Sunday 23 July 2017
(Reuters (Eng) 07/20/17)
JOHANNESBURG (Reuters) - Africa's major central banks are entering an easing cycle as they try to stimulate growth after months of drought, austerity drives and confidence issues across the continent, a Reuters poll found on Thursday. Much of southern and eastern Africa is still recovering after an El Niño-related drought wilted crops last year. Poor business confidence in South Africa and foreign exchange restrictions in Nigeria have also hampered growth. "We expect that African monetary policy is entering a widespread and protracted period of policy easing. This will provide a boost to growth," said John Ashbourne, Africa analyst at Capital Economics. Ghana, which agreed a three-year fiscal discipline deal with the International Monetary Fund in...
(Agence Ecofin 07/19/17)
The FINACTU Group has just finalized the actuarial valuation and certification of the technical commitments for the Mutuelle Agricole Marocaine D'Assurance (MAMDA), the Mutuelle Centrale Marocaine d’Assurance (MCMA), and the Mutuelle Ataamine Chaabi (MAC). Since 2011, FINACTU has conducted an annual audit of the technical commitments of these mutual insurance companies and produced an actuarial certification of the provisions stated on the balance sheet. Actuarial liabilities constitute a major item in the balance sheet of insurance companies. In each of these companies, their valuation is at the heart of the assessment of solvency: in light of their significance, even a seemingly trivial error in their valuation may...
(Bloomberg 07/19/17)
Vodacom Group Ltd. sees the expansion of mobile-banking services into new markets in sub-Saharan Africa as a top priority following a shareholder vote to rubber stamp its purchase of a 35 percent stake in Safaricom Ltd., Kenya’s biggest company. “We will use Safaricom to enter other markets where neither Vodacom nor Safaricom are,” Chief Executive Officer Shameel Joosub said in an interview at the wireless carrier’s annual general meeting in Johannesburg on Tuesday. The two businesses have a combined 30...
(Xinhuanet 07/18/17)
Egyptian Trade and Industry Minister Tareq Qabil said on Tuesday that Egypt and Morocco have agreed to form an action group to promote economic cooperation. The agreement came after Qabil met with his Moroccan counterpart to discuss economic cooperation in several areas to boost integration between the two countries, the minister said in a statement. The two countries will tackle challenges facing trade and seek means of enhancing cooperation, he said. The talks were also about investment opportunities in Egypt,...
(Agence Ecofin 07/18/17)
The African Development Bank (AfDB) will provide Morocco $200 million for the first stage of its programme to accelerate industrialization. Agreement for the financing was signed last Friday, July 14th, in Abidjan, by the Moroccan ambassador near Ivory Coast, Abdelmalek Kettani, and Célestin Monga, Chief Economist and Vice President, AfDB, in charge of economic governance and knowledge management. Also present at the signing ceremony was Morocco’s representative at AfDB, Abdelmajid Mellouki. Steered by the Moroccan ministry of Industry, the 2015-2020...
(Agence Ecofin 07/17/17)
Car maker Faurecia just inaugurated a new car seats factory in Morocco. Located in Salé, the infrastructure which cost about €16 million will generate 1,300 jobs. According to L’usine Nouvelle, the plant will produce every day 10,000 leather and textile seat-coverings for 3008 Peugeot and Opel Grandland X models. With the new infrastructure, Faurecia now has two plants in Morocco, including Kenitra’s. Next year, a third will be commissioned, the firm revealed. Faurecia has 103,000 employees worldwide and recorded in...
(Xinhuanet 07/17/17)
Africa is making progress towards the establishment of a trade zone by Oct. 30 that will cover approximately half of the continent's member states. The Common Market for the Eastern and Southern Africa (COMESA) Director of Trade and Customs, Francis Mangeni, said in a commentary published in the Star Newspaper on Monday that so far 19 of the 26 countries involved have signed the agreement. "Three outstanding annexes had meant the tripartite agreement was not complete and this was advanced...
(APA 07/14/17)
The Moroccan ambassador in Mozambique, Abdelali Rahhl says his country would like to develop with Mozambique agricultural cooperation in an integrated perspective, APA has learnt. The diplomat said his country's intention is to strengthen business relations with Mozambique in the areas of fertilizer production, training of agricultural engineers and mechanization of agriculture. Advertisment "We would like to develop agricultural cooperation with Mozambique in an integrated perspective, first, with regard to fertilizers, following the training of...
(AFP (eng) 07/13/17)
Morocco's phosphate industry giant OCP on Thursday accused South Africa of "political piracy" by detaining a Moroccan cargo vessel loaded with phosphate from the disputed territory of Western Sahara. The South African judiciary had "passed an eminently political decision and committed a gross abuse of power", Morocco's state-run group said in a statement. The 34,000-tonne ship bound for New Zealand via Port Elizabeth in South Africa has been blocked from sailing since the start of May following a court application...
