Monday 21 August 2017

Maroc

(Reuters (Eng) 08/21/17)
A suspect still at large after the Barcelona van attack began showing more religiously conservative behavior within the past year and refused to shake hands with women during a visit to his birthplace in Morocco in March, family members say. The relatives expressed shock and anger on Sunday after discovering the alleged involvement in the Barcelona attack of Younes Abouyaaqoub, 22, as well as his brother and two cousins, all originally from the small Moroccan town of Mrirt. Abouyaaqoub is one of 12 suspects in Thursday's attack on Las Ramblas, Barcelona's most famous boulevard, in which a van plowed into holidaymakers, killing 13 people. Abouyaaqoub's brother El Houssaine and first cousins Mohamed and Omar Hychami...
(AFP (eng) 08/19/17)
Finnish police said Saturday that after new information a stabbing spree that left two people dead was now considered a terrorist attack, identifying the suspect as an 18-year-old Moroccan citizen. Police shot and wounded the knife-wielding suspect on Friday, arresting him minutes after an afternoon stabbing rampage at a busy market square in Turku in southwestern Finland. "The incidents were initially investigated as murders, but in light of further information received during the night, the offences include now murders with terrorist intent and their attempts," police said in a statement. The suspect's "identity is known to the police. He is an 18-year-old Moroccan citizen," police said, providing no other details about him. The number of injured in the attack rose...
(AFP (eng) 08/19/17)
Residents of Melouiya, a village high in Morocco's Atlas Mountains, are in shock at the news two of their sons were implicated in terror attacks in Spain. A traditional tent set up on a rocky patch of ground near the rough stone house of the Oukabir family, originally intended for a wedding reception, has been turned into a funeral tent. "Joy has given way to sadness and pain," said Abderrahim, in his forties, an uncle of the Oukabir brothers. Driss...
(AFP (eng) 08/19/17)
Spanish police Friday released the names of three Moroccans suspected of deadly terror attacks and who were shot dead overnight by security forces in the seaside resort of Cambrils. Catalonia's regional police identified them as Moussa Oukabir, 17, Said Aallaa, 18, and Mohamed Hychami, 24. Police said they were searching for a fourth suspect, Younes Abouyaaqoub, aged 22. Police on Friday stepped up their investigation into the twin vehicle attacks in Spain that left 14 dead and over 100 more...
(AFP (eng) 08/14/17)
Morocco on Monday rejected accusations by media watchdog Reporters Without Borders (RSF) that it obstructed coverage of months of unrest and protests that have shaken the northern Rif region. In July, RSF issued a scathing statement accusing the authorities in the North African country of preventing journalists from covering events in the Rif, particularly in the main city of Al-Hoceima. "The situation of Moroccan and foreign journalists covering the events in northern Morocco keeps on getting worse," said Yasmine Kacha,...
(Bloomberg 08/14/17)
The U.S. will probably maintain its current levels of aid to Africa despite President Donald Trump’s proposals to slash funding, according to Bill Gates, the world’s richest man. Trump said in May his government would no longer allocate funding for family planning, a move that has the potential to undermine aid programs in the poorest countries in the world. However, with Congress in control of the budget, it’s unlikely that all cuts proposed by the Trump administration will go ahead...
(Reuters (Eng) 08/11/17)
Morocco has lodged its bid to host the 2026 soccer World Cup, the country's football federation said in a statement on Friday. The offer to host the expanded 48-team tournament will compete with a joint bid from the United States, Mexico and Canada. The North African nation narrowly lost out to South Africa in its offer to stage the 2010 finals. “The Royal Moroccan Football Federation has officially submitted its candidacy on Friday, August 11, 2017 to organize the World...
(APA 08/11/17)
Morocco has formally submitted its application to organize the 2026 World Cup, the Royal Moroccan Football Federation (FRMF) announced on Friday. “The FRMF has officially filed its application to the specialized commissions of the International Football Federation (FIFA) to host the World Cup 2026,” the body said in a statement. After four attempts to host the major global football event (1994, 1998, 2006 and 2010), Morocco aspires to be able to clinch the World Cup 2026, the first that will...
(Xinhuanet 08/11/17)
Morocco on Friday launched its bid to host the FIFA World Cup in 2026. Morocco's football association (RMFF) said in a statement posted on its website that it submitted its application to host the 2026 World Cup to the world soccer governing body FIFA. This will be Morocco's fifth bid to host the World Cups, after its unsuccessful bids for the 1994, 1998, 2006 and 2010 editions of the tournament. The deadline for a country to express their intention to...
(Reuters (Eng) 08/10/17)
A British explorer for mineral resources in Africa will on Thursday become the first venture of its kind to be listed on London's AIM market for growing companies, its CEO said. Following the recovery of the mining sector from a commodity price crash in 2015-16, a handful of new companies have listed. But smaller exploration companies known as project generators, which find assets but sell them on or agree joint ventures to develop them, have generally preferred the Canadian or...
(AFP (eng) 08/10/17)
The skull of an infant ape buried by a volcano 13 million years ago has preserved intriguing clues about the ancestor humans shared with apes -- including a likely African origin, scientists said Wednesday. A previously-unknown creature that shared an extended family with the human forefather, had a flat face like that of our far-flung cousin the gibbon, but did not move like one, its discoverers wrote in the journal Nature. They named it Nyanzapithecus alesi after "ales" -- the...
(AFP (eng) 08/09/17)
Spanish police have found 30 Moroccan and Algerian migrants, 10 of them minors, hidden in fairground vehicles leaving the Spanish territory of Ceuta after an annual festival, they said Tuesday. Agents used heartbeat detectors and dogs to locate the migrants who had hidden anywhere they could find -- including bumper cars and a ghost train -- as the vehicles carrying them waited to board ferries bound for mainland Spain, the Guardia Civil police force said. "They try to use attractions...
(Xinhuanet 08/09/17)
Morocco's vegetables exports to the European Union increased by 17 percent in the first half of this year compared to the same period of 2016, local media reported on Wednesday. The total value of the exports in the first six months of 2017 stood at 551.8 million euros(648 million USD) compared to 470.6 million euros(553 million USD) a year earlier, the financial daily L'Economiste said, citing figures from Eurostat, compiled by Spanish producer-exporter association Fepex. Morocco remains one of the...
