Building capacity to help Africa trade better

tralac Daily News


tralac Daily News

tralac Daily News

Poultry industry welcomes green light for imports (Freight News)

The South Africa Poultry Association (Sapa) has welcomed the opening up of imports to fertile eggs for hatcheries including products such as powder and liquid eggs. This comes after Minister of Agriculture Thoko Didiza announced that the government would allow imports of poultry products to ensure sufficient stock for the festive season.

Department of Agriculture, Land Reform, and Rural Development (DALRRD) spokesperson Reggie Ngcobo said the department is working with all stakeholders in the poultry industry and “doing everything possible to contain the Highly Pathogenic Avian Influenza (HPAI) which is plaguing not only South Africa but other parts of the world.

“Since the 1st of September, the department has granted 115 permits for fertiliser eggs, 48 permits for egg powder, 2 406 permits for poultry meat and 24 permits for table eggs. “A permit might be for a shipping container up to 10 000 tonnes,” Ngcobo said. Sapa’s Egg Organisation general manager Abongile Balarane said these are “good steps” to assist the industry during the crisis.

South Africa: African Development Bank’s new 5-year strategy paper focuses on governance and the private sector (AfDB)

The Board of Directors of the African Development Bank Group have approved South Africa’s Country Strategy Paper (CSP) 2023-2028 The Bank’s interventions over the next five years will focus on two priority areas: improving governance and developing the private sector in southern Africa’s largest and most populated country.

The CSP 2023-2028 aims to support the South African government’s efforts to tackle its structural challenges, promote industrialization and establish a faster, more inclusive growth trajectory to reduce poverty for the long term. Its indicative operational program for 2023-2028, amounts to a total of $1,54 billion, comprising six sovereign operations totaling $887 million and seven non-sovereign operations totaling $654 million.

In the first priority area, the African Development Bank will support efforts to improve economic governance and boost private investment to promote inclusive growth and create decent jobs. This will help broaden access to the main social and economic services, improve skills and employability, and increase resilience to external and climate shocks.

In the second priority area – developing the private sector – the African Development Bank aims to improve access to high-quality infrastructure, boost productivity and strengthen competition to promote growth driven by the private sector and job creation through transformative projects. Finally, there will be an emphasis on protecting infrastructure from the effects of climate change to strengthen sustainability and resilience, a goal that will be at the forefront of all infrastructure projects.

Customised manufacturing for other markets is key for sector growth, panel finds (Engineering News)

As consumer behaviour and preferences change in the wake of sustainable options, coupled with incoming decarbonised goods trade regimes, it is worth considering more “glocalisation” opportunities for the South African manufacturing sector. This was the consensus reached by a panel on globalisation and localisation during the second day of the Manufacturing Indaba on October 25. The panel described glocalisation as the modification and customisation of products to suit a local market or local conditions, which is becoming increasingly prevalent among manufacturers globally.

Glocalisation has, in no small part, been enabled by software as a leveller of production, explained software training academy WeThinkCode CEO Nyari Samushonga. She cited the example of mobile money, which originated in East Africa, which solved the issue of many people being “unbanked” and moving money around unsafely or inefficiently. Although manufacturing has layers of complexity, a computer and access to the Internet had allowed for the creation of many useful solutions and product movements in Africa. These digital advancements have also enabled local products to be ordered, shipped and consumed internationally.

EU and Namibia agree on next steps of strategic partnership (European Commission)

Today, on the eve of the Global Gateway Forum, Commission President Ursula von der Leyen and President of Namibia Hage Geingob endorsed the roadmap for the EU–Namibia strategic partnership on sustainable raw materials value chains and renewable hydrogen, supported by €1 billion in investments by the EU, its Member States and European financial institutions. the EU will also support an upcoming study for the development of the Port of Walvis Bay into an industrial and logistics hub for the region, contributing to its integration and economic development.

Commission President Ursula von der Leyen said: “Thanks to its abundant renewable energy potential, Namibia is becoming a front-runner in the green hydrogen space. The EU is proud to be a partner in this transformative journey towards green industrialisation. Together we can further decarbonise our economies, create jobs and ensure a more prosperous and greener future for our societies.”

President of Namibia Hage Geingob said: “Namibia recognises that its world-class renewable energy resources provide a strong foundation upon which we will build a sustainable and impactful green industrial base. Namibia is also cognisant that to fully capture the opportunity at hand, we will have to mobilise fit for purpose capital that appropriately prices risk in order to optimise the cost of said capital. This is a key element that will form the cornerstone of this transformative partnership with the EU.”