(AFP (eng) 07/12/17)
Egypt and Morocco's airlines have said a ban against carry-on laptops on US-bound flights has been lifted, leaving only two Saudi airports under the restrictions put in place in March. Morocco's Royal Air Maroc said in a statement Wednesday that the ban, imposed amid fears the Islamic State group was developing a bomb concealed in electronics, would be lifted as of Thursday. EgyptAir said late Tuesday that the United States had also lifted the ban for the carrier's flights to...
(Bloomberg 07/10/17)
Many cell phone companies are rethinking their headlong rush into the continent. Only Orange is staying the course. Back when African countries were auctioning off mobile licenses by the boatload to serve the region’s young, tech-savvy population, investing in the continent’s fast-growing economies seemed like a no-brainer. Some of the world’s biggest wireless carriers rushed in. Now they’re wondering if they made a mistake. Increasing government and regulatory scrutiny, as well as a lack of expansion opportunities in sub-Saharan Africa,...
(Agence Ecofin 07/03/17)
What if land was the answer to the protests currently taking place in Al Hoceima ? Well, it seems the government believes so, according to the minister of agriculture, Aziz Akhannouch, who made the announcement while commencing a visit in the region last Thursday. Others issues brought up by the official on that occasion include land property in rural areas which is one of the main sources of conflicts and anger of protestors. “In Béni Amaret, the minister attended a...
(APA 06/27/17)
The African Development Bank (AfDB) provided Morocco a $88 million loan to support its National Programme to Promote the Economic Usage of Irrigation Water (PAPNEEI 2). The scheme’s total cost is $96.9 million of which government provides $8.9 million. The initiative which is to last six years (2017-2022) aims to improve the living conditions of rural populations and agricultural production through the sound and sustainable management of irrigation water. In details, it will cover an area 25,758ha regrouping 10,250 farms in the river basins of Oum Errabia and Loukkos in the North...
(AFP (eng) 06/21/17)
Morocco will begin the process of moving towards a flexible exchange rate system gradually in the second half of this year, the governor of the country's central bank said Tuesday. The North African country has had a fixed exchange rate regime for the dirham since the 1970s. "There will be no devaluation. We are not in a situation of currency crisis," central bank chief Abdellatif Jouahri told reporters. "The International Monetary Fund (which has helped the Moroccan authorities in the...
(Others 06/20/17)
Moroccan authorities have arrested more people in relation to anti-government protests in the North African Arab country. Lawyers and rights groups said on Tuesday that more activists had been arrested over involvement in protests across Morocco. “There are arrests on a daily basis,” said Abdessadak Elbouchattaoui, a lawyer, adding that, “On average, there are about four arrests a day, sometimes reaching 10 a day.” Morocco's Ministry of Justice would not comment on reports about the growing number of arrests. It...
(Others 06/20/17)
Political demonstrations are rare in Morocco but protests are spreading. Moroccan authorities have arrested more activists involved in the country's biggest political protests since the Arab Spring, lawyers and rights groups said on Tuesday. For months, demonstrators have taken to the streets around the northern city of Al-Hoceima to vent frustration over the economic, social and political problems of a kingdom that presents itself as a beacon of stability in a turbulent region. Political demonstrations are rare in Morocco, where...
(AFP (eng) 06/12/17)
German Chancellor Angela Merkel will on Monday meet African leaders in Berlin on initiatives aiming to reduce the poverty and conflict driving a mass migrant influx to Europe. The idea is to team up African nations willing to reform with private investors who would bring business and jobs to a continent where instability or graft often scare off foreign companies. Merkel is hosting the initiative as part of Germany's presidency of the Group of 20 powerful economies, whose leaders meet in the northern port of Hamburg a month later. Invited to Berlin are Egyptian President Abdel Fattah al-Sisi and the leaders of Ghana, Ivory Coast...
(APA 05/23/17)
Morocco is increasingly asserting itself as a leading investor in Africa, with some $8 billion in investments announced in 2015-2016, the 16th edition of the 2017 African Economic Outlook Report indicates on Tuesday. This performance, notes the document, is a sign of the capacity gained by Moroccan firms in financial services, telecommunications and manufacturing. The majority of Moroccan investment in Africa covers Ethiopia, following the signing of an agreement in November 2016 between the Moroccan Office of Phosphates (OCP) and the Ethiopian government for more than $3 billion for the construction of a fertilizer plant. Cote d'Ivoire is the second largest beneficiary of Morocco's Foreign Direct
(Reuters (Eng) 05/22/17)
U.S. private equity firm Carlyle Group is suing a group of its insurers over $400 million worth of oil it claims it lost when Morocco's sole refinery went bankrupt two years ago, court documents show. Carlyle claims in a suit filed in the United States District Court for the Southern District of New York that insurance underwriters led by Mitsui Sumitomo Insurance Underwriting (now known as MS Amlin) have reneged on their obligations when refusing to cover the losses, according...
(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...

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