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tralac Daily News

tralac Daily News
Photo Credit: African Business Magazine

Country focus

MPs talk value addition before ratifying SADC protocol (New Era)

After the tabling of the ratification of the Southern African Development Community (SADC) protocol, some parliamentarians feel Namibia still has much more to do before considering the protocol. The motion to ratify the protocol was tabled by the Minister of Industrialisation and Trade, Lucia Iipumbu. Debating the motion in the National Assembly, Popular Democratic Movement (PDM) president, McHenry Venaani, said the question of value addition is central to broaden the debate of industrialisation.

Afreximbank agrees to refinance $1.4 billion Zimbabwe debt-document (Reuters)

The African Import and Export Bank (Afreximbank) has agreed to help Zimbabwe raise funding to refinance $1.4 billion in loans to the pan-African lender, a copy of the agreement seen by Reuters showed on Thursday.The agreement will give the country some breathing space over the loan repayments to Afreximbank, which has become one of the biggest lenders to Zimbabwe after it was shut out from international financial institutions two decades ago for failing to repay its debts.

US renews sanctions against Zimbabwe (The East African)

The United States has renewed its targeted sanctions against Zimbabwe citing President Emmerson Mnangagwa's reluctance to roll out political and economic reforms.US President Joe Biden, in a letter to Congress, said in the last year Zimbabwe's security services had committed several human rights violations.

IMF, Zambia to continue debt relief talks (Eyewitness News)

The debt-ridden southern African country became the continent's first coronavirus-era sovereign default after skipping a $42.5-million (35.5-million-euro) interest payment on a eurobond in November last year.

How low cargo traffic inhibits imports (The Nation Newspaper)

Dwindling ship traffic and the huge number of overtime cargoes at the Lagos ports have become worrisome to stakeholders who have urged the Federal Government to find a solution to the challenges.

China, Egypt ink cooperation deal on technology incubators (CGTN Africa)

Egypt and China signed a deal on Thursday to conduct cooperation on technology incubators, the Chinese embassy in Cairo said. The deal was signed by Shanghai Institute of Microsystem and Information Technology (SIMIT) of the Chinese Academy of Sciences with Egypt’s Electronics Research Institute (ERI), the embassy said in a statement.

African Development Bank lends $27.2 million for 200 MW solar park in Egypt (PV Magazine International)

The board of directors of the African Development Bank (AfDB) approved a loan of $ 27.2 million for the design, construction and operation of a 200 MW solar photovoltaic plant in Kom Ombo, in southern Egypt.

 


News from Africa and Africa’s international trade relations 

Africa is not on track to achieve zero hunger by 2030 (Modern Ghana)

Mr Abebe Haile-Gabriel, Food and Agriculture Organisation's (FAO) Regional Representative for Africa, has disclosed that Africa is not on track to achieve zero hunger by 2030. He said this in a meeting reviewing progress made by the continent towards attaining that goal so far. Co-organised by the Economic Commission for Africa (ECA) and the World Food Programme (WFP), in collaboration with the Government of the Republic of Congo, the meeting is part of the Seventh Session of the Africa Regional Forum on Sustainable Development (ARFSD) that is underway in Brazzaville and virtually monitored by the Ghana News Agency.

DDG Wolff: AfCFTA and WTO can help “knit together” Africa in peace and prosperity (World Trade Organization)

Regional and multilateral integration through the African Continental Free Trade Area (AfCFTA) and WTO membership can help to “knit together an African continent that has been forever fragmented,” Deputy Director-General Alan Wolff said on 4 March. Speaking at the Aswan Forum for Sustainable Peace and Development, DDG Wolff said AfCFTA and the WTO “share a common goal and a common heritage — the use of trade for peace.”

COMESA Launches Campaign to Celebrate Women Entrepreneurs (TechTrendsKE)

The Common Market for Eastern and Southern Africa (COMESA) has launched a regional campaign to popularise a platform for women in business. The platform, known as 50 Million African Women Speak (50MAWSP) is an information and networking hub for women which provides a one-stop shop for them to start, grow and scale up their businesses and to access financial and non-financial services.

East African Community: Harmonisation of taxes remains elusive (CNBC Africa)

About 9 years ago, the East African Community put a plan in motion to harmonise the region’s excise duties and VAT to achieve neutrality for investments and trade and to prevent double taxation. Fast forward to today, the harmonization of taxes remains elusive.

Uhuru drums up support for regional integration (The Standard)

President Uhuru Kenyatta who addressed foreign envoys serving in Kenya on Thursday said that there were positive developments in countries such as South Sudan and Sudan where peace and transitional processes remain on course, adding that Nairobi will continue playing its leading role as an anchor for regional peace and security.

ECOWAS Commission Urged to Include Agric Issues in Vision 2050 (All Africa)

The Economic Community for West Africa States (ECOWAS) Commission has been urged to pay particular attention to issues related to the expansion of agriculture and agribusiness in the development of its Vision 2050. In a communique dubbed "Kyebi Declaration", participants in a consultative meeting for traditional and religious leaders on the vision said the sector had great potential to provide employment for the youth and ensure food security.

 


Global economy 

Poor hit with disproportionately high connectivity costs (IT Online)

High costs for Internet access relative to income remain one of the main barriers to the use of information and communication technology (ICT) services worldwide – and this is particularly true in emerging markets. This is according to a new policy brief from ITU and the Alliance for Affordable Internet (A4AI) which finds that, taking income differences into account, a mobile broadband subscription with at least 1,5Gb of data costs around four times more in developing countries than in developed ones.

What to Expect from the EU-UK Trade and Cooperation Agreement in the Future (Lexology)

Last week, the UK Parliament granted the EU’s request for more time to ratify the EU-UK Trade and Cooperation Agreement (“TCA"). The initial agreement by both parties was that the TCA’s provisional application would end by 28 February 2021.