Monday, June 5


International Monetary Fund
  • An IMF team was in Nairobi from May 9 – 22, 2023, for the fifth review of Kenya’s economic program.
  • After engagements, Kenya secured a $544.3 million loan from the International Monetary Fund. 
  • The parties also agreed to extend the duration of the EFF/ECF arrangements by 10 months to April 2025.

Kenya has secured about $544.3 million loan from the International Monetary Fund (IMF) representing 75 percent of the country’s quota. The deal follows staff-level agreement between IMF staff and the Kenyan authorities on economic policies and reforms. It marks conclusion of the fifth reviews of Kenya’s Extended Credit Facility and Extended Fund Facility arrangements.

In the deal, Kenya secured an extension of the program and augmentation of access under those arrangements. The credit is also anchored on a set of reforms under a 20-month Resilience and Sustainability Facility.

Kenya’s economy, the largest in East Africa, has been strained by …

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  • Ghana, a top gold and cocoa exporter rich in oil and gas deposits, is struggling with a $55 billion debt burden.
  • About 70 percent to 100 percent of the government revenue currently goes toward servicing the country’s debt.
  • It is estimated that Ghana’s debt-to-GDP will reach 98.7 percent by the end of 2023.

Crisis-saddled Ghana is seeing about $15 billion in external debt relief by 2026, the International Monetary Fund has said even as the country pursues debt restructuring plan with investors. In December 2022, Ghana suspended payments on most of its foreign debts effectively defaulting as policymakers started restructuring plans as part of a bailout deal with the IMF.

Initial plan was an agreement to suspend service payments of its Eurobonds, commercial loans and most bilateral loans. Further, as an interim emergency measure, the government moved to engage its external creditors in what it thought was best in making …

Diaspora remittances reviving Kenya's economy
  • Kenya is among the top three countries receiving the most international remittances across sub-Saharan Africa, after Nigeria and Ghana. Overall, the US, Saudi Arabia and UK account for nearly three-quarters of total annual inflows into Kenya.
  • Kenyans living abroad sent home $357 million in March 2023, a 15.5 percent increase compared to February.
  • As a whole remittances from the African diaspora are estimated at $95.6 billion annually, making it a key foreign exchange earner.     

Diaspora remittances have risen to become Kenya’s largest foreign exchange earner, surpassing the country’s key exports such as tourism, tea, coffee and horticulture. According to Central Bank of Kenya (CBK) data, diaspora remittances rose by 8.34 percent to $4.027 billion in 2022. In the same period under review, tea exports earned the country $1.2 billion, horticulture $901 million, chemicals $521 million, coffee $301 million and petroleum products $77 million. The widening disparity highlights the crucial role …

  • The credit seeks to restore external sustainability, and strengthen debt management while creating fiscal space for accelerated and inclusive growth.
  • The staff-level agreement is subject to IMF management approval and consideration by the Executive Board.
  • Burundi’s reform program aims to support economic recovery from shocks.

The International Monetary Fund (IMF) has agreed to dispatch a $261.7 million loan to crisis-saddled Burundi, its first in nearly a decade, as the country moves to bolster economic recovery and reforms.

The IMF boost to the poverty-stricken nation follows “a staff-level agreement on economic policies and reforms” that was struck for a new 40-month arrangement under the Extended Credit Facility (ECF) after the lender’s Mission Chief for Burundi, Mame Astou Diouf, visited Bujumbura in February.

Burundi’s reform program aims to support economic recovery from shocks, restore external sustainability, and strengthen debt management while creating fiscal space for accelerated and inclusive growth.

Since 2015, Burundi

Johannesburg South Africa
  • Africa is at the center of global sustainability transitions such as decarbonization of production systems.
  • The continent is also seeing electrification of transportation infrastructure and accelerated use of renewable energy.
  • African Continent Free Trade Area (AfCFTA) is an opportunity to bridge the inequality and vulnerability gap while fostering recovery and transformation in Africa.

Africa – pummeled by a combination of crises – should swiftly invest in and implement people-centered strategies to mobilize financial resources and accelerate continental economic recovery, the Economic Commission for Africa now says.

Speaking during the opening of the ministerial segment of the 55th Session of ECA’s Conference of African Ministers of Finance, Planning and Economic Development, in Ethiopia, Executive Secretary Antonio Pedro said Africa was at the center of global sustainability transitions, such as decarbonization of production systems, electrification of transportation infrastructure and accelerated use of renewable energy, which he said should underpin its recovery from …

US Dollars
  • Usable foreign exchange were recorded at USD 6.56 billion last week, which is equivalent to 3.66 months of import cover.
  • The shilling has continued to weaken against the US Dollar to a record 130 units to a dollar.
  • The country has witnessed a dollar shortage in recent months.

The Kenyan government has put in place a number of measures to tame the country’s dwindling forex reserves and a biting dollar shortage that is being witnessed in the market.

The East African Community (EAC) economic powerhouse is also grappling with a weakening shilling that has dropped by about 12 per cent against the US dollar, the highest in two decades.

It has breached the 130 mark to a dollar, which is a record high. Importers are however accessing the dollar at Ksh145 to the dollar, which has impacted on the cost of imports and commodity prices.

Usable foreign exchange was recorded …

Agriculture driving Côte d’Ivoire’s economy
  • Inflation is cooling gradually but remains stubbornly high in most economies, including Africa, UK and U.S. despite the efforts of central banks according to economic experts. 
  • In 2023 EIU forecast that disinflation in SSA will be slower than on all continents barring Latin America and Asia and Australasia, and that SSA inflation will average 12.5 percent. 
  • Markets are now betting on a longer period of higher interest rates as they begin to take heed of the message from central bank officials.

Inflation is cooling gradually but remains stubbornly high in most economies, including Africa, UK and U.S. despite the efforts of central banks according to economic experts.

Average annual inflation in Sub-Saharan Africa (SSA) in 2022, hit 14.5 percent year-on-year on aggregate according to Economist Intelligence Unit (EIU) and is estimated to have been higher than in any other region of the world except the Middle East and North Africa, …

Kenya's president Ruto

Kenya’s President William Ruto has asked his Cabinet Secretaries to act fast to deliver on his administration’s development programmes, “with speed and efficiency”.

“We made important promises to the people of Kenya, especially those at the bottom of the economic pyramid. And we must deliver,” the president said.

According to Ruto, there are no excuses not to deliver his mandate adding that the government must work as a team and drive the interests of the people.

He was speaking at a cabinet retreat on the implementation of the government’s development priorities for 2023.

In the run up to the August 2022 General Elections, Ruto gave a number of promises under his bottoms-up economic plan.He unveiled a five-point manifesto dubbed ‘The Plan’, which he said would address Kenya’s economic challenges.

Economic recovery in a post-Covid era was one of his main objectives. Ruto also pledged to invest at least Sh250 billion …

To understand the new politics stance and other pro nationals of recent times, we should look to Silicon Valley and the quantified movement of the latest generation.

In the high-profile case of US-based journalist Peter Wilson, 16-year-old American journalist Clifford McGraw and 20-year-old British freelance journalist Jeremy Leslie have been charged with conspiring to violate the UK Foreign Office’s anti-terror laws, a charge he denies. On Monday, UK attorney Andy McDonald revealed that he had spoken.

“Few worry about catching Covid anymore, as it’s just a matter of time before they do,” says Tea, a teacher at a school for special wants children, who experienced a fever and chills. “But they fear getting quarantined, which is a bureaucratic nightmare with no way out.”

Speaking to The Andrew Jackson Society, he added: “I want to express to the people of Scotland: as you know, we are a country of …