Monday 23 October 2017
(Xinhuanet 10/20/17)
KIGALI, (Xinhua) -- Rwanda is looking for big investments in renewable energy sources in order to stimulate the country's green economic development, top government officials said Thursday. Rwanda has a lot of untapped investment opportunities in the renewable energy sources, said Claire Akamanzi, chief executive officer of the Rwanda Development Board (RDB) at a renewable energy conference held in Rwanda's capital, Kigali. She said Rwanda is looking for investors in various renewable energy options available across the country. Rwanda has set clear targets in renewable energy and other power generation sources, as it is targeting to achieve 100 percent access to electricity countrywide by 2024. Rwandan Prime Minister Edouard Ngirente in September presented the government's...
(AFP (eng) 10/18/17)
Rent-a-room giant Airbnb said Tuesday that it had provided accommodation for 1.2 million visitors to Africa over the last year -- double the previous year as tourism expands across the continent. The website now offers more than 100,000 accommodation options in Africa, global public affairs director Chris Lehane said on a visit to Johannesburg. "It's an incredibly rich and diverse continent, an incredibly dynamic place, certainly a big part of our future," Lehane told AFP. Airbnb was founded in 2008 and offers accommodation ranging from single bedrooms to whole homes in 65,000 cities in 191 countries. The company announced Tuesday that it would invest $1 million (850,000 euros) in Africa by 2020 to "promote and support community-led tourism projects". "For...
(APA 10/16/17)
APA-Dakar (Senegal) - The president of the African Development Bank, Akinwumi Adesina, will deliver the Norman Borlaug Lecture on Monday 16 October as part of the World Food Prize events taking place from October 16 to 20, 2017 in Des Moines, Iowa, USA. The Norman Borlaug Lecture under the title: “Betting on Africa to Feed the World”, will be held on World Food Day, October 16, in conjunction with the annual World Food Prize celebration. AfDB President Adesina will receive...
(AFP (eng) 10/10/17)
Economic growth in sub-Saharan Africa is set to accelerate to 3.4 percent next year, the International Monetary Fund said Tuesday, citing Nigeria's recovering oil and agricultural sectors. The IMF said in its latest World Economic Outlook report that the region would grow by 2.6 percent this year after 1.4 percent in 2016. "Growth is expected to rise gradually," it said, while noting that the rate would be uneven and "barely above population growth". GDP in the west African powerhouse Nigeria...
(Reuters (Eng) 10/05/17)
NAIROBI (Reuters) - Hilton Worldwide Holdings Inc. (HLT.N) plans to spend $50 million over the next five years to add 100 hotels to its chain in Africa, it said on Thursday, joining other chains keen to tap growing business and international travel on the continent. One property will open in the Kenyan capital Nairobi by the end of this year and another in the Rwandan capital Kigali in 2018, it said in a statement. There was 11 percent growth in...
(AFP (eng) 09/29/17)
Government shutdowns of the internet have cost sub-Saharan Africa about $237 million since 2015, according to a study released Friday, as authorities increasingly implement planned disruptions. At least 12 countries have had internet shutdowns, often before elections or when protests erupt, with mobile internet networks most recently suspended in Togo during opposition demonstrations. "Internet disruptions, however short-lived, undermine economic growth, disrupt the delivery of critical services, erode business confidence, and raise a country’s risk profile," the CIPESA report said. The Collaboration on International ICT Policy for East and Southern Africa (CIPESA) released its...
(Bloomberg 09/28/17)
The country is suddenly brimming with high-end options. From the balcony of my villa at daybreak, I can see the nearby village creaking to life. Children are walking to school in their blue uniforms, and a farmer slings a hoe into the ground. The Africa of travelers’ imaginations is defined by vast open spaces—the treeless plains, the lonely desert—but Rwanda is the most densely populated country on the continent, and a trip here comes with an awareness that you’re sharing...
(Xinhuanet 09/27/17)
Rwanda Revenue Authority (RRA) on Monday auctioned a multi-million-dollar mall located in the center of Capital Kigali, belonging to exiled tycoon Tribert Rujugiro Ayabatwa. Ayabatwa was listed Africa's Number 1 Tobacco man by Forbes in 2014. He is the founder and controlling shareholder of Pan African Tobacco Group (PTG), one of the continent's largest indigenous manufacturer of tobacco products. He was accused of working with Rwanda National Congress, a political organization formed by Rwandan elements based in exile with intent...
(Bloomberg 09/27/17)
Studio 189, a label founded by actress Rosario Dawson and fashion executive Abrima Erwiah, is reinvesting in its African roots. It’s hard enough to build a fashion brand, let alone an empire. Rare is the person who makes a mission of using fashion to build communities. Such is the case with Studio 189, a label founded by longtime friends Abrima Erwiah (formerly a marketing executive at Bottega Veneta) and Rosario Dawson (an enduring star most recently seen in Netflix’s Marvel...