Govt prepares for green hydrogen legislation (The Namibian)

The Ministry of Mines and Energy is set to convene its first-ever workshop to lay the groundwork for the development of legislative measures to facilitate the implementation of Namibia’s green hydrogen projects next week. The workshop aims to address the absence of existing regulatory frameworks for green hydrogen projects, which poses a significant challenge to their successful implementation.

Green hydrogen commissioner James Mnyupe says the workshop will culminate in the development of a legislative roadmap and the establishment of specialised working groups to address pivotal aspects of the new legislation. Capital costs and technological complexities associated with green hydrogen production require a supportive legal environment to foster investment security.

“This initiative underscores Namibia’s commitment to sustainable energy practices and the ambition to emerge as a leader in the green hydrogen industry, while also engaging international experts to inform decisions based on global best practices,” Mnyupe says. Meanwhile, Namibia’s green hydrogen programme, headed by Mnyupe, is gearing up for a dynamic start in 2024, with a team of eight executives to support the Ministry of Mines and Energy in realising the goals and objectives of the Synthetic Fuels Strategy.Mnyupe says applications for these positions have already received an overwhelming response.

Egypt’s trade exchange with 11 countries in East, South Asia reaches $34.5bln in 2022: CAPMAS (ZAWYA)

The Central Agency for Public Mobilization and Statistics (CAPMAS) released its annual report on Tuesday, revealing the trade exchange between Egypt and 11 countries in East and South Asia during 2022. The report covers China, Malaysia, India, Taiwan, Japan, Indonesia, Pakistan, Thailand, South Korea, Singapore, and Bangladesh.

According to CAPMAS, the total value of trade between Egypt and these countries was $34.5bn in 2022, with a 15.9% increase in Egyptian exports and a 3.9% increase in imports compared to 2021. Egyptian exports to East Asia amounted to $7.7bn, while imports from East Asia reached $26.8bn.

The report highlighted that South Korea was the top destination for Egyptian exports, with a value of $2bn in 2022, up from $0.6bn in 2021. This was mainly due to the export of liquefied natural gas to South Korea. India came second, with a value of $1.9bn in 2022, down from $2bn in 2021. Crude oil was the main item exported to India.

Togo Economic Update: Unlocking Togo’s Growth Potential (World Bank)

According to the Togo Economic Update released today by the World Bank, trade openness and increased private investment mobilization will be key to unlocking Togo’s growth potential. Titled Unlocking Togo’s Growth Potential, the report begins with an analysis of the performance of Togo’s economy, which has been buffeted by multiple shocks since 2020, and the drivers of growth over the medium term. Against the backdrop of a persistently challenging global environment, economic growth is expected to remain at around 5.2% in 2023 and 2024, before gaining strength and climbing to 5.8% in 2025, buoyed by a rebound in external demand and favorable conditions for private investment.

The second part of the report focuses on the role of regional integration in accelerating Togo’s development and underscores the importance of cross-border trade, the advantages of the Port of Lomé, and the potential role of the African Continental Free Trade Area (AfCFTA) in trade openness and foreign investment mobilization. Improved connectivity with landlocked countries is expected to promote domestic exports and transit trade, thereby contributing to the development of secondary cities along the Lomé-Ouagadougou-Niamey corridor.

MAN raises alarm over implications of lifting importation ban on 43 items by CBN (Tribune Online)

Manufacturers Association of Nigeria (MAN) has raised the alarm over implications and dangers envisaged on the reversal of the 43 items on the prohibition list by the Central Bank of Nigeria (CBN), describing it as policy summersault. In a statement by the Vice President of MAN, South-West Zone, Dr. Kamoru Yusuf, who is also the Chairman Basic Metal, Iron and Steel and Fabricated Metal Products, said that reversal of the 43 items “is not only dangerous but also very unhealthy for the nation’s economy”.

“The effect of the reversal and removal of ban on the 43 items will create a serious setback on the productive sector; thereby impacting negatively on virtually all other critical areas; such as unemployment, youth restiveness, wrong declaration at the ports, importation and flooding of Nigeria market with substandard products and above all, proliferation of the country with arms and ammunitions.

Foreigners exploit gaps in freight forwarding to dominate sector (The Guardian Nigeria)

Indigenous freight forwarders have expressed fear of Indians, Chinese, Koreans and Lebanese currently and nearly monopolising the entire maritime trade due to discordance among local freight forwarders, thereby posing threat to Nigerians’ participation in the African Continental Free Trade Area (AfCFTA) agreement.

