boateng, had the potential to spark a misunderstanding between the sister countries if care was not taken to stop galamsey. “I went to Cote d’Ivoire last week only to be welcomed by the unpleasant news about how the effects of galamsey in Ghana have resulted in the pollution of some of their water sources. “They find it difficult to even treat the water to make it wholesome, and this is bad for us as a country because it...
(Voice of America 04/05/17)
A Red Cross report says African countries are failing their internally displaced people. Reversing that trend was the subject of a high level meeting of the International Red Cross and the African Union that wrapped up Tuesday in Zimbabwe. Africa has about 13 million internally displaced people, a third of the global number of IDPs, and more than double the amount of refugees on the continent. By definition, refugees flee across a national border, while IDPs leave their homes but stay within their own country. African Union Commission head of humanitarian affairs, refugees and displaced people Olabisi Dare says the situation of IDPs in Africa is very critical, dire and worsening. "...The issues that are generating internal displacement [are] multiplying...
(Bloomberg 04/04/17)
Ivory Coast’s biggest online retailer will enable consumers to buy goods from international markets for the first time next month as it seeks to tap a shopping boom in one of sub-Saharan Africa’s fastest-growing economies. Jumia, an internet platform whose investors include Berlin-based Rocket Internet SE and Goldman Sachs Group Inc., is expanding its Ivory Coast operation by adding imports from Asia and Europe, managing director for the country, Francis Dufay, said in an interview in the commercial capital, Abidjan. The retailer is also recruiting local shopkeepers to sell directly via its platform as “the more vendors you have, the wider your assortment of goods and the more interesting you become for a wide range of people,” he said. Ivory...
(Bloomberg 04/04/17)
The scores of giant potholes that scar the roads from commercial capital Abidjan to Daloa in the heart of Ivory Coast’s cocoa belt have become deep, muddy puddles, filled by heavy tropical showers. While drivers making the tortuous journey from the Atlantic coast into the hot interior have reason to curse the wet weather, for farmers in the world’s largest cocoa producer the rains mean the prospect of another record crop. "We’ve got beneficial rains this season," said Abdoulaye Baro, head of the Coopago cocoa cooperative in the town of Goudougo. "There’s lots of cocoa. This year it’s really good." The West African country’s crop will reach 2 million metric tons for the first time ever, according to a Bloomberg...
(Financial Times 04/04/17)
Countries should develop policies to attract labour-intensive production leaving China. China’s initial wave of investments in Africa focused on natural resource extraction. Their demand for metals and energy was so large that it actually boosted global commodity prices overall, which in turn accelerated growth across the African continent. These times of China propping up global commodity prices are now over, as it has built up excess capacity in many sectors and now faces slow investment growth. This lower demand has contributed to the overall slump in global commodity prices since 2014, making it unlikely that China will again fulfil the role of driving commodity prices. Rather, its position has now shifted to becoming the largest exporter of capital. This provides...
(Bloomberg 04/03/17)
Ivory Coast’s cocoa regulator pointed to speculators and prospects for a glut as the reason for a slump in futures that forced the nation to cut the price it pays farmers. There was something it didn’t blame: Itself. Le Conseil du Cafe-Cacao also said a volatile pound and defaults by local exporters contributed to a plunge in international futures. But there’s frustration that the CCC’s slow response to the crisis gave speculators more reason to short prices, on expectations that beans would have to be resold at a time the market was forecast to return to surplus. There was a “lack of response from Ivory Coast,” said Youssouf Carius, an economist based in the commercial capital, Abidjan. “When the market...
(The East African 04/03/17)
Nairobi — The 2017 Mo Ibrahim Foundation annual Governance Weekend will be held in Marrakech - Morocco from April 7-9. A press release from the Foundation identifies the Palmeraie Resort as the venue for this year's meeting. The three-day event brings together prominent African and Africa-focused leaders, civil society representatives, multilateral and regional institutions and Africa's international partners to identify policy challenges and possible solutions. Violent extremism The conversation is normally extended to a wider audience through music, art and sport at major public events, showcasing some of Africa's brightest talent. The Foundation has released a report that sets the stage for high-level discussions in Morocco. The priority areas for the Marrakech talks, according to the report, include violent extremism...
(Bloomberg 03/31/17)
Ivory Coast cut the price paid to cocoa farmers by 36 percent, a blow to growers in the world’s top producer who have benefited from increases each year since the country reformed the industry in 2012. Farmers will get 700 CFA francs ($1.14) a kilogram for the smaller of two annual harvests that starts next month, said Bruno Kone, a spokesman for the government in Abidjan. That’s down from 1,100 CFA francs for the main crop. The decision comes at a bad time for the government of President Alassane Ouattara. An army mutiny at the beginning of the year and a subsequent strike by public workers has weakened confidence in the economy and the price cut will affect an estimated...
(Bloomberg 03/30/17)
Ivory Coast is considering reducing its cocoa-export tax as the world’s top producer seeks to ship out a record crop, a person familiar with the matter said. The government may reduce the levy from the current rate of 22 percent, according to the person, who asked not to be identified because the information is private. Budget Minister Abdourahmane Cisse didn’t answer calls seeking comment, while a government spokesman said the state is doing all it can to ensure a smooth running of the crop campaign. Weak Sahara desert winds and beneficial rains before the start of the smaller of two annual harvests next month has aided crops, with the International Cocoa Organization predicting record output of 1.9 million metric tons...