(Xinhuanet 08/09/17)
The United States Trade Representative (USTR) on Wednesday affirmed the commitment of his country to Africa and saw "great potential to grow and deepen trade relationship." Robert E. Lighthizer expressed this in opening speech of the ministerial plenary as part of the 16th Forum of the Africa Growth and Opportunity Act (AGOA), on Wednesday here in Togolese capital Lome. "The United States is committed to Africa. We see great potential to grow and deepen our trade relationship, with the goal...
(AFP (eng) 08/08/17)
Morocco's opposition chief has resigned to take responsibility for the troubles facing his Authenticity and Modernity Party (PAM), including last year's election defeat, the party said. Ilyas El Omari's party was beaten by the ruling Islamists in Morocco's legislative polls in October, but more than doubled its number of seats in the new parliament. The PAM, formed in 2008 by a close adviser to the king, had poured enormous resources into a campaign criticising the government's economic record. But party...
(AFP (eng) 08/08/17)
A protester in a coma after being struck on the head last month in clashes between demonstrators and security forces in northern Morocco died Tuesday of his injuries, officials said. The neglected northern Rif region of Morocco has been shaken by weeks of protests and violence with demonstrators demanding jobs, development and an end to corruption. On July 20, Imad Atabi was hit in the head in clashes in the main Rif city of Al-Hoceima, and taken to a military...
(Reuters (Eng) 08/08/17)
Tuesday's action at the World Athletics Championships sees two of the most intriguing races of the program as South Africa's Wayde van Niekerk bids for the first half of his 400/200 meters double and Nigel Amos goes for gold in the men's 800m. World record holder and defending champion Van Niekerk should be unbeatable in the 400m but faces a stiff challenge, not least from Botswanan duo Isaac Makwala and Thebe Baboloki. Another Botswanan, Amos, will also have to be...
(Xinhuanet 08/03/17)
Trade between China and Africa reached 85.3 billion U.S. dollars in H1, surging 19 percent year on year as the two sides strengthened cooperation in a wide range of areas, official data showed Thursday. The data reversed the negative growth trend since 2015, according to Gao Feng, spokesperson with the Ministry of Commerce. During January-June, Chinese imports from Africa, including minerals, agricultural products and fruits, amounted to 38.4 billion U.S. dollars, jumping 46 percent from the same period last year,...
(AFP (eng) 08/02/17)
Human rights groups have raised fears for a detained Moroccan activist who was hospitalised a month into a hunger strike over his arrest following protests in the troubled Rif region. Detained in the northern town of Al-Hoceima in late June and held in Casablanca's Oukacha prison, 34-year-old Rabii Elablaq immediately began refusing food to demand his release. "His health has been deteriorating ever since," said Rachid Benali, coordinator of a group defending detainees from the Rif, a predominantly Berber region...
(Bloomberg 08/02/17)
Julien Ochala can’t live without his morning cup of Joe. But not just any coffee will do. For the past five years, the 37-year-old physiology lecturer at King’s College London has visited the same store every week to grab a pack of his beloved Kenyan brew. And he’s not put off by the cost: at 37 pounds a kilogram ($22 a pound), it’s more than double a similar supermarket product. "I take Kenyan coffee every morning," said Ochala, who buys...

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(Reuters (Eng) 08/21/17)
A suspect still at large after the Barcelona van attack began showing more religiously conservative behavior within the past year and refused to shake hands with women during a visit to his birthplace in Morocco in March, family members say. The relatives expressed shock and anger on Sunday after discovering the alleged involvement in the Barcelona attack of Younes Abouyaaqoub, 22, as well as his brother and two cousins, all originally from the small Moroccan town of Mrirt. Abouyaaqoub is one of 12 suspects in Thursday's attack on Las Ramblas, Barcelona's most famous boulevard, in which a van plowed into holidaymakers, killing 13 people. Abouyaaqoub's brother El Houssaine and first cousins Mohamed and Omar Hychami...
(AFP (eng) 08/19/17)
Finnish police said Saturday that after new information a stabbing spree that left two people dead was now considered a terrorist attack, identifying the suspect as an 18-year-old Moroccan citizen. Police shot and wounded the knife-wielding suspect on Friday, arresting him minutes after an afternoon stabbing rampage at a busy market square in Turku in southwestern Finland. "The incidents were initially investigated as murders, but in light of further information received during the night, the offences include now murders with terrorist intent and their attempts," police said in a statement. The suspect's "identity is known to the police. He is an 18-year-old Moroccan citizen," police said, providing no other details about him. The number of injured in the attack rose...
(AFP (eng) 08/19/17)
Residents of Melouiya, a village high in Morocco's Atlas Mountains, are in shock at the news two of their sons were implicated in terror attacks in Spain. A traditional tent set up on a rocky patch of ground near the rough stone house of the Oukabir family, originally intended for a wedding reception, has been turned into a funeral tent. "Joy has given way to sadness and pain," said Abderrahim, in his forties, an uncle of the Oukabir brothers. Driss...
(AFP (eng) 08/19/17)
Spanish police Friday released the names of three Moroccans suspected of deadly terror attacks and who were shot dead overnight by security forces in the seaside resort of Cambrils. Catalonia's regional police identified them as Moussa Oukabir, 17, Said Aallaa, 18, and Mohamed Hychami, 24. Police said they were searching for a fourth suspect, Younes Abouyaaqoub, aged 22. Police on Friday stepped up their investigation into the twin vehicle attacks in Spain that left 14 dead and over 100 more...
(Bloomberg 08/14/17)
The U.S. will probably maintain its current levels of aid to Africa despite President Donald Trump’s proposals to slash funding, according to Bill Gates, the world’s richest man. Trump said in May his government would no longer allocate funding for family planning, a move that has the potential to undermine aid programs in the poorest countries in the world. However, with Congress in control of the budget, it’s unlikely that all cuts proposed by the Trump administration will go ahead...
