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Africa Brief: City growth, Zimbabwe coffers, Accra for investors, and more

Cities hold key to African growth, survey finds

Accra, Ghana’s booming capital, was identified as having the highest growth potential of any city on the continent, according to the MasterCard African cities growth index, launched in Johannesburg on January 29th. The index was produced by Prof George Angelopulo of the University of SA and Prof George Roger of the University of Cape Town on behalf of MasterCard.

Accra, Lusaka and Luanda, the capital cities of Ghana, Zambia and Angola respectively, have been identified as the cities with the highest potential for growth over the next five years, according to the index. Harare (Zimbabwe), Kano (Nigeria), Abidjan (Cote d’lvoire), and Khartoum (Sudan) were deemed to have the lowest growth potential of the 19 cities examined in the study.

Growth factors included health, education governance, infrastructure development, and the ease of doing business.  Johannesburg achieved lower scores and appeared eight because of lower growth expectations owing to its relative maturity compared with other African cities, while Durban and Cape Town appeared at 10th an 11th respectively.

The Africa Knowledge Forum is examining how cities across Africa are playing an increasingly important role in driving regional, national and international growth and competition. The index used data compiled between 2009 and 2011 to arrive at its findings Factors considered included, gross domestic product, growth per capita, household consumption expenditure growth, governance factors and ease of doing business.

Net capital inflows to sub-Saharan Africa are projected to nearly double from $43.4bn in 2008 to $86.1bn in 2015, the World Bank said this month

For the full story, read Cities hold key to African growth, survey finds by Helmo Preuss and Khulekani Magubane, published in Business Day on 30/01/2013.

Zimbabwe left with $217 in coffers

After paying public workers’ salaries last week, the balance in cash-strapped Zimbabwe’s government public account stood at just $217 (R1 960), Finance Minister Tendai Biti said yesterday:

Last week when we paid civil servants there was $217 (left) in government coffers. The government finances are in paralysis state at the present moment. We are failing to meet our targets.

The Finance Minister said that they have left with no choice but to ask the donors for cash.

For the full story, read Zimbabwe left with $217 in coffers by SAPA-AFP, published in The Star, Business Report on 30/01/2013.

Accra is most attractive city for Investors

Accra had the highest Private Consumption Expenditure average growth rates between 2010 and 2012. There are various factors taken into account in determining these growth rates such as growth in gross domestic product per capita and growth in household consumption.

Lusaka and Luanda were described as medium growth rates, whereas most of South Africa’s cities had medium to low growth rates. Johannesburg was assessed of having a growth rate of approximately 4%. It was stated that without strong domestic demand the economies can’t sustain high growth rates.

For the full story, read Accra is most attractive city for Investors by Ethel Hazelhurst, published in The Star, Business Report on 30/01/2013.

Nigeria seeks to boost mining with attractive concessions

Nigeria is offering mining concessions to companies to increase the revenue earned from non-crude minerals. In the 3rd quarter of 2012 the gross domestic product from these minerals was only 0.43%.

The Steel and Mines Development Minister from Nigeria said their goal is to increase this to 3% by 2015. Companies will be incentivised by government to increase revenue in these minerals to help government reach their target of 3% by the year 2015.

These incentives include increased capital allowances, reduced customs and import duties for mining equipment and tax holidays for 3 to 5 years.

For the full story, read Nigeria seeks to boost mining with attractive concessions by Elisha Bala-Gbogbo, published in The Star, Business Report on 30/01/2013.

David Okwara

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