Tag Archives | Egypt
French beverage giant Castel, which bottled its first batch of Ethiopian wine this year, is helping change the way outsiders view the country.
The popularity of the internet has taken awhile to catch on in Egypt, with less than 1% of the population online only a decade ago. Today though, there’s a very different picture evident, showing Egypt’s embrace of the digital realm, with Egypt’s Communications and Information Technology Department set to implement three major projects to harness Egypt’s online growth.
Barclays Africa Group is looking to dispose of about R400m assets this year as part of its strategy to exit noncore activities and reduce risk to revenue. The retail and business banking unit is looking to dispose of investment properties while the head office has a number of assets classified as property within corporate real estate services that are classified as held for sale.
The face of banking in North Africa is changing. Regulators across the continent are putting pressure on banks to reform, with the aim of better customer service. While the Arab Spring depressed growth in the region and the worldwide financial crisis hit hard, overall there appears to be sustained economic growth.
In this Africa Brief: East African countries are grappling with the challenge of how to fast-track training of oil and gas engineers after unexpected and continuing discoveries have positioned the region as a future global oil hot spot…Nigeria’s securities regulator was investigating pan-African lender Ecobank International over an alleged misstatement of its 2012 performance, a source at the Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC) said on Friday Nigeria’s SEC held meetings with Ecobank’s board of directors on August 6 to discuss the issue, which was raised by a suspended former head of finance at the bank, the source said, but did not elaborate as to what the bank was accused of misstating…
Egypt is home to more that 82 million people, which is the third largest population in Africa and the largest in the Arab world. Recently, the Northeast African country has been plagued by political instability and waves of protestor violence, impacting a number of sectors, including business and tourism.
Sierra Leone exported $102 million (R1bn) worth of diamonds in the first half of 2013, up from $71m in the same period from 2012. The government collected $5.1m in taxes in line with the 5 percent export levy.
Africa Brief: Violence in Egypt knocks markets, Ghana’s consumer price inflation, oil thieves in Nigeria and more
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…
Africa Brief: Egypt buys less local wheat than last year, Mugabe expected to stay on, mobile data and more
Egypt has bought 3.675 million tons of wheat from local farmers so far this season and will continue to buy from them until 30 July 2013; the state news agency yesterday quoted the country’s main state wheat buyer as saying. “The total amount of local wheat supplied till now is 3.675 tons, 41000 tons less than the same period last year,” state news agency Mena quoted Mamdouh Abdel Fattah, the vice-chairperson of the General Authority for Supply Commodities, as saying.
Africa Brief: Call for power grid investors, Egypt gets boost in Saudi Funding, Ethiopian dam raises concern, and more
Sierra Leone was seeking $3.5 billion (R34.5bn) of investment from the private sector to overhaul its creaking electricity industry with the aim of increasing output tenfold by 2017, Deputy Energy Minister Martin Bash-Kamara said at the weekend. Sierra Leone has one of Africa’s lowest power generation capacities, at just 100 megawatts for its 5.6 million people. Bash-Kamara said the government had signed memorandums of understanding with investors to develop power projects in the mineral-rich country
Egypt’s oil production has been in decline for almost two decades; however this has been offset by the development of the natural gas industry. In fact, natural gas production has increased fivefold since the mid-1990s. Up to around 2004, gas production had increased by just enough to cater for rising consumption levels. Between 2005 and 2006 there was a surge in production, contributing to significantly higher hydrocarbon exports and growth of the region’s GDP.
One sector of Swaziland’s otherwise declining economy -the construction industry -intends to localise construction jobs through new legislation that blocks South African construction firms from doing business in the country without a Swazi partner. The House of Assembly is considering the Construction Industry Council Bill, which forbids exclusive tendering of government projects to foreign firms. It also stipulates that jobs in the private sector cannot be given solely to non-local construction companies.
Not so long ago, for luxury goods retailers the African market boiled down to a tiny elite, in some cases just a corrupt ruling clique. Not anymore. Although millions of Africans remain stuck in crushing poverty, disposable incomes are on the up. Luxury firms like LVMH, which makes Moet and Hennessy luxury drinks as well as Louis Vuitton handbags, are targeting the burgeoning ranks of what South African retailers call “black diamonds “, or affluent African professionals.