(AFP (eng) 08/09/17)
Spanish police have found 30 Moroccan and Algerian migrants, 10 of them minors, hidden in fairground vehicles leaving the Spanish territory of Ceuta after an annual festival, they said Tuesday. Agents used heartbeat detectors and dogs to locate the migrants who had hidden anywhere they could find -- including bumper cars and a ghost train -- as the vehicles carrying them waited to board ferries bound for mainland Spain, the Guardia Civil police force said. "They try to use attractions...
(AFP (eng) 08/01/17)
Some 200 migrants stormed a high fence between Morocco and the Spanish territory of Ceuta early on Tuesday, with 73 managing to get through in the latest incident at the border, authorities said. A spokesman for the central government's representative office in Ceuta, on Morocco's northern coast, said 18 people were "slightly" injured, including 15 migrants and three policemen. The migrants used "wire cutters and mallets to cut through the doors" in the high double fence, he added. Ceuta and...
(AFP (eng) 07/27/17)
Moroccan police have arrested a British dealer in virtual currency Bitcoin wanted on fraud charges in the United States, a source close to the investigation told AFP on Thursday. Police said only that a 49-year-old Briton had been detained in the northern city of Tangiers on Wednesday in response to a notice issued by Interpol on July 17 and that his extradition would be considered by the Court of Cassation. But the source identified him as British businessman Renwick Haddow,...
(The Associated Press 07/27/17)
The U.N. peacekeeping mission in Central African Republic says two Moroccan peacekeepers have been killed in a southeastern town where another Moroccan was killed Sunday. A statement says the two peacekeepers were killed by suspected anti-Balaka militia while another peacekeeper was injured. They had been restocking water for the town's humanitarian needs when they were attacked. Hundreds of people have been killed in Central African Republic and roughly 100,000 displaced in the past two months. Sectarian violence that began in...
(AFP (eng) 07/25/17)
A Moroccan court on Tuesday sentenced to three months in jail a journalist accused of having "invited" people to take part in banned protests in the restive north, his website said. Hamid El Mahdaoui was arrested on Thursday at the start of a banned demonstration in the northern city of Al-Hoceima, during which protesters clashed with police. El Mahdaoui, who heads the Badil online news site, was found guilty of helping to organise "a non-authorised march" as well as having...
(AFP (eng) 07/25/17)
A knife-wielding man shouting "Allahu Akbar" charged across the border between Morocco and the Spanish territory of Melilla on Tuesday, attacking and injuring a police officer, authorities said. The man was subsequently detained, Spanish Interior Minister Juan Ignacio Zoido said. "A man entered the border post and once inside, pulled out a large knife and confronted (police) shouting 'Allahu Akbar' (God is Greatest), slightly injuring a policeman," Irene Flores, spokeswoman for the central government's representative office in Melilla, told AFP...
(AFP (eng) 07/21/17)
A protester was in a coma after being struck on the head during clashes between demonstrators and security forces in northern Morocco, local authorities said on Friday. He was taken to hospital overnight after being wounded by "stone throwing" in the clashes on Thursday in the city of Al-Hoceima, official news agency MAP quoted the authorities as saying. Authorities are seeking to "identify the person and clarify the circumstances of the incident", MAP said, adding that the patient would be flown to a hospital in the capital...
(Reuters (Eng) 07/21/17)
Police fired tear gas and used truncheons to scatter hundreds of protesters in northern Morocco, a Reuters witness said on Thursday, part of the biggest wave of demonstrations in the kingdom since Arab Spring-inspired rallies in 2011. People have taken to the streets in the Rif region around the city of Al-Hoceima since October over injustice, corruption and underdevelopment, and on Thursday thousands gathered to try to join in rallies that local authorities had banned. Police charged at small groups...
(AFP (eng) 07/19/17)
A Moroccan court on Wednesday sentenced 23 Sahrawis to prison terms ranging from two years to life over the killing of 11 members of the Moroccan security forces in contested Western Sahara. The verdict in the case, which has been closely followed by human rights campaigners, was delivered at dawn by the Court of Appeals in Sale near Rabat, the official news agency MAP reported. Morocco and the Algeria-backed Polisario Front independence movement have accused each other of provoking the deadly clashes between police and Sahrawi protesters at a camp for displaced people in Gdeim Izik in November 2010. In 2013 a military court sentenced the defendants to jail terms...
(Reuters (Eng) 07/18/17)
Three years after he risked his life crossing the Mediterranean Sea from Libya to Italy on a small boat crammed with migrants, 22-year-old Sow Muhammed can hardly believe his luck. The former street hawker from Guinea now works as a caterer in Venice, rents his own apartment, and sends money back home regularly to his mother and siblings in the West African nation. "I am happy I came to Europe, and my family is also happy," he told the Thomson...
(AFP (eng) 07/14/17)
Six people were sentenced to one year in jail for celebrating on Facebook after the December 2016 assassination of Russia's ambassador to Turkey, the official news agency MAP reported Friday. A court in Sale, near the capital Rabat, condemned the six Moroccans late Thursday and also fined them 10,000 dirhams (115 euros) each for "incitement of terrorist acts". Lawyer Abdessamad El Idrissi, a member of the Islamist PJD (Justice and Development Party), criticised what he called the "exaggerated and sorry" sentencing of the young Moroccans who "represent the country's elite". They were convicted for having hailed in comments on Facebook the murder in Ankara of ambassador...
(Cnbc Africa 07/12/17)
"Africa is an awakening giant," according to the former South African President Frederik Willem de Klerk speaking at the World Petroleum Congress in Istanbul. The leader who oversaw the transition of his country's power to Nelson Mandela said Tuesday that the future looks bright for a continent previously blighted by war, famine and a lack of infrastructure. "I believe Africa is an awakening giant and, yes, it is not performing according to what we expected soon enough, but it will...
(Reuters (Eng) 07/11/17)
Morocco's general prosecutor said he would investigate the leaking of a video of a detained protest leader from the northern Rif region that has sparked widespread anger and accusations he had been abused. Protest organizer Nasser Zefzafi shows his arms, legs and torso to the camera in the video, posted on Monday by a website known for its ties to the security services. The website framed the video as evidence against claims of ill-treatment, but marks and bruises are visible...