The former Interim President, Association of Nigerian Licensed Customs Agents (ANLCA), Ujubuonu Pius, said foreigners dominate Nigeria’s trade from point of manufacture, logistics to clearance at port of loading and clearance at the port of the discharge, local logistics to the warehouse of the importer and even open windows for retail.

He said the threat to the freight forwarders in Nigeria is multi-dimensional, internal and external, noting that the many fragmented associations and groups speaking and working across purposes have given room for foreign domination of the business in the country. Pius said the discordance among the freight forwarders is unhealthy for advocacy to save the business from foreign invasion.

Why FG must restrict solid minerals export – MMNL boss (Vanguard)

At Africa Cassava Conference, a humble plant can power trade (ITC News)

Fisheries and aquaculture can grow to US$1bn sector: Prof Jiri (The Sunday Mail)

FISHERIES and aquaculture play a critical role in food security and have the potential to grow into a US$1 billion sector, thereby significantly contributing to local economic growth. These remarks were made by Permanent Secretary in the Ministry of Lands, Agriculture, Fisheries, Water and Rural Development Professor Obert Jiri while officially opening the two-day Fisheries and Aquaculture Policy review in Harare on Wednesday.

“Fisheries and aquaculture remain key to Zimbabwe’s economy, providing food security, livelihoods and economic opportunities for many communities. “It is a sector that can grow to a US$1 billion sector, which is an immense contribution towards the achievement of our overall US$10 billion agricultural sector by 2030,” Prof Jiri said.

The policy review seeks to accelerate the alignment of Zimbabwe’s policy to the African Union (AU) and other relevant international frameworks that promote sustainable development and economic growth in the fisheries sector.

The 8th Pan African Forum on Migration (PAFoM-8) Theme: “Bolstering Free Movement and Trade Nexus in AFCFTA: Optimizing Benefits of Migration, Labour Migration for Development” (AU)

The 8th Pan African Forum on Migration (PAFoM-8) takes place on 31st October – 2nd November 2023 in Gaborone. It will, amongst others, contribute to the AU theme of the year 2023 “Acceleration of AfCFTA Implementation” by unpacking the linkages between the AfCFTA, Free Movement of Persons, Migration and Labour Migration across the continent. Special emphasis will be placed on women and men migrant workers, as well as discuss the good examples and mechanisms through which different stakeholders (countries of origin and countries of destination, civil society organizations and social partners) can highlight benefits derived from an integrated economic development for Africa.

The forum aims to, inter alia, provide key recommendations for concrete initiatives that illustrate the nexus between trade and the free movement of people, especially labour, on the continent, and the resultant contribution to continental integration and AfCFTA implementation; advance dialogue to deconstruct barriers towards advancement of Free Movement of people in Africa; and explore digital technological advancement for gathering of accurate data and information to generate critical statistics in contexts of Free Movement, Labour Migration and Migration for development.

Boosting refineries necessary to combat surge in Africa’s energy imports: ARDA exec sec (Oil Review Africa)

African Energy Week (AEW) 2023 hosted a high-level panel discussion analysing trends within the continent’s downstream segment, as African countries seek to ensure optimal exploitation of domestic resources for energy security, affordability and independence

“Fossil fuel demand in Africa will grow by 45% to 50% over the next three decades, hence the need to boost refinery and storage capacity to avoid the continued surge in energy imports which are increasing prices across the continent,” stated Anibor Kragha, executive secretary, African Refiners and Distributors Association (ARDA), in his keynote speech.

While the panel identified a lack of adequate financing as the biggest barrier hindering the growth of Africa’s downstream projects, it served as a platform to showcase best solutions to driving investments within the segment. Kragha emphasised on the role leveraging market-based pricing, the enactment of clear policies and coordination between key sectoral ministries to support investor business plans play in accelerating the flow of investments in the continent’s downstream landscape.

“We have to look at what makes sense from an investment perspective. Not all countries need to have a refinery. We need a tighter and robust intra Africa refinery value chain to ensure intra trading and cooperation between upstream and downstream players. For instance, South Africa, with its four refineries, can be leveraged by the SADC region to refine energy sourced from Namibia and Mozambique for regional energy security,” added Kragha.

Remarks by the First Deputy Managing Director at the Ninth IMF-WB-WTO Trade Research Conference (IMF)

World trade growth is historically low, with no signs of improvement. In fact, it is projected to decline from 5.1 percent in 2022 to 0.9 percent in 2023. Meanwhile, the global trading system is facing several challenges: from geopolitical tensions and fragmentation, to industrial policies, to climate change.

