Building capacity to help Africa trade better

tralac’s Daily News Selection


tralac’s Daily News Selection

tralac’s Daily News Selection

Featured tweet, by AUC Deputy Chairperson, Amb. Kwesi Quartey‏: Conference of Ministers is going to be a heavy but interesting agenda for the next couple of days,with frank conversations amongst ourselves

Profiled submissions to 2017 AU-ECA Conference of Ministers, starting today: Pan-African Investment Code

(i) Pan African Investment Code (PAIC) and the African Inclusive Market Excellence Centre: minutes of member states experts: Dr Rene Kouassi N’Guettia (Director of Economic Affairs Department, AU) pointed out that the development of the PAIC is based on the idea that national, regional and continental dimensions must be taken into consideration in order to propose a conducive legal environment to promote the flow of investments in Africa and facilitate intra-African trade and promote cross-border investment. The development of the PAIC forms part of a broader continental framework, namely Agenda 2063, based on a coherent strategic framework for development whose foundation is the promotion of a more inclusive and sustainable growth, the engine of structural transformation on the continent.

(ii) Draft Pan-African Investment Code: table of contents (pdf): Chapter 1: General provisions, Chapter 2: Standards of treatment of investors and investments, Chapter 3: Development related issues, Chapter 4: Investors obligations, Chapter 5: Investment-related issues, Chapter 6: Dispute settlement, Chapter 7: Procedural issues and institutional arrangements

African Capital Markets: Africa in a changing global environment (KPMG)

The Report documents how Africa, as a continent, regionally and by individual country, compares to its main Developing and Transition Economy competitors as an investment prospect for the limited available foreign direct investment. The Report further suggests (pdf) the areas over which individual African countries have control and can work towards improving in order to increase their attractiveness as an FDI inflows destination and their competitiveness in order to best position themselves to cope with and take advantage of the economic benefits offered by the fourth industrial revolution.

Sanlam acquires majority stake in PineBridge East Africa (Sanlam)

Sanlam Emerging Markets Chief Executive Officer, Mr Junior Ngulube, says the acquisition will increase Sanlam’s asset management presence and capability in the region and enable the Group to build a leading position in institutional, affluent and retail investment management across East Africa. The Sanlam Group is one of Africa’s largest financial services providers, with a market capitalization in excess of $11bn and operations in 34 African countries.

OLAM Africa investment programme: project summary note (pdf, AfDB)

Consistent with the leveraging and crowding in approach through large corporates to deliver on the Feed Africa and Industrialize Africa mandates, a $107m corporate loan has been approved to finance part of OLAM’s operations in Africa. This is part of a $200m investment program (OAIP II) that covers two sub-projects, one for creation of industrial scale palm oil refineries in Central and/or West Africa and another for development of 600,000 tons per annum of high quality poultry and fish feed mills in Nigeria. The program will further consolidate OLAM Group’s agricultural value chains on the continent. The programme is fully aligned with the Feed Africa and Industrialize Africa and Improving quality of life for Africans, initiatives under the High 5s. The program also promotes integration through supply chains of Olam Group within Africa. [Backgrounder: OLAM in Gabon]

Tanzania: Mauritius investors to boost sugar production, venture into tourism (Daily News)

Mauritius-based investors Alteo International plans to boost sugar production in Tanzania by increasing sugar estates under its subsidiary, TPC Limited and diversify investments to tourism. According to a statement from Prime Minister’s Office, the investors have asked the government to avail them with opportunity to invest in tourism sector in Kilimanjaro Region which has many tourists attractions including Mount Kilimanjaro, the highest mountain in Africa.

SADC: Food Security Update - January - March 2017

First round crop production estimates for Malawi show an increase in the production of most crops including the staple food, maize. Maize production is estimated at 3.2 million tonnes, up by 36% from 2.4 million tonnes last season. First round crop production estimates for South Africa show an increase in the production of most crops including maize. Maize production is estimated at 13.9 million tonnes, up by 79% from 7.8 million tonnes last season. Fall armyworm outbreak affect crops including maize, the staple food, in DRC, Botswana, Malawi, Namibia, Swaziland, South Africa, Zambia and Zimbabwe. Efforts to control the pest were compromised by heavy rains experienced in some of these areas. However, the impact of the pest attack is expected not to be very significant.

Rwanda eyes cross-border markets to enhance exports (New Times)

According to James Tayebwa, the in charge of regional integration (cross-border trade) at Ministry of Trade, Industry and East African Community Affairs, a total of eight cross-border markets will be constructed by the government at different crossing points to facilitate trade between Rwanda and neighbouring countries – DR Congo, Burundi, Uganda and Tanzania. Tayebwa was giving an update on the ongoing works of the Rubavu Cross-border Market that is being built by government and TradeMark East Africa. Funds for Nyamasheke, Kagitumba and Rusumo cross-border markets have also been secured and construction is expected to start in August, according Tayebwa. [Kenya: Farmers complain over influx of cheap Tanzania produce at border market]

Is East African integration slowing down? (IPPMedia)

The question of the spirit and pace of East African integration was prominent at the just-ended sitting of the East African Legislative Assembly in Kigali. The members were clearly exasperated by what they considered starvation of funds to the Community by partner states which had severely crippled its activities. This prompted members to ask: “Are we really serious about integration?”