(APA 07/11/17)
Moroccan peacekeepers deployed in Bria in the north central region of the Central African Republic (CAR) have been withdrawn, MINUSCA announced on Monday. MINUSCA the UN Integrated Multidimensional Mission for Stabilization in the Central African Republic said on a private radio station in Bangui, the nation’s capital, that the decision came at the end of the demonstration staged by inhabitants of Bria last Thursday, demanding the withdrawal of the Moroccan contingent from Bria, for “bias” in their security activities. “Depending on operational requirements, we very often have contingents or parts of the contingents across the country that move from...
(Voice of America 07/11/17)
In the past five years, terrorist attacks have killed nearly 20,000 people across Africa. Two groups, Boko Haram and al-Shabab, accounted for 71 percent of reported incidents and 91 percent of fatalities. But, while these and other militant groups remain active, fatal terrorist attacks across the continent are on pace to fall for a second straight year, and the total number of attacks is running far below 2012 highs. These findings are part of VOA’s original analysis of data from...

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(Reuters (Eng) 08/10/17)
A British explorer for mineral resources in Africa will on Thursday become the first venture of its kind to be listed on London's AIM market for growing companies, its CEO said. Following the recovery of the mining sector from a commodity price crash in 2015-16, a handful of new companies have listed. But smaller exploration companies known as project generators, which find assets but sell them on or agree joint ventures to develop them, have generally preferred the Canadian or Australian exchanges. "We will be the only listed project-generator business that has a focus on Africa," Steven Poulton, chief executive of Altus Strategies, told Reuters. Poulton had told Reuters in May he planned to list...
(Xinhuanet 08/09/17)
Morocco's vegetables exports to the European Union increased by 17 percent in the first half of this year compared to the same period of 2016, local media reported on Wednesday. The total value of the exports in the first six months of 2017 stood at 551.8 million euros(648 million USD) compared to 470.6 million euros(553 million USD) a year earlier, the financial daily L'Economiste said, citing figures from Eurostat, compiled by Spanish producer-exporter association Fepex. Morocco remains one of the top suppliers of the EU in terms of fresh vegetables. Tomatoes, potatoes and onions are the principal vegetable products exported from Morocco to the EU. In recent years, Morocco's exports to the EU market accounted for about 60 percent of...
(Xinhuanet 08/09/17)
The United States Trade Representative (USTR) on Wednesday affirmed the commitment of his country to Africa and saw "great potential to grow and deepen trade relationship." Robert E. Lighthizer expressed this in opening speech of the ministerial plenary as part of the 16th Forum of the Africa Growth and Opportunity Act (AGOA), on Wednesday here in Togolese capital Lome. "The United States is committed to Africa. We see great potential to grow and deepen our trade relationship, with the goal...
(Xinhuanet 08/03/17)
Trade between China and Africa reached 85.3 billion U.S. dollars in H1, surging 19 percent year on year as the two sides strengthened cooperation in a wide range of areas, official data showed Thursday. The data reversed the negative growth trend since 2015, according to Gao Feng, spokesperson with the Ministry of Commerce. During January-June, Chinese imports from Africa, including minerals, agricultural products and fruits, amounted to 38.4 billion U.S. dollars, jumping 46 percent from the same period last year,...
(Bloomberg 08/02/17)
Julien Ochala can’t live without his morning cup of Joe. But not just any coffee will do. For the past five years, the 37-year-old physiology lecturer at King’s College London has visited the same store every week to grab a pack of his beloved Kenyan brew. And he’s not put off by the cost: at 37 pounds a kilogram ($22 a pound), it’s more than double a similar supermarket product. "I take Kenyan coffee every morning," said Ochala, who buys...
(Bloomberg 08/01/17)
British American Tobacco Plc faces a formal probe by the U.K.’s Serious Fraud Office following reports that the maker of Dunhill cigarettes bribed African government officials to influence tobacco legislation. BAT said Tuesday it is running its own investigations, via external legal advisers, into allegations of misconduct and is cooperating with the U.K. prosecutor. A BBC report two years ago said BAT had a lobbyist arrange bribes totaling $26,000 for three public officials in Rwanda, Burundi and the Comoros Islands...
(Reuters (Eng) 07/28/17)
Barclays reported a 1.2 billion pound ($1.57 billion)attributable first half loss on Friday after taking a 2.5 billion pound hit from the sale of its Africa business and calling an end to its restructuring. The British bank said it had made a 1.4 billion pound loss on the sale of 33 percent of Barclays Africa Group, and took a further 1.1 billion pound impairment charge on the sale. Barclays in June cut its stake in Barclays Africa Group to 15...
(AfricaNews 07/27/17)
At a time when Africa is going through a difficult situation, the blue economy is emerging as a stepping stone to relaunch the continent in the right economic direction. But this type of economy is seriously threatened by “predators” who do not hesitate to plunder resources. The “cancer of illegal fishing” costs Africa about $ 1.6 million annually based on Economic Commission for Africa’s estimates. This and more on this week’s edition segment on Business on the Morning Call with...
(Agence Ecofin 07/25/17)
In Morocco, the debt of telecom group Itissalat Al Maghrib, mostly known as Maroc Telecom, has increased by about 4.7 billion dirhams ($491.6 million) over the first half of 2017, ended on June 30. The rise is mainly due to bank borrowings (repayable in less than 12 months) having exceeded four billion dirhams. As investments slumped by a little more than 20% over the period reviewed, the group says the major part of the debt was used to finance restructuring...
(Agence Ecofin 07/24/17)
On July 20, Othman Benjelloun, President of the Groupe BMCE Bank of Africa, signed a contract for the construction of Africa’s tallest tower, with Chinese group China Railway Construction Corporation International (CRCCI). The Rabat Bouregreg tower will indeed be built in Salé, boasting of an astounding height of 250m and 55 floors. It will, among others, include a mall, a business centre, hotels and residences. Construction works for the building began, it may be recalled, in March 2016, with King...
