Africa Brief: Violence in Egypt knocks markets, Ghana’s consumer price inflation, oil thieves in Nigeria and more

Egypt: Deadly violence knocks markets

Egyptian shares have slumped after police moved to disperse two anti- government sit-ins in Cairo, leaving at least 13 dead. The benchmark EGX 30 index retreated 1.1 percent to 5585.12 at 11.11am in Cairo. The death toll reported by the Health Ministry was disputed by the Muslim Brotherhood, which claims hundreds were killed by security forces…

For the full story, read Egypt: Deadly violence knocks markets by Bloomberg, published by The Star, Business Report on 15/08/13

Ghana: Inflation scales three-year high

Ghana’s consumer price inflation rose to 11.8 percent in July from 11.6 percent in June. The rise is just outside the central bank’s target band of 2 percentage points either side of 9 percent.

For the full story, read Ghana: Inflation scales three-year high by Reuters, published by The Star, Business Report on 15/08/13

Oil thieves cost Nigeria $1,2bn in one month

Nigeria, lost about $1,2bn to oil thieves in a single month of this year’s first quarter. Official figures indicate that the trade in stolen oil led to a 17% fall in official oil sales in the first quarter, estimated at 400,000 barrels per day, it said. Such theft involves thieves tap­ping pipelines to syphon crude for sale on the lucrative black market. It often leads to explosions, fires and oil pollution. Recent reports have indicated Nigeria loses about $6bn annually in revenue from oil theft. Anglo-Dutch Shell subsidiary Shell Petroleum Development Company recently shut down the Nembe Creek trunk line in Ba-yelsa State for repairs after it was breached by thieves

For the full story, read Oil thieves cost Nigeria $1,2bn in one month by Sapa-AFP, published by Business Day on 15/08/13

Randgold seeks arbitration on Mali taxes

Africa-focused gold miner Randgold Resources is seeking international arbitration in a dis­pute over 23-billion Central African francs (CFA) (R465m) in taxes, which Mali says it owes the West African state. Mahamadou Samake, group regional manager for West Africa, said Randgold was contesting the bill as the taxes did not form part of the original mining agreement signed by the company.The company has taken the case to the International Centre for Settlement of Investment Dis­putes. The firm’s mining convention stipulated that the company would only be liable to taxes included in that agreement. Mali, has cut its gold output forecast this year to 49 tonnes from 57 tonnes.

For the full story, read Randgold seeks arbitration on Mali taxes by Daniel Flynn and Tiemoko Diallo, published by Business Day on 15/08/13

Eni agrees tax on gas field sale

Italy’s Eni said it had agreed, to pay $400 million (R3.9bn) tax on the $4.2 billion sale of a gas field stake to China and build the country a power station. Eni said it had also agreed to build a 75 megawatt power plant in Mozambique’s northern Cabo Delgado province, where it had made massive gas discoveries in its offshore field.

For the full story, read Eni agrees tax on gas field sale by Reuters, published by The Star, Business Report on 14/08/13

Investors in R15m bid to get 1time flying

A group of Pakistani investors res­ident in SA has offered R15m to 1Time Holdings shareholders for the listed holding company, the investors plan to revive the airline. The investors behind Pak Africa Aviation had been operating in Africa for the past 15 years. Pak Africa has partnered with Oscar Madombwe, former CEO of Air Zimbabwe, in whose company they have a 49% stake. Skywise, said it would like to begin operating services between Cape Town and Johannesburg this month, and is awaiting an air operator certificate.

For the full story, read Investors in R15m bid to get 1time flying by Nicky Smith, published by Business Day on 14/08/13

Mozambique tax deal will see ENI build power plant

ENI has agreed to pay $400m tax on the $4.2bn sale of a gas field stake to China and to build Mozambique a power station. Analysts had estimated that the oil and gas group’s tax bill on the deal could be as high as $1.35bn if Mozambique imposed capital gains tax of 32%, the government has faced criticism over tax breaks granted to foreign firms  ENI said it had also agreed to build a 75MW power plant in Mozambique’s Cabo Delgado province.

For the full story, read Mozambique tax deal will see ENI build power plant by Agnieszka Flak and Stephen Jewkes, published by Business Day on 14/08/13

Massmart sniffs out Kenya chain

Massmart has been looking to gain a foothold in Kenya for some time. Naivas chairperson Simon Mukuha said his company expected to sell a stake of 50% plus one share to Massmart.

Excerpt from Massmart sniffs out Kenya chain by Reuters, published by Business Day on 14/08/13

American firms must share Agoa benefits – US trade chief

US legislation granting duty-free access for imports from many sub-Saharan African nations should ensure American companies share the benefits. The US African Growth and Opportunity Act (Agoa), approved by Congress in 2000 and extended in 2004, is meant to boost economies on the poorest continent.

For the full story, read American firms must share Agoa benefits – US trade chief by William Davison, published by The Star, Business Report on 13/08/13

Carrefour takes careful step into African market

French retailer Carrefour has partnered with distributor CFAO to open shops in eight African countries by 2015. CFAO will own 55% of the venture with Carrefour.  CFAO has helped to limit the risk that Carrefour faces. CFAO’s first project with Carrefour begins this year in Abidjan, Ivory Coast, which should be operational by 2015. Carrefour will have significant benefits due to increased spending power by 2030.

For the full story, read Carrefour takes careful step into African market by Ekow Dontoh, Andrew Roberts and Janice Kew, published by The Star. Business Report on 13/08/13

David Okwara

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