Sunday 17 December 2017
(National Post 09/14/13)
Africa’s population will more than double to 2.4 billion within 40 years, thanks in large part to better health care, according to a major study. Sub-Saharan Africa’s population is rising faster than the rest of the world because modern medicine and health care on the continent means more babies are surviving birth complications, and fewer adults are dying from preventable diseases. But the number of children being conceived is not dropping, or is doing so very slowly. “This means that population growth rates would naturally rise if birth rates stay as they are,” said Carl Haub, the co-author of the report by the U.S.-based Population Reference Bureau. African mothers currently give birth to an average of 5.2 children, rising to...
(Voice of America 09/13/13)
GENEVA — A new report says the number of global deaths among children under age five is almost half what it was 22 years ago. A joint report by the United Nations Children’s Fund, the World Health Organization,and World Bank finds about 6.6 million children died before reaching their fifth birthday in 2012 compared to 12 million children who died in 1990. The report calls the progress being made in cutting child deaths remarkable. However, it says this is still not good enough. It says most child deaths are preventable, and that by applying a number of simple, affordable measures, more children’s lives can be saved. Elizabeth Mason, director of the World Health Organization's department of maternal, newborn, child and...
(Voice of America 09/13/13)
NAIROBI, KENYA — In Africa, demand for the cassava plant has grown significantly over the years. The continent produces 60 percent of the crop in the world. But the crop is drastically declining in East and Central Africa due to diseases that reduce production. More than 160 million people in east, central and southern Africa depend on cassava as a stable food and a source of income. Production of the crop has significantly dropped due to the cassava mosaic and cassava brown streak diseases. According to the U.N. Food and Agriculture Organization [FAO], the brown streak disease is worse since it affects the root of the crop. These two diseases are creating havoc in Africa’s agricultural lands.Improvements necessary. The acting...
(Dw-World 09/12/13)
If German Chancellor Angela Merkel were standing for election in Africa in September, she would have a good chance of winning. But it's not all praise for Merkel and the German government. If it were up to the Mozambicans who were once contract workers in the former East Germany or "GDR", Chancellor Angela Merkel and her Christian Democratic Union (CDU) would win the upcoming elections. Germany goes to the polls on September 22, 2013. The Mozambican returnees, known as "Madgermanes", are convinced Merkel strengthened the German economy and successfully steered her country through the turmoil of the financial crisis. "Germany has remained Europe's largest economy under the Merkel government, even the global financial crisis did not affect it that badly,"...
(Reuters (Eng) 09/12/13)
JOHANNESBURG, Sept 12 | (Reuters) - Africa's robust economic growth over the past decade has raised hopes the world's poorest continent can reduce reliance on aid. The problem with this scenario is its failure to consider the role aid may be playing in the "Africa Rising" narrative. Looking for a link between aid and growth, an unmistakable pattern emerges from the numbers. World Bank data shows foreign donor aid to Africa from the OECD group of wealthy countries was just under $13 billion in 2000 and soared to $41 billion in 2006, and then slipped, before rebounding and hitting over $46 billion in 2011. Net official development assistance per capita was just $19.50 in 2000 and almost tripled to a...
(Reuters (Eng) 09/12/13)
LONDON | Thu Sep 12, 2013 (Reuters) - BlackRock's exchange-traded funds (ETFs) business iShares has appointed a new fixed income chief in Europe, Middle East and Africa (EMEA) as it steps up efforts to meet growing demand for index-tracking bond investments in the region. iShares has appointed Brett Olson, former managing director of Nomura's asset backed securities sales team in EMEA, to lead its burgeoning fixed income product development, sales and capital markets teams. Olson will report to Tom Fekete, who recently joined iShares as head of product development for EMEA and David Heike, Global Head of Fixed Income iShares. "Fixed income ETFs have gathered strong assets over the last three years, but we're now seeing a revolution in demand...
(Reuters (Eng) 09/12/13)
LONDON | Thu Sep 12, 2013 (Reuters) - Gas supplies to Europe will become less reliable as much of its new demand in the coming decade will have to be met with gas from politically unstable countries in Africa. Europe's gas demand is expected to rise by around 20 percent to 580 billion cubic meters (bcm) per year in the next 10 years as economic growth returns and governments plan to switch from coal to gas for power generation. During the same time, supplies to Europe from the North Sea are expected to fall by at least 20 percent as reserves dwindle, while established suppliers such as Russia and Norway will not be able to increase exports by much and...