(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...
(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...

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(Reuters (Eng) 08/11/17)
Morocco has lodged its bid to host the 2026 soccer World Cup, the country's football federation said in a statement on Friday. The offer to host the expanded 48-team tournament will compete with a joint bid from the United States, Mexico and Canada. The North African nation narrowly lost out to South Africa in its offer to stage the 2010 finals. “The Royal Moroccan Football Federation has officially submitted its candidacy on Friday, August 11, 2017 to organize the World Cup in 2026,” the statement on the federation's website ( www.frmf.ma ) said. “The Federation submitted its application to the relevant committees of the Federation Internationale de Football Association - FIFA - to host this...
(APA 08/11/17)
Morocco has formally submitted its application to organize the 2026 World Cup, the Royal Moroccan Football Federation (FRMF) announced on Friday. “The FRMF has officially filed its application to the specialized commissions of the International Football Federation (FIFA) to host the World Cup 2026,” the body said in a statement. After four attempts to host the major global football event (1994, 1998, 2006 and 2010), Morocco aspires to be able to clinch the World Cup 2026, the first that will pit 48 teams. Until now, only Morocco and the trio USA-Canada-Mexico (a joint bid) have expressed their wish to host the 2026 edition. Last March, the president of the Confederation of African Football (CAF), Ahmad Ahmad, said he was convinced...
(Xinhuanet 08/11/17)
Morocco on Friday launched its bid to host the FIFA World Cup in 2026. Morocco's football association (RMFF) said in a statement posted on its website that it submitted its application to host the 2026 World Cup to the world soccer governing body FIFA. This will be Morocco's fifth bid to host the World Cups, after its unsuccessful bids for the 1994, 1998, 2006 and 2010 editions of the tournament. The deadline for a country to express their intention to...
(Reuters (Eng) 08/08/17)
Tuesday's action at the World Athletics Championships sees two of the most intriguing races of the program as South Africa's Wayde van Niekerk bids for the first half of his 400/200 meters double and Nigel Amos goes for gold in the men's 800m. World record holder and defending champion Van Niekerk should be unbeatable in the 400m but faces a stiff challenge, not least from Botswanan duo Isaac Makwala and Thebe Baboloki. Another Botswanan, Amos, will also have to be...
(AFP (eng) 07/21/17)
The 2019 Africa Cup of Nations will expand from 16 to 24 teams and be staged in June and July, the Confederation of African Football (CAF) announced on Thursday. The tournament has traditionally been held in January and February, with the timing of the tournament a source of frustration to European clubs forced to release players in the middle of the season. The CAF executive committee confirmed the changes to the format following a two-day symposium in Rabat, although the...
(AFP (eng) 06/21/17)
Kenya's sports minister Hassan Wario assured the CAF delegation that all five stadiums will be ready at least three months before the competition. The Confederation of African Football has said four out of five Kenyan stadiums fall short of standards for hosting next year's African Nations Championship (CHAN) and has given Kenya until June to upgrade them. An inspection team led by CAF vice-president Suketu Patel said a lot of work needs to be done, but insisted Kenya remained on track to host the international tournament, reserved for players featuring in their domestic league competitions.
(AFP (eng) 05/11/17)
A dramatic 95th-minute equaliser from Morocco against Cameroon (1-1) in the Islamic Solidarity Games football tournament in Baku on Thursday left both sides with some regrets. "I am not happy with the result, but I am satisfied with the determination the players showed to pull back level. They were resolute and showed a lot of willpower to get that goal", Morocco coach Jamal Sellami told AFP-Services. With four points, the north Africans moved one step closer to a place in...
(AFP (eng) 05/09/17)
Tournament debutants Turkey opened their campaign at the Islamic Solidarity Games handball competition with a well-rounded 27-24 victory over Morocco in Baku on Tuesday. Morocco, who reached the quarter-finals in 2005, were unable to worry the Turks, inspired by high-flying captain Ramazan Done, who finished with eight goals. The game was tightly contested with keepers Alae Laaroussi and Taner Gunay shining at both ends to keep the scoreline low at 12-8 in favour of Turkey at half-time. It took just...
(AFP (eng) 05/08/17)
Defending champions Morocco edged out Saudi Arabia 1-0 in their opening Group A clash at the Azal Arena, as the 2017 Islamic Solidarity Games got underway in Baku on Monday. Morocco were by far the better side throughout and Zouheir El Moutaraji wasted a great opportunity early on, while Saudi keeper Habib Alwatyan made several second-half saves. But substitute Chouaib El Maftoul curled in a deserved winner with 14 minutes to play. It was the first action of the fourth...
(AFP (eng) 05/07/17)
Italian football has been hit by a second racist storm inside a week after Juventus defender Mehdi Benatia was insulted live on air during a live, post-match television interview with Italian state broadcaster Rai. Benatia, a Morocco international, was being interviewed following a 1-1 Serie A draw at home with city rivals Torino when it was cut embarrassingly short by what seemed like a studio technician's gaffe. As he was speaking to studio presenters about Juventus, Benatia heard a voice...
(AFP (eng) 03/29/17)
New African football chief Ahmad Ahmad gave his backing on Tuesday to a potential bid from Morocco to host the 2026 World Cup. The north African country has bid to host the global showpiece on four previous occasions but missed out on the 1994, 1998, 2006 and 2010 editions. "We are convinced that Morocco could organise this competition just as was done by South Africa in 2010," said Ahmad, who was elected president of the Confederation of African Football (CAF)...
(AFP (eng) 03/27/17)
African Football Confederation (CAF) secretary-general Hicham El Amrani resigned on Sunday without giving an explanation. The 37-year-old Moroccan revealed his decision in a letter to African national football associations. His move is probably linked to the defeat of long-serving Cameroonian Issa Hayatou by Malagasy outsider Ahmad Ahmad in the CAF presidential election this month. El Amrani was a Hayatou loyalist, constantly defending his boss, who ruled African football for 29 years, against public and media criticism. He became secretary-general, initially...
(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...