(Financial Times 09/26/17)
BNP Paribas is back in the crosshairs of the authorities, this time in France, where the public prosecutor has opened an investigation into allegations of complicity in the 1994 Rwandan genocide by France’s biggest bank. The probe, which does not imply any guilt, will be led by three investigating magistrates after a complaint against BNP was filed this summer by three French civil society organisations, according to a spokesman for the prosecutor. The bank is accused of transferring more than...
(Reuters (Eng) 09/26/17)
Israel’s Elbit Systems Ltd said on Tuesday it won a contract worth $240 million to provide a wide array of defense electronic systems to an unnamed country in Africa. The contract, which will be carried out over a two-year period, is comprised of Directed Infra-red Counter Measure (DIRCM) systems to protect aircraft from shoulder fired missiles, based on passive infrared systems, and includes missile warning systems, radio and communication systems, land systems, mini-unmanned air systems and helicopters upgrade.
(Voice of America 09/25/17)
African first ladies and activists hailed progress that some governments on the continent are making on gender equality. They met on the sidelines of the United Nations General Assembly in New York. “We used to have 23 percent female representation in parliament but, with the stroke of a pen it went up to 48 percent. So, we managed to double our female representation with that decision,” said Namibia’s first lady Monica Geingos at a roundtable invitation-only event co-hosted by the...
(The New Times 09/22/17)
Rwandan specialty coffee processors are looking to clinch key export deals at the ongoing annual Specialty Coffee Conference and Exhibition (SCAJ) in Japan, enabling them to expand the export market and attract new buyers. The expo, that started on September 20 and closes today, brought together all sorts of coffee specialties across the world and their owners, including five Rwandan coffee companies and a National Agricultural Export Board (NAEB) representative, to create more market linkages, NAEB said in a statement yesterday. Through meeting and seminar opportunities at the conference, it is expected that Rwanda specialty coffee brands will be promoted and gain more visibility at the international market...
(The New Times 09/21/17)
Rwanda is among 11 African countries selected to benefit from a $280-million fund to support agriculture on the continent under the management of the Alliance for a Green Revolution in Africa (AGRA), an organisation that works to improve agricultural output on the continent. The fund, to be provided by the Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation, the Rockefeller Foundation, and the US Agency for International Development (USAID), will be used to spur agricultural transformation in the selected countries. The beneficiary countries...
(The East African 09/21/17)
East Africa has received $1.6 billion from foreign investors, Kenya taking the bulk of the 55 deals recorded in the past eight months. Data from I&M Burbidge Capital shows that the initial public offering of Vodacom Tanzania, and the purchase of Sadolin Paints by Japanese firm the Kansai Paint were some of the region’s biggest deals. The Vodacom IPO raised $213 million, with foreign investors buying 40 per cent. Tanzania emerged as the second largest market for private equity deals,...
(The New Times 09/18/17)
Bank of Kigali is the Best Bank in Rwanda, according to the 2017 African Bankers' Awards for the East Africa region organised by EMEA, an elite London based finance magazine. The award, announced last week, is BK's latest following a spate of victories on the local scene. It is not the first time BK is winning the coveted EMEA Award for best bank category. Since 2009, Bank of Kigali, which is celebrating its 50th anniversary this year, has won the...
(The Guardian 09/18/17)
Anna Jones says that, through selling its cocoa cheaply, Africa is exporting its wealth overseas; while Sue Banford claims that the soya moratorium in the Amazon has done nothing to halt deforestation. Only the final paragraph in your article on cocoa farming causing deforestation in Ivory Coast (Forests pay price for world’s taste for cocoa, 14 September) mentioned the most fundamental thing – the farmer’s livelihood, or lack of it. The low value of his (or more likely her) crop...
(Bloomberg 09/15/17)
Societe Generale SA, challenged on its home turf by Orange SA’s push into banking, is fighting back with a new mobile lender in Africa. The French lender started YUP, a new app for smartphones, in Senegal and Ivory Coast and plans to begin operating in four other sub-Saharan countries this year and next, the company said on Thursday. The bank aims to double its client base to 2 million in the region within three years. “Telcos have opened the way...
(The New Times 09/14/17)
Stakeholders within the Information and Communication Technology sector on Wednesday met at the Kigali Convention Centre (KCC) to discuss ways to develop the internet economy as well as accelerate uptake of internet connectivity. Dubbed the 'Rwanda Peering Day', the event brought together institutions and individuals who are mainly internet service providers in the country to look for ways to enhance and promote internet usage in Rwanda. Peering is the exchange of data directly between internet service providers, rather than via...
(Financial Times 09/11/17)
As dusk settles on Kigali, the Rwandan capital’s year-old convention centre comes alive. Illuminated from within, the futuristic structure, designed to resemble a traditional house, glows like a bright, living ball of light. The $300m facility, which dominates Kigali’s cityscape, is the most visible of several investments that President Paul Kagame is banking on to deliver the country’s next stage of economic transformation. Ground has been broken on an $800m airport, there are 1,200 five-star hotel rooms, and special economic...

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