News: 4.15.2021

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April 15, 2021

ECA Stands Ready to Accelerate Cooperation and Technical Support to Member States

The Economic Commission for Africa stands ready to cooperate and provide technical support to member States so they can meet their national aspirations as well as continental and global goals such as the African Union’s Agenda 2063 and the 2030 agenda for sustainable development. This was announced on April 12 by the ECA’s Sub-Regional Office for Southern Africa Acting Director, Sizo Mhlanga, in his welcoming remarks during a Government of the Republic of Namibia stakeholder validation workshop on the country’s efforts to create an integrated performance management framework that would contribute to the effective and efficient delivery of services to its citizens.

Africa’s Women Traders are Poised to Transform Economies Through Intra-African Trade

The Economic Community of West African States (ECOWAS), in partnership with the UN Development Program (UNDP), is delivering a series of capacity building workshops in Ghana and Cote d’Ivoire for women traders and producers in the ECOWAS region with the aim of guiding them on market entry and operations under the African Continental Free Trade Area (AfCFTA). The workshop series kicked off in Accra, Ghana, the headquarters of the AfCFTA Secretariat, and brings together 20 women traders from the 5 English-speaking member states of the ECOWAS region (Nigeria, Ghana, Sierra Leone, Liberia and Gambia). They represent the agricultural, agro processing, textiles, arts and crafts sectors, as well as trade development agencies.

The ECA Assesses Implementation of its 23rd ICE Recommendations in West Africa and Prepares for Organization of the 24th Session

The ECA organized a virtual meeting on Friday, April 9 with the Bureau of the Twenty-Third Session of the Intergovernmental Committee of Experts and Senior Officers (ICE) for West Africa. This meeting, which is part of the sustained commitment of the ECA Office in West Africa to the Member States, was intended to update and seek advice from the Bureau in the implementation of the 23rd ICE recommendations including the preparation of the 24th Session.

Nigeria’s New Concerns Over Debt Burden from China

There are growing fears between Nigeria and China over the imbalanced relationship, especially with China’s predatory lending bond with Nigeria and the country’s debt exposure to the Asian powerhouse, which has risen geometrically in recent years. Official relations between the two countries date back to February 1971 when Nigeria established diplomatic relations with China, and today Nigeria remains China’s major investment destination in Africa. At an event in Abuja to mark 50 years of Nigeria-China relations, the Chinese Charge d’Affaires in Nigeria, Mr. Zhao Yong, disclosed that China’s trade with Africa has hit $208.7 billion with foreign direct investment totaling $49.1 billion.

Ghana Turns to Capital Markets for 2021 Budget

Money raised from international capital markets will fund Ghana’s 2021 budget and manage a tricky period caused by COVID-19, but raising such large sums is not without risks. The government of Ghana has announced plans to raise up to $5 billion from international capital markets. The Ministry of Finance announced the 2021 International Capital Markets Funding Program on March 9, through which it will issue Eurobonds, and diaspora and sustainable bonds, as well as syndicated and/or bridge loans. International financial institutions Bank of America, Citi Bank, Rand Merchant Bank, Standard Chartered Bank and Standard Bank have all been approached to act as lead managers for the program.

Defiant Villagers Battle to Stop Chinese Coal Project in Zimbabwe

Efforts by the government of Zimbabwe to break a stand-off between Dinde villagers in Hwange and a Chinese investor hit a brick wall with the villagers insisting the coal mining project should not go ahead. Minister of State for Provincial Affairs and Devolution, Richard Moyo was forced to face angry villagers alone after Mines minister Winstone Chitando was a no-show at the meeting with the Chinese mining firm, Beifer Investment. The impasse has been raging since 2019, after villagers blocked exploration work.

Uganda and Tanzania Sign Major Oil Pipeline Agreement

Uganda's President Yoweri Museveni signed the East African Crude Oil Pipeline project agreement on April 11 with his Tanzanian counterpart Samia Hassan Suluhu. "The EACOP Tripartite Project Agreement has been signed by all parties with commitment for realization of the Equal project; for the benefit of all people of Uganda and Tanzania in the spirit of East Africa," said Sam Kuteesa, Uganda's foreign minister. The agreement, signed in the Ugandan capital Kampala, paves the way for the construction of a 1,440 km crude oil pipeline from Uganda's Albertine region to Tanzanian seaport of Tanga.

EVENTS – 4.15.2021

Ninth Conference on Climate Change and Development in Africa.” Cabo Verde. ClimDev-Africa. 23 to 27 August 2021.

Socio-Economic Assessment of the Blue Economy in Rwanda.” Online. ECA. 4 May 2021.