(AFP (eng) 03/04/17)
Fourteen people were injured when rival football supporters clashed in the northern Moroccan town of Al-Hoceima on Friday, the interior ministry said. Footage posted by local residents on social media appeared to show skirmishes between groups of young people in the Mediterranean coastal town. "Two groups of football fans clashed near the stadium" in the city, said the ministry, which reported material damage and 14 people needing hospital treatment. It said the authorities intervened "to reestablish calm" and that arrests...
(AFP (eng) 02/10/17)
Up to 18 players at the just-completed Africa Cup of Nations could be involved in the new-look CAF Champions League when it kicks off this weekend. Among them is Georges Bokwe, one of two unused goalkeepers in the Cameroon squad that defeated Egypt in the final last Sunday in Gabon. Bokwe was kept out of the starting line-up by the consistent brilliance of Spain-based Fabrice Ondoa, who was included in the team of the tournament. But Bokwe is the first...
(AFP (eng) 01/30/17)
Mahmoud Kahraba's late goal allowed Egypt to beat Herve Renard's Morocco in the Africa Cup of Nations quarter-finals on Sunday as they joined Ghana in completing the line-up for the last four. Kahraba came off the bench in the second half in Port-Gentil and stabbed home from inside the six-yard box in the 88th minute, just as extra time looked inevitable. The dramatic finish came after the Ayew brothers, Jordan and Andre, both scored to give Ghana a 2-1 win...
(AFP (eng) 01/28/17)
Herve Renard will be hoping to move a step closer to winning a third Africa Cup of Nations crown when he leads Morocco into a quarter-final against Egypt in Port-Gentil on Sunday evening. The dashing Frenchman eliminated the Ivory Coast, the side he led to the title in 2015, as Morocco made the knockout phase of a Cup of Nations for the first time since 2004. Also the architect of Zambia's unlikely triumph in Gabon in 2012, Renard's aim now...
(AFP (eng) 01/25/17)
Title-holders the Ivory Coast were dumped out of the Africa Cup of Nations Tuesday after a superb Rachid Alioui goal gave Herve Renard-coached Morocco a 1-0 win in Gabon. Clinching a quarter-finals place was particularly sweet for Frenchman Renard, the coach of the Ivorians when they won the biennial tournament two years ago. The blond, bronzed 48-year-old, wearing his lucky white shirt, hopes to become the first coach to win three Cup of Nations titles with three different countries. He...
(AFP (eng) 01/23/17)
Having guided the Ivory Coast to glory at the 2015 Africa Cup of Nations, Herve Renard is now hoping to end his former side's defence of the trophy when they face his Morocco team on Tuesday. The script could not have been better written, with Renard's Morocco and the Elephants clashing in a winner takes all final Group C showdown in the northern Gabonese town of Oyem, kicking off at 2000 local time (1900 GMT). The Atlas Lions have not...
(AFP (eng) 01/19/17)
French coaches Herve Renard and Claude le Roy loom large over the key Africa Cup of Nations Group C clash between Morocco and Togo in Oyem Friday. Renard, a Cup of Nations winner with Zambia in 2012 and the Ivory Coast in 2015, was hired by Morocco last year and given a mandate to reach the semi-finals. Right now, a last-four place must seem a long way off for the blond, bronzed 48-year-old former Paris rubbish collector who always wears...

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(AFP (eng) 08/10/17)
The skull of an infant ape buried by a volcano 13 million years ago has preserved intriguing clues about the ancestor humans shared with apes -- including a likely African origin, scientists said Wednesday. A previously-unknown creature that shared an extended family with the human forefather, had a flat face like that of our far-flung cousin the gibbon, but did not move like one, its discoverers wrote in the journal Nature. They named it Nyanzapithecus alesi after "ales" -- the word for "ancestor" in the Turkana language of Kenya, where the lemon-sized skull was unearthed. The sole specimen is that of an infant that would have grown to weigh about 11 kilogrammes (24 pounds) in...
(AFP (eng) 05/26/17)
Entertainment | France | film | festival | Cannes | Zambia | witchcraft Cannes, France | AFP | Friday 5/26/2017 - 14:01 UTC+3 | 615 words by Katy Lee Being accused of witchcraft is no laughing matter in Africa -- but movie director Rungano Nyoni decided a dose of humour was just what was needed to tackle a problem rampant in parts of the continent. Set in Zambia, the sharp satire "I Am Not A Witch" has premiered to strong reviews at the Cannes film festival, taking aim at the blatant sexism behind accusations that overwhelmingly target women. White tourists are seen gawping at women detained in a "witch camp" in the movie, taking pictures of them as if they're...
(Xinhuanet 04/18/17)
Africa's diaspora is playing a big role in the economic transformation of the continent, the UN said on Tuesday. UN Population Fund (UNFPA) Regional Director Dr Julitta Onabanjo told Xinhua in Nairobi that remittances are important source of income for many African families. "The diaspora therefore complements government efforts to lift many families out of poverty," Onabanjo said on the sidelines of the First Africa-China Conference on Population and Development. Onabanjo said that Africans in the diaspora also bring back...
(AFP (eng) 03/02/17)
A film raging against colonialism and the exploitation of Africa wowed viewers at the continent's top cinema festival Wednesday, winning shouts of approval at a screening packed to bursting point. "The African Storm" tells the story of an African president who nationalises businesses run by racist, cynical Western executives. Directed and produced by its Beninese star Sylvestre Amoussou, it tackles several hot-button issues including an exit from the CFA franc currency, closer ties with Russia and China as opposed to...
(AFP (eng) 02/27/17)
An African road movie about four women wowed its audience Sunday as it kicked off the Panafrican cinema and television festival (Fespaco), a showcase for the continent's burgeoning film industry. "Borders" ("Frontieres") directed by Apolline Traore, a Fespaco laureate in 2013, sweeps across Africa as its protagonists journey through Senegal, Mali, Burkina Faso and Benin on their way to Nigeria. Along the way the women -- Ivorian, Senegalese, Burkinabe and Nigerian actresses -- are spared nothing as they are beset...