Whilst Africa is often perceived as a mysterious, underdeveloped continent, it’s quickly becoming one of the most valuable emerging markets for infrastructure. In fact, infrastructure development – in the form of megacities – is one of the key strategic priorities for senior African leaders. What’s driving infrastructure development in Africa?
Africa brief: Niger Uranium mine strike on hold, Ivory Coast gold mine, Egypt IMF loan deal, cloud services and more
Areva’s Cominak uranium mine in northern Niger returned to work at the weekend after a 48-hour strike but unions warned they would take further action after today if the company did not boost bonus pay Mining unions said they had called their stoppage because Cominak paid workers too low a bonus after under-declaring profits for last year. “This was a warning strike. Cominak’s management has until Monday to make a satisfactory offer, otherwise we will hold another strike,” said Inoua Neino, the general secretary of the National Union of Mine Workers of Niger.
Africa Brief: Zambian bank sees cellphone potential, Mauritius growth, Egypt fuel shortages and more
Zambia National Commercial Bank (Zanaco), which is adding 800 new customers daily, sees further growth by offering cellphone transactions to the almost two-thirds of potential clients in the country who have no bank account. Lenders in Africa’s biggest copper producer have benefited from the economy expanding at an estimated 7.3 percent last year, according to Bank of Zambia data.
Angola, which is Africa’s second-largest oil producer after Nigeria, plans to raise $lbn through a Eurobond issue this year. Angola’s economy expanded 7.4% last year, thanks to a recovery in oil output after technical problems, and the government forecasts growth of 7.1% this year. Other African countries are also seizing the opportunity. Kenya plans to sell a debut $lbn Eurobond in September, Nigeria is planning its second issuance and Ghana is mulling refinancing one and issuing another.
Africa Brief: Central Africa security focus, resources curse, banks post higher losses, Egypt, Uganda, Transnet and more
SA’s government and its military seem to be focused on the problems of central Africa — the geographical region, not the country — but the reasons for the growing involvement are hard to discern. 13 paratroopers were flown home in body bags after extraordinary battles in Bangui with Seleka rebels on March 23. SA is becoming more and more involved with peacekeepers and other military contingents in the Democratic Republic of Congo — with more on the way in a new intervention force in the eastern Kivu region — and in the CAR, and in Sudan’s Darfur region.
BARCLAYS plans to add branches in Egypt this year as it seeks to expand in that country after rivals from France sold local units. Barclays Bank Egypt will boost its branch network by 10% this year and is preparing to offer Islamic banking services. Barclays Egypt, which started operations in the mid-1800s when the country was under Ottoman rule, controls about 1.2% of the assets of Egypt’s 39 banks, data show. Barclays Egypt makes up about 0.1% of the British bank’s asset base of £1.63-trillion of assets as of June last year, according to calculations based on financial statements. The bank is not planning to issue debt to fund expansion. It also has no plans to sell shares to the public, as the British lender’s units in Kenya and Botswana have done.
Economic growth in Zambia should reach 7 percent by the end of this year, deputy central bank governor Bwalya Ng’andu said on Friday Inflation in Africa’s top copper producer should end the year around 6 percent, Ng’andu said.
Egyptian consumer prices posted the biggest monthly increase in more than two years last month after the pound weakened to a record low amid the worst slide in foreign reserves in at least 15 years. Prices rose 1.7 percent month on month compared with 0.2 percent in December, the Central Agency for Public Mobilisation and Statistics said.
Egypt’s central bank cancelled a foreign currency auction that was supposed to take place on 3 February 2013 and said it will announce details of upcoming auctions. This is believed to be a signal of a possible change to a system of currency sales brought in to stem a decline in foreign reserves.
Tanzania bids to cut call costs – Tanzania Communications Regulatory Authority plans to increase the competition between telecoms operators by cutting the interconnection rates telecoms operators charge each other by 69% in March.
Gambian President Yahya Jammeh has declared Friday a rest day to allow for more prayer, social activities and agriculture. This four-day work week will take effect from 1 February.
The April 2012 World Economic Outlook report published by the International Monetary Fund presented a sturdy but cautiously optimistic future for the various African economies. Sub-Saharan Africa particularly recorded a strong 5 percent growth in 2011 and was one of the regions least affected by the global financial crisis. With the exception of South Africa, limited financial ties to Europe helped shield the region from the financial havoc that tore through Western economies in late 2011.