(Xinhuanet 03/30/17)
The African Union (AU) is extremely appalled by the attacks against African students in Noida and other cities in India. The pan-African bloc has deplored the violence unleashed during the riot that started on Monday targeting Africans of various nationalities, particularly Nigerians, which resulted in loss of innocent lives and serious injuries, the AU said in a statement. The attacks have also resulted in the displacement of many Africans from their normal places of residence, thereby putting their lives in serious danger, it said. AU has expressed heartfelt condolence to the families of the deceased; and it wished speedy recovery to all those who have sustained injuries. AU has called on the Indian authorities to provide all necessary support to...
(Reuters (Eng) 03/29/17)
A court in Ivory Coast acquitted former First Lady Simone Gbagbo of crimes against humanity and war crimes charges linked to her role in a 2011 civil war that killed about 3,000 people, state television announced on Tuesday. The trial, the West African nation's first for crimes against humanity, was held in an Ivorian court after the government rejected her extradition to the International Criminal Court (ICC) in The Hague. Gbagbo, who has often been absent from the trial on complaints of poor health, was not present for the verdict. Her husband, ex-president Laurent Gbagbo, is standing trial before the ICC on similar charges connected to the brief conflict, which was triggered by his refusal to accept defeat to Ouattara...
(AFP (eng) 03/28/17)
An Ivory Coast jury on Tuesday acquitted former first lady Simone Gbagbo of crimes against humanity during the 2010-11 post-election crisis in a stunning verdict after the prosecution had sought to jail her for life. "A majority of the jury declared Simone Gbagbo not guilty of the crimes of which she has been accused, pronounced her acquittal and ordered that she be immediately freed if she is not being held for other reasons, " said the head of the country's top criminal court, judge Kouadjo Boiqui. Once dubbed Ivory Coast's "Iron Lady," Gbagbo, who was not in court Tuesday, is already serving a 20-year sentence for "endangering state security." The prosecution in summing up its case against the 67-year-old wife...
(AFP (eng) 03/28/17)
FIFA said Tuesday it had launched an investigation into incidents which led to the abandonment of a friendly match between Ivory Coast and Senegal in Paris following a series of pitch invasions. The sides were level at 1-1 late Monday when French referee Tony Chapron called off the match in the 88th minute as fans from both sides flooded onto the pitch. Images showed rowdy supporters chasing across the pitch after climbing over fences while one fan was seen tackling a player in the middle of the pitch. "We are currently analysing and gathering information concerning the incidents, "a FIFA spokesman said. He added that "should it be considered appropriate, disciplinary proceedings may be opened". Liverpool forward Sadio Mane had...
(Bloomberg 03/28/17)
Ivory Coast’s government said it is seeking more assistance from the International Monetary Fund to support the nation’s 2017 budget after cocoa prices slumped, hurting the finances of the world’s biggest grower. “With cocoa prices falling, we have some new budget constraints,” government spokesman Bruno Kone said by phone from the commercial capital, Abidjan, on Sunday. Ivory Coast will issue the request as representatives of the IMF visits the West African nation until the first week of April for a review of the country’s three-year extended credit facility agreement of about $660 million. Cocoa futures in London have slumped by about a third since reaching a six-year high in July. Earlier this year, the government tried to defuse military and...
(AFP (eng) 03/28/17)
Numerous pitch invasions forced Monday's friendly between Ivory Coast and Senegal in Paris to be abandoned before full-time. The sides were level at 1-1 when French referee Tony Chapron called off the match in the 88th minute as fans from both sides flooded onto the pitch. Liverpool forward Sadio Mane had given Senegal the lead on 67 minutes from the penalty spot but Fulham's Cyriac Gohi Bi equalised for the Ivorians just four minutes later. But after the latest in a number of pitch invasions, Chapron had had enough and the game was brought to a premature end.
(Voice of America 03/28/17)
The World Health Organization and U.N. children's fund are spearheading a massive immunization campaign across Africa to rid the continent of the last vestiges of polio. Tens of thousands of health workers will fan out across 13 central and western African countries to vaccinate more than 116 million children under age five against the crippling disease. The U.N. agencies report more than 190,000 volunteers, traveling on foot or bicycle, will go house to house across all cities, towns, and villages in 13 countries to vaccinate every child under age five against polio. The synchronized vaccination campaign, one of the largest ever conducted in Africa, will run from March 25-28. Director of Polio Eradication at the World Health Organization Michel Zaffran...
(Xinhuanet 03/27/17)
There is need for China and its African allies to kick start a new dialogue aimed at revitalizing wildlife and ecological conservation in the world's second largest continent, a conservationist has told Xinhua in an interview. Kaddu Sebunya, president of African Wildlife Foundation (AWF), told Xinhua that Beijing is an indispensable partner in efforts to protect Africa's iconic wildlife species that are grappling with human and climatic induced threats to their survival. "China is playing a big role in Africa's economic development and would like to see it direct more support towards protection of wildlife and vital ecosystems in the continent," Sebunya said. Sebunya noted that China's growing economic and diplomat clout place it at a vantage position to help...

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