Tuesday, November 28

In your copy of The Exchange this month

  • Monopolising Africa’s food systems: Is Kenya’s GMOs adoption corporate-engineered?
  • DR Congo’s place in Africa’s manufacturing and economic potential 
  • How capital can eliminate hunger in Africa: The role of banks and financial services firms in ensuring food security.  
  • US, world powers jostle for a piece of Ethiopia
  • EU Hypocrisy: Bullying Tanzania, Uganda over oil
Agoa US Africa Relations

The African Growth and Opportunity Act (AGOA) has played a pivotal role in the economic relations between the US and Africa. Since its enactment by the US Congress in 2000, Agoa has offered African nations preferential access to American markets, promoting trade and economic growth. In recent years, however, AGOA has become a focal point in the intensifying competition between the US and China for influence in Africa.

the orange economy | Africa's orange economy

According to John Howkins, the orange economy incorporates industries whose goods and services arise from intellectual property. These include research and development, radio and TV, visual and performing arts, publishing, advertising, music, software, gaming, design, film, crafts, architecture, fashion, and design. Artists, cultural non-profits, and creative businesses can produce and disseminate goods and services that generate jobs, revenue, and quality of life.

South Africa | Africa's biggest economy | Egypt's economy | South Africa's economy | Nigeria's economy

South Africa is set to topple Nigeria and Egypt as Africa’s biggest economy in 2024. This is according to forecasts from the International Monetary Fund. According to IMF’s World Economic Outlook, South Africa’s gross domestic product will reach $401 billion per current price in 2024. On the other hand, Nigeria’s GDP will reach $395 billion, with Egypt’s GDP reaching $358 billion.

South Africa, the continent’s most industrialised nation, is expected to maintain the top spot as Africa’s biggest economy for only one year. In 2025, the country will again lag behind Nigeria and fall to