(Voice of America 09/12/13)
The World Bank has released new reports outlining the health challenges facing six major regions. Those challenges include not only many types of disease, but road accidents as well. The bank says the reports will help policymakers develop evidence-based health programs after the Millennium Development Goals expire. The World Bank has released the reports in conjunction with the Institute for Health Metrics and Evaluation. Timothy Evans is the bank’s director of Health, Nutrition and Population. “What we see when we look beyond the global picture is that there’s a lot of regional specificity to trends in the burden of disease. And so the regional focus just allows us more detail and attention to what’s happening in different regions of the...
(Business News (Ng) 09/11/13)
Africa’s vibrant mobile phone market is forecast to increase four fold in size from a value of $60 billion in 2013 to $234 billion by 2020, according to experts at Manifest Mind LLC, a U.S. based research firm. The continent’s mobile phone market is expected to grow at an annual rate of 21.27 per cent between 2013 and 2020, to reach the set target. Africa’s telecoms sector growth has surged in the last 10 years as the continent has overtaken Europe and Latin America to become the second biggest market in the world for handsets after Asia, according to global mobile phone body, the GSMA. Figures from the GSMA also indicate that from 2007 to 2012 mobile connections in Africa...
(Tanzania Daily News 09/10/13)
Maputo — The African Green Revolution Forum (AGRF) has warned that a Green Revolution cannot materialise in Africa without concerted effort to secure financing for agricultural production. The Forum, which ended on Friday and brought together over 200 delegates from across Africa and the world, focused on the critical role to be played by public-private partnership and inclusive business models in the development of Africa's agriculture. It heard that the global gap in financing for agriculture stood at 450billion US dollars, an issue which was more acute in Africa than anywhere else in the world. Evidence showed that only 10 per cent of African smallholder farmers had access to financing when they needed to expand their production and raise their...
(The Guardian 09/10/13)
Women are increasingly challenging the traditional male monopoly of African politics. In Cameroon, campaigners have worked tirelessly to boost the chances of women standing in the country's pending elections. On a sunny day in early May, in Ndu, northwest Cameroon, a group of women, many of whom have taken the day off from work on their farms, are evaluating the performance of an aspiring politician. One suggests smiling more, another that the candidate project her voice more and not look at her feet while talking. The women are here in the Bishop Shanahan Centre to improve their public-speaking skills and learn more about electoral procedures. There are no party divisions in the room – women from the Cameroon People's Democratic...
(The Namibian 09/09/13)
The Southern African Development Community (SADC) is likely to receive normal to above normal rainfall for the period October to December 2013, the Southern Africa Regional Climate Outlook Forum said in its latest outlook. The forum, however, added that south westernmost Angola, coastal areas of Namibia, west coastal South Africa and northernmost Democratic Republic of Congo (DRC) are more likely to receive normal to below normal rainfall. In the November to December 2013 as well as January 2014 period, bulk of the SADC region is likely to receive normal to above normal rainfall while the greater part of DRC, northernmost and south western Angola as well as western fringes of Namibia and South Africa are likely to receive normal to...
(Voice of America 09/09/13)
The Italian coast guard has rescued more than 700 people in the last two days from boats carrying migrants and refugees. Italian officials say four vessels got into difficulty in waters near Sicily. People from Syria, Egypt, Eritrea, Nigeria and Ghana were rescued. The Italian news agency ANSA reported Saturday that more than 207 people were taken to the island of Lampedusa after their rescue by the coast guard and navy. Among them were two women in the late stages of pregnancy. Another boat with 212 people aboard was being towed to Lampedusa. Two other broken-down boats carrying 293 people were taken to Augusta on Sicily's eastern coast. Violence in Syria and Egypt this year has spurred an increased number...