(Xinhuanet 02/10/17)
Morocco's 23rd international book fair, which brings together 100,000 books and expects hundreds of thousands of visitors, kicked off on Thursday in the financial city of Casablanca. This year's edition was inaugurated by Morocco's king brother prince Moulay Rachid. Organized by Morocco's Ministry of Culture on Feb. 9-19, the annual book fair is attended by 54 countries. According to the organizers, the fair expects to welcome about 350,000 visitors who will discover titles from 702 publishers. This book fair will...
(AFP (eng) 01/25/17)
A public television station in Morocco was given an official reprimand on Tuesday for broadcasting a sequence on how to use make-up to conceal the bruises of battered women. It was transmitted last November -- marking the International Day for the Elimination of Violence Against Women -- by 2M on its morning magazine programme "Sabahiyate". The sequence depicted a woman with a swollen face, with the presenter telling viewers that she was not really injured, and that these were just "cinematic effects". On Tuesday, the country's High Authority for Audiovisual Communication (HACA) said the sequence
(Xinhuanet 12/13/16)
Chinese director Wang Xuebo claimed on Saturday the Best Directing Prize at Marrakech film festival for his movie "Knife in the Clear Water." Wang Xuebo's debut feature film focuses on the mutual understanding between a man and a cow. Born in December 1984, Wang Xuebo started his film career in 2013 as a producer of films. "Knife in the Clear Water," his first feature as a director, started as a project in 2010 and was completed in 2016.
(AFP (eng) 12/01/16)
Nestled in a labyrinth of streets in the heart of Morocco's ancient city of Fez, stands the world's oldest working library. Its sculpted dark wooden door stands almost hidden on the edge of a square where artisans hammer away at copper in a deafening din, delighting passing tourists. But for the few lucky enough to be allowed behind the door, a staircase tiled with green and blue hints at the written wonders beyond. As early writings from the Arabic-speaking world...
(AFP (eng) 11/29/16)
A public television station in Morocco apologised again on Monday after uproar on social media followed its broadcast of an item on makeup to hide the bruises of battered women. The sequence -- marking last week's International Day for the Elimination of Violence Against Women -- was transmitted by 2M on the morning magazine programme "Sabahiyate" to "show the type of makeup to use when a woman has been hit". It depicted a woman with a swollen face, with the presenter telling viewers that she was not really injured, but that these were just "cinematic effects".
(AFP (eng) 10/21/16)
Demand for homegrown contemporary music is sweeping Africa and driving a creative boom in an industry otherwise battered by falling CD sales and rampant piracy. A recent study of the entertainment sector by PricewaterhouseCoopers (PwC) accountants showed rapid earnings growth in many African countries, fuelled largely by live performances by local artists. "Consumers are increasingly wanting local content," Vicki Myburgh, a PwC director who conducted the study released last month, told AFP. "The Nigerian music market... will (soon) grow at...
(AFP (eng) 10/11/16)
Raised on the backstabbing intrigue of 1980s American soaps "Dallas" and "Dynasty", and later, the heady drama of South American telenovelas, Africans are enjoying a surge in local TV content they can finally identify with. It took a while, but in the past decade local programming has soared in sub-Saharan Africa's key economies, a rise driven by both foreign satellite networks and television stations on the continent. This growth has delivered up local shows such as Kenya's comedic "Real Househelps...
(AFP (eng) 09/27/16)
Well-known Moroccan cartoonist Khalid Geddar has asked for police protection after being threatened for reposting a drawing that led to the murder of a Jordanian writer, he said on Monday. Geddar, who runs the satirical magazine Baboubi, reposted on Facebook on Sunday, as a posthumous tribute, a cartoon previously posted by Nahed Hattar who was shot dead outside an Amman courthouse earlier that day. Hattar had been facing charges over the illustration he posted on Facebook under the title "God of Daesh" (the Islamic State group) showing a bearded man in bed smoking with two women
(AFP (eng) 09/23/16)
A century after the project was conceived in the throes of racial segregation, and a few months before the first black US president leaves office, the African American Museum in Washington opens Saturday. Here are key facts about the first national museum devoted entirely to showcasing African Americans' life, history and culture. - 1915: A project 101 years old The effort to open, in the US capital, a museum dedicated to the history of the black community "began more than...
(The East African 09/10/16)
The Pan African Federation of Filmmakers (FEPACI) is seeking to raise $200 million from partners over the next two years to fund the continent's audiovisual and cinema sector. The funds will be used to establish centres of excellence in the five regions - East Africa, North Africa, Central Africa, Southern Africa, and West Africa -- and the locations will be decided by the African Council of Ministers of Culture. The money will be used to improve the quality and quantity...
(AFP (eng) 09/01/16)
Moroccan actress Loubna Abidar, who took refuge in France following a backlash over a role as a prostitute, is launching a YouTube channel to discuss controversial issues with people back home. "Hello to those who love me, hello to those who support me. Hello also to those who don't like me, to those who insult me and who listen to me anyway," Abidar said in what she promised would be the first of a weekly video series. Urging her compatriots...
(Euronews 07/20/16)
The 13th Timitar Festival, held earlier this month in Morocco’s coastal city Agadir, was a tribute to Berber music as well as to cultural tolerance in the way it showcased a fusion of different musical genres. The music of the Berbers, a people who live in scattered communities across North Africa, has inspired a handful of artists from world music who’ve come to be inspired by its ritualistic rhythms. The Berber language was only recently recognized in Morocco. “Timitar” means “signs” in Berber and this festival wanted to send out a message of tolerance in a fragile region struggling to come to terms
(Voice of America 07/04/16)
To the beat of African drums, a few dozen people gathered at Dallas City Hall Friday to officially kick off the three-day African Film Festival. The event showcases films made by Africans, as well as a few made by non-Africans about issues important to different regions of the continent. City officials hailed the new festival as an expression of the increasing ethnic and cultural diversity in Texas’ second-largest city. Regina Hill Onyeibe, the Africa Liaison for the City of Dallas...