Peter Fabricius: Burundi keeps knocking at SADC’s door (ISS)

Kenya: Understanding the Standard Gauge Railway (pdf, KEPSA)

KEPSA and Kenya Railways organized an SGR status update meeting and a site inspection of various SGR-related facilities at the Nairobi SGR terminus at the Syokimau on 2nd March 2017. The objective of the meeting was to appraise the private sector on the status of the SGR as well as inspect locomotives and coaches already shipped from China. Members enquired about the difference or similarities between Kenya’s SGR and Ethiopia SGR. This was highlighted as follows: that the cost for Kenya’s project are not comparable to those of Ethiopia for a number of reasons which include: [Related: SGR presentations (i) SGRR Project Brief (by Eng. Waititu), (ii) About SGR consortium (by Kevit Desai), SGR to be upgraded to electric railroad in four years]

Central Corridor: Tanzania gets Sh110bn Kuwait loan for Nyahua-Chaya road

Malawi: IMF staff complete Review Mission (IMF)

Discussions also focused on the broad parameters of the FY17/18 budget. In so doing, the team emphasized the need consolidate recent improvements in revenue mobilization to contain current expenditures and reorient the budget toward development spending in order to improve resilience and to address critical infrastructure gaps. The team also underscored the need to clear past arrears, implement expenditure commitment controls to prevent their re-emergence and to safeguard debt sustainability in light of the increase in the level of domestic debt.

Ivory Coast: Cocoa slump threatening is deja vu for 80s traders (Bloomberg)

Slumping cocoa prices are testing to the limit top producer Ivory Coast’s efforts to ensure stability for farmers, heightening risks for the domestic economy and world markets. Authorities have warned they’ll have to cut payments to growers. That follows a wave of defaults by local exporters who’d bet on higher prices, costing the government more than $300 million and pushing cocoa futures even lower.

South Sudan, Equatorial Guinea begin collaboration on oil and gas (Premium Times)

The Memorandum of Cooperation was signed by Equatorial Guinea’s Minister of Mines and Hydrocarbons, Gabriel Lima, and South Sudan’s Minister of Petroleum, Ezekiel Gatkuoth. The two nations will use the new partnership as a basis for exchanging information on policy and regulation; promoting upstream, downstream and infrastructure projects; and collaboration between the national oil companies, Nilepet and GEPetrol.

Global distribution of revenue loss from tax avoidance: re-estimation and country results (UNU-WIDER)

International corporate tax is an important source of government revenue, especially in lower-income countries. An important recent study of the scale of this problem was carried out by IMF researchers Ernesto Crivelli, Ruud De Mooij, and Michael Keen. We first re-estimate their innovative model, and then explore the effects of introducing higher-quality revenue data from the ICTD–WIDER Government Revenue Database. Our findings support a somewhat lower estimate of global revenue losses of around $500bn annually and indicate that the greatest intensity of losses occurs in low- and lower middle-income countries, and across sub-Saharan Africa, Latin America and the Caribbean, and South Asia. [The analysts: Alex Cobham, Petr Janský]

European FTA pushes for tougher IPR rules under ongoing trade talks with India (Mint)

The position is stated in a leaked note on the proposed IPR chapter of the negotiations published by non-profit body Knowledge Ecology International at a time negotiations on the chapter are underway in New Delhi. Switzerland proposes that India agree to broader patentable principles, particularly on biologic products; adopt exclusive rights in data used to support the registration of new drugs and vaccines; and eliminate its requirements for local manufacturing of patented inventions. Indian exports to EFTA region grew 13.7% to $1.5bn in 2015-16 while imports contracted by 14% to $19.9bn during the same period.

Today’s Quick Links:

The latest research in economics on Africa: the CSAE round-up

Examining results and accountability at the World Bank: evidence at yesterday’s Financial Services Committee hearing (US House of Representatives)

Burundi joins Afreximbank as participating State

Mauritius: Nationally Appropriate Mitigation Actions workshop

IMF hopes for Mozambique audit in next 2 weeks

Chile looks at Africa for trade and investments

West Africa: NEPAD-IPPF, ECOWAS PPDU discuss infrastructure project preparation collaboration

Why India needs a new logistics network

Robert J. Shiller: Robotization without taxation?

Brazil meat exports plunge 99.9% as more countries add curbs

Trump’s trade pick to pursue stronger relationship with Taiwan

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