(AL Jazeera 09/07/13)
As Kenya votes to withdraw from this 'court of last resort', we ask if other African nations will follow suit. Kenya's parliament has voted to withdraw from the International Criminal Court (ICC), sending another strong message from the continent against what is perceived to be interference from the West. The motion was passed after an emergency session of parliament was convened - and the timing could not have been more telling. William Ruto, Kenya's deputy president, is due to appear before the ICC on September 10, on charges of crimes against humanity, while Uhuru Kenyatta, the Kenyan president, is scheduled to face similar charges in November. They stem from violence that broke out after disputed elections at the end of...
(Business Day 09/06/13)
Multinational companies operating in Africa are hitting back at claims that government coffers are being eroded by deliberate intragroup mispricing and shifting of profits across borders to pay significantly less tax. Apart from a lack of clarity on what guidelines to use, reports of bribes to resolve tax disputes, poorly educated tax officials focusing only on their bonuses, and a lack of will to follow global guidelines are emerging. Governments are concerned that money they should be receiving is being diverted to other countries, which then receive the tax revenue. This is leading to major moves by tax authorities to ensure transactions between related companies or parties, such as employers and employees, are done at arm’s length. This means these...
(The Guardian 09/06/13)
Scheme could herald a 'green gold' revolution as mines commit to ban child labour, enforce safety rules and prevent toxic run off. In a bustling area of Nyarugusu, in the heart of Tanzania's gold lands, a stocky man is fanning a dustbin lid of smouldering charcoal, gold ore and mercury on the pavement. Each waft sends a cloud of toxic vapour into the faces of children and adults as they gather to watch. The burning of mercury is a common sight in the streets, homes and cottage-industry mines throughout east Africa. The liquid metal is used to extract the gold and then vaporised to leave behind flakes of the precious metal. But in this dangerous industry, seeds of a gold...
(Reuters (Eng) 09/05/13)
NEW YORK | (Reuters Health) - Despite concerns that iron supplements may increase children's risk of malaria in regions where it is common, a new study found kids in Ghana who received nutrient powder with iron were no more likely to get the disease than their peers. According the World Health Organization (WHO), there were approximately 660,000 deaths from malaria in 2010. About 90 percent of those occurred in Africa, most in children under five years old. Some studies have suggested giving children iron might increase their risk of malaria - including one trial that was halted early due to more hospitalizations for malaria and other infections among children receiving iron. The theory is that malaria-causing parasites can take up...
(Business Day 09/04/13)
AGGREKO, a London-listed provider of temporary power generation, along with South African project partner the Shanduka Group and the Southern African Power Pool (Sapp), has expanded output at its gas-fired power plant at Ressano Garcia, on the Mozambique-South Africa border, to 232MW. In March, the firm signed agreements with Mozambique national power utility Electricidade de Moçambique (EDM) and Namibia’s utility NamPower to supply an extra 122MW from the site. This helps alleviate a "critical shortage of energy" in the Southern African Development Community (Sadc). The region wants to lift energy output by 70% in the next 15 years, investing $170bn in power projects. Ressano Garcia is the world’s first interim cross-border independent power producer project. Aggreko sees significant growth in...
(Zambia Daily mail 09/04/13)
For Jacob Makambwe, trade is what earns him bread and butter for his family of six. Mr Makambwe, 38, lives in Lusaka, but trades in any part of the Southern African Development Community (SADC) where he finds business. He travels across borders, sometimes via Chirundu, Beit Bridge, Mwami or Nakonde-Tunduma ports. Currently, he has ordered 10,000 bags of soya beans from Malawi, which he hopes to bring into Zambia where demand for the product is high. South Africa, though is one of his regular destinations for orders and deliveries, it being the economic hub of the region. However, he feels doing business in SADC is not as easy as per commitment of regional leaders at their annual summits. Free movement...
(Haaretz 09/03/13)
Last week’s announcement that an agreement had been reached with an African country, later identified as Uganda, to accept African migrants from Israel was not only premature but far too optimistic in terms of the number of people likely to be involved, a senior government official said Monday. Haaretz has learned that the contacts with Uganda relate to the absorption of only a few hundred migrants, so even if an agreement is successfully concluded, its influence will be limited. According to the Population, Immigration and Border Authority, some 54,000 African migrants are now living in Israel, more than 90 percent of them Eritrean and Sudanese nationals. The initial announcement about an agreement with Uganda was made last week by Interior...

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