Weak global trade growth is likely to reflect not only the path of global demand, but also growing trade policy uncertainty and rising trade barriers. Last year almost 3,000 trade restrictions were imposed—nearly 3 times the number imposed in 2019. In addition, foreign direct investment is now increasingly driven by geopolitical preference rather than business fundamentals. This points to a shift toward inward- and alliance-oriented policies, which often are ineffective.

Of course, the surge in government intervention is tightly linked to a resurgence in industrial policy. In 2023 alone, the number of industrial policy measures increased nearly sixfold. Emerging markets have also increased their use of industrial policies, although they have relied less on subsidies and more on trade restrictions such as tariffs and export controls. While industrial policies can help address market failures, they have historically been costly and often failed.

Research by the IMF, WTO, and others shows that fragmentation could dramatically impact the world economy, costing up to 7 percent of GDP and possibly more for certain countries.

Senior Officials Meeting paves way for progress on deliverables at MC13 (WTO)

A two-day meeting of senior trade officials concluded at the WTO on 24 October with encouraging signs that negotiators in Geneva will have the political backing to achieve outcomes at their upcoming 13th Ministerial Conference (MC13) early next year. The Director-General said it was clear that negotiators in Geneva now have the political mandate to try and achieve breakthroughs at MC13 on issues such as agriculture and food security, dispute settlement reform, the e-commerce work programme and moratorium, the “second wave” of fisheries subsidies negotiations, and development issues, among others.

Agriculture negotiators discuss new proposals submitted by WTO members (WTO)

WTO agriculture negotiations were enriched by a new stream of members’ submissions on a variety of topics during meetings on 19-20 October. The Chair, Ambassador Alparslan Acarsoy of Türkiye, thanked members for their active engagement and their ongoing efforts to narrow gaps. In total, members discussed six new submissions on the topics of export restrictions, domestic support and food security.

Marrakech Meeting on SDRs Rechanneling: Accelerating Development Finance Through Multilateral Development Banks (AfDB)

The African Development Bank (AfDB), Inter-American Development Bank (IDB), the Rockefeller Foundation, and the Center for Global Development came together to co-host a high-level meeting on October 13th to discuss the rechanneling of Special Drawing Rights (SDRs) from contributing countries through Multilateral Development Banks (MDBs). The objective is to boost their development and climate resilience lending to countries most in need. The meeting took place on the sidelines of the Annual Meetings of the International Monetary Fund (IMF) and the World Bank Group in Marrakech, Morocco.

Participating ministers, senior government officials, and civil society representatives discussed the multiple crises facing developing countries as a result of the COVID-19 pandemic, the war in Ukraine, and the resulting food crisis. The meeting also focused on the challenges countries face in accessing international capital markets in a high inflationary and high interest rate environment. They highlighted the urgent need for additional concessional resources to finance economic recovery, climate change and to give countries the fiscal space to manage debt burdens sustainably.

Former World Bank boss tells MDBs to put human capital and creative partnerships at the heart of development

Hand in Hand Investment Forum: Spotlight on Sahel and Dry Corridor regional initiatives (FAO)

Governments from two critical regions, Central America’s Dry Corridor and Africa’s Sahel, presented dozens of projects aimed at boosting agricultural production and food security in a sustainable and profitable way at the Hand-in-Hand Investment Forum 2023. Participating governments met with traditional donors, multilateral development banks and representatives of the private sector and foundations at the national government-led event, organized by the Food and Agriculture Organization of the United Nations (FAO) and held during the World Food Forum (17-20 October)

While some 31 countries pitched national-priority investable projects in agrifood systems, all of them benefiting from FAO’s specialized technical analysis and investments expertise, considerable attention was given to two regional initiatives involving multiple countries facing similar challenges. The two initiatives generated more than $6 billion in pitches, for around 110 investments and affecting 149 million beneficiaries, ranging from small-scale irrigation networks and water storage facilities to digital soil mapping and measures to boost regional trade.

Quick links

African Caucus Meeting: Statement by the Chairman of the African Caucus and the Managing Director of the IMF

‘We have to be as creative as counterfeiters’ - seven takeaways from the Anti-Counterfeiting World Law Summit

Green Climate Fund confirms FAO’s role in supporting countries’ access to climate action resources

‘Tipping points’ of risk pose new threats, UN report warns


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