(Reuters (Eng) 06/28/16)
Africa's largest provider of pay-television services Naspers (NPNJn.J) has kept prices on the continent unchanged to halt a decline in subscriber numbers, its chief executive said on Monday. Naspers, the biggest listed firm on the continent, which sells access to popular American series and blockbuster movies in 50 countries in Africa and the Indian Ocean via its Multichoice unit, reported an 18 percent rise in full-year profit on Friday, but flagged pay-TV as a drag on its performance. Weaker currencies...
(AFP (eng) 05/14/16)
On a choice spot overlooking Washington's most stately monuments, a new museum swathed in bronze will showcase the tragedy and triumph of black America. The National Museum of African American History and Culture, 100 years in the making and now almost ready, will fill a gaping void: until now the city had no grand-scale museum dedicated solely to this chapter of US history. Slave cabins, a blacks-only train car from the segregation era and exhibits on the Reverend Martin Luther...

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(Bloomberg 08/14/17)
The U.S. will probably maintain its current levels of aid to Africa despite President Donald Trump’s proposals to slash funding, according to Bill Gates, the world’s richest man. Trump said in May his government would no longer allocate funding for family planning, a move that has the potential to undermine aid programs in the poorest countries in the world. However, with Congress in control of the budget, it’s unlikely that all cuts proposed by the Trump administration will go ahead next year, Gates said in an interview in Dar es Salaam, Tanzania’s commercial capital. “It’s quite clear that they won’t make those drastic cuts,” Gates said. “I’m hopeful they won’t make any cuts at all,...
(Bloomberg 08/02/17)
Julien Ochala can’t live without his morning cup of Joe. But not just any coffee will do. For the past five years, the 37-year-old physiology lecturer at King’s College London has visited the same store every week to grab a pack of his beloved Kenyan brew. And he’s not put off by the cost: at 37 pounds a kilogram ($22 a pound), it’s more than double a similar supermarket product. "I take Kenyan coffee every morning," said Ochala, who buys his beans from Monmouth Coffee Company in Borough Market. "I love it because of the relatively higher acidity level. It keeps me active in the afternoons." Customers willing to pay a premium for African brews, known for their floral, fruity...
(Bloomberg 08/01/17)
British American Tobacco Plc faces a formal probe by the U.K.’s Serious Fraud Office following reports that the maker of Dunhill cigarettes bribed African government officials to influence tobacco legislation. BAT said Tuesday it is running its own investigations, via external legal advisers, into allegations of misconduct and is cooperating with the U.K. prosecutor. A BBC report two years ago said BAT had a lobbyist arrange bribes totaling $26,000 for three public officials in Rwanda, Burundi and the Comoros Islands...
(Voice of America 07/25/17)
European and African ministers are meeting in Tunisia about efforts to regulate the flow of refugees from Africa to Europe, primarily along the deadly central Mediterranean route originating in Libya. In a declaration Monday in Tunis, the capital, the ministers said they agreed on a multi-pronged approach to the crisis, including informing people about the risks of illegal migration and the possibility of voluntarily returning home, addressing why migrants leave home and beefing up actions against human traffickers. Participating in...
(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...
(Voice of America 07/11/17)
In the past five years, terrorist attacks have killed nearly 20,000 people across Africa. Two groups, Boko Haram and al-Shabab, accounted for 71 percent of reported incidents and 91 percent of fatalities. But, while these and other militant groups remain active, fatal terrorist attacks across the continent are on pace to fall for a second straight year, and the total number of attacks is running far below 2012 highs. These findings are part of VOA’s original analysis of data from...
(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,...
(Voice of America 07/04/17)
GENEVA — The U.N. children’s fund warns tens of thousands of malnourished children are at great risk in Yemen, Somalia and South Sudan, which are on the brink of famine. UNICEF reports an estimated 4.7 million children in the cholera-stricken countries are malnourished. Of these, UNICEF spokesman Christofe Boulierac tells VOA, more than one million are suffering from severe acute malnutrition. “Let me remind you that a child who is suffering from severe acute malnutrition are nine times more likely...
(RFI(EN) 07/04/17)
New tax rules in Israel could leave hundreds of African migrants worse off than they are. In May, the government introduced a new deposit law, enabling the governemnt to take 20 percent of migrants' salaries each month and place it out of reach. The money can only be accessed once they leave the country. Rights groups say the policy is designed to force them out of the country. "We're not pressuring you to leave but will make your life miserable...
(Voice of America 06/21/17)
WASHINGTON DC — On June 5, Saudi Arabia and its allies, including Egypt, the United Arab Emirates and Bahrain, cut diplomatic ties with Qatar, accusing it of funding extremist groups such as the Muslim Brotherhood and Islamic State. In response, Qatar said it was the victim of a policy of “domination and control” by its larger neighbor and that Saudi Arabia was, in fact, the one responsible for backing extremism. So what is the truth? Fundamentalist strains of Islam, including...
(Washington Post 05/31/17)
The old man’s house had become a camp for the displaced. In the back yard, groups of women boiled water for rice. Small children skittered across the dirt, running into the bedroom, where they careened around the long, skinny legs of Elijah Karama. “Because of the conditions, they are mine to take care of,” said Karama, 57, more tired than proud. By conditions, he meant Boko Haram’s destruction of vast areas of northeastern Nigeria, and the hunger crisis that has...
(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...
(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...
(Bloomberg 05/08/17)
Attijariwafa Bank, Morocco’s biggest lender, is planning to complete expansions in East and West Africa this year as it focuses on consolidating its new acquisitions to spur growth. The Casablanca-based bank aims to finalize a deal to buy Rwanda’s Cie Generale de Banque, known as Cogebanque, start commercial banking operations in Chad and apply for a banking license in Ghana in 2017, General Manager Ismail Douiri said in an interview in Cairo on Sunday. The lender has halted its plans...
(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...
(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...
(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...
(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...
(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...
(Voice of America 04/17/17)
The Italian coast guard says it has rescued nearly 6,000 migrants on the Mediterranean since Friday, underscoring the continued flow of people along this dangerous route. A group of Africans living in Europe visited Cameroon this week to launch a campaign against illegal migration. The group is called “No More Death in the Desert or on the Sea.” Its mission is simple: to educate youth in Africa about the harsh realities of illegal migration. "We want to tell them that...

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