Tuesday, June 6

Industry and Trade

Zimbabwe has relaxed regulations barring the importation of basic commodities to avert a shortage of goods. www.theexchange.africa
  • Zimbabwe has relaxed regulations barring importation of basic commodities to avert shortage of goods ahead of elections.
  • The move not only bolsters the domestic market but also improves Zimbabwe’s exports with SADC and China.
  • In March, South Africa emerged as Harare’s primary source of imports, contributing 37.6 percent of the total. China, Singapore, India, and Zambia followed accounting for 19.2 percent, 16.7 percent, 3.7 percent, and 3 percent respectively.

In a strategic move aiming to avert looming drought of essential goods ahead of 23 August 2023 elections, authorities in Harare have rolled out bold steps, relaxing rules that are choking the flow of Zimbabwe imports. The strategy further aims at countering escalating prices and ensuring smooth flow and access of essential goods in the country.

Minister of Finance and Economic Development, Mthuli Ncube, has announced the complete elimination of import restrictions on basic goods. The initiative will be complemented …

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  • As of 2021, the value of Brazil-Africa trade was $7.4 billion, being 56 percent drop from $17 billion in 2011.
  • Brazil’s energy giant Petrobas left Africa in 2020, selling off its subsidiary, Petrobas and Gas BV.
  • President Lula: “Brazil would not be what it is today without the participation of millions of Africans”.

The Brazilian Trade and Investment Promotion Agency (ApexBrasil) has mapped out potential investment and trade opportunities across Africa, a pointer to a new era of economic relations between the two regions that literally sit on opposite sides of the south Atlantic Ocean.

The move is part of the organ’s broader efforts to promote Brazilian products and services abroad and attract foreign investments to strategic sectors.

Historically, it is only fair that Brazil increases its economic and bilateral relations with Africa, a continent where over half of her population trace their origin.

After a recent major drop in …

GMO Maize
  • World hunger is not the result of food shortage, and opposition to gene-edited crops, but due to political strife.
  • Global food production is sufficient to feed all, but skewed distribution systems create a huge shortfall in countries.
  • Analysis shows that even if GMOs were adopted globally, food shortage will persist.

Globally, Genetically Modified (GM) crops have been touted as the magic wand that could end world hunger. The ability of gene-edited crops to produce more over shorter periods of time and their resistance to diseases has been lauded. Further, GMO’s ability to resist poor weather conditions occasioned by climate crisis are earning them acceptance across nations.

These traits make Genetically Modified Organisms (GMOs) a solution to global food shortage. Increasingly, naturally maturing crops are yielding little, and their long gestation periods leave them vulnerable to climate crisis. Further their vulnerability to pests and diseases drastically cuts yields, exacerbating food shortages.…

Idorenyin Obong and Femi Aghedo
  • Grey’s expansion in the East African Market follows $2 million seed funding of the West African company.
  • Grey CEO AIdorenyin Obong says the Kenya office will help the firm navigate its planned operations across East African Community. 
  • The company has also privately launched Grey Business, a borderless business banking for startups. 

Nigerian Fintech startup Grey has picked Kenya as its East African hub as it expands operations into the largest economy in the East African Community. The move follows $2 million seed funding the West African company raised as it eyes Uganda and Rwanda in the near future.

Already, the firm’s platform is live in Tanzania and Kenya with over 300,000 users. Grey CEO AIdorenyin Obong says opening offices in Kenya will help the firm navigate the markets in the East African Community. 

“Kenya’s Diaspora remittance is very vibrant as remittance inflows to Kenya have increased tenfold in the last

Potatoes Africa
  • The average potato yield in Sub-Saharan Africa stands at 7.8 tonnes per hectare.
  • This is too low compared with India at 23.7 metric tonnes per hectare and a global average of about 21 tonnes.
  • Whereas many African countries with vast agricultural potential import the crop, Egypt is an exception.

With the exception of Egypt and South Africa, the continent is a net importer of common food crops including potatoes despite the huge potential of many countries to grow the tuber that can tackle Africa's food crisis.

Grown in over 125 countries and consumed by at least a billion people every day, potatoes are arguably one of the world's most important root crops.

According to FAO, the average potato yield in Sub-Saharan Africa stands at 7.8 tonnes per hectare. This is too low compared with India at 23.7 metric tonnes per hectare and a global average of about 21 tonnes. Data…

  • Organizations like the Japan International Cooperation Agency (JICA) have pioneered several African investment opportunities.
  • Mitsui & Co Ltd has announced plans to resume constructing the multibillion-dollar Mozambique natural gas project.
  • Toyota Tshusho covers automobiles, pharmaceuticals, beverages, and energy, employing over 22000 Africans.

Africa’s international relations are strengthening as the Japanese government seeks to shore up investment opportunities in Africa. The African Development Bank Group President Dr Akinwumi Adesina has been wooing investors from Japan to trade with Africa. His primary objective was to showcase the enormous investment opportunities within the continent that would improve its development in the long run.

The move comes even as Japan Prime Minister Fumio Kishida led his country’s charge with a tour of four critical economic points in Africa; Kenya, Egypt, Ghana and Mozambique.

A renewed Africa-Japan partnership confirmed by AfDB

The AfDB has been on a mission marketing various investment opportunities across African countries

A panel discussion on AfCFTA.
  • By enhancing intra-African trade, AfCFTA estimates that the continent with gain $195 billion by 2045.
  • These gains are projected to be mainly realised in industry, services, agrifood, and energy sectors.
  • By collaborating under AfCFTA, countries can greatly boost regional supply chains for the global electric vehicles market.

African countries need to embrace a set of reforms critical in driving Africa's free trade plan, AfCFTA. The call comes even as more African leaders sign the agreement on the African Continental Free Trade Area (AfCFTA).

AfCFTA has the potential to transform regional trade and thereby lift billions of livelihoods in Africa out of poverty. To realise these benefits however African leaders need to go beyond blueprints.

"It is not for lack of blueprints that Africa has not structurally transformed," United Nations Economic Commission for Africa (UNECA) Secretary-General Antonio Pedro said.

Mr Pedro was speaking at the Africa Regional Forum by UNECA on…

  • DR Congo’s top government officials woo UAE investors at the Annual Investment Meeting 2023 in Abu Dhabi.
  • From mining to agriculture to energy DR Congo is the global centre of billion-dollar focus sectors.
  • In February 2022, logistics giant DP World started the construction of Banana Port, near Kinshasa.

DR Congo is inviting investors from the United Arab Emirates to bet big on the country’s vast investment opportunities. From mining to agriculture and fishing, to health, DR Congo is the global centre of billion-dollar focus sectors. DRC is the second-largest country in Africa with vast deposits of natural resources.

Speaking at the ongoing Annual Investment Meeting 2023 in Abu Dhabi, top government officials from DR Congo said the country’s ongoing legal and tax reforms are making the country ready for business.

The Annual Investment Meeting has attracted participants from 170 countries for its 12th edition in Abu Dhabi city, UAE.

At …

  • According to their announcements, Germany would take professionals, skilled worked and semi-skilled Kenyans.
  • German has promised to fund, extend and modernize the country’s TVET institutions and centres of excellence from levels three to seven.
  • They will create a framework for linking Kenyan Technical and Vocational Training (TVET) colleges with chosen TVET colleges in Germany.

Kenya and Germany struck a deal to increase the rate of International Jobs in Africa. According to reports, Germany agreed to allow Kenyans to fill 250,00 unfilled positions to help both countries with their impending unemployment rate.

Due to this partnership, Kenya cannot deal with its corrosive low employment rate, significantly dragging its economy down.

Kenya’s History with low job rates

It is common to hear the wails of Kenyan Youths when t comes to their country’s employment rate. These days most individuals turn to entrepreneurship to sustain their livelihood while “tarmacking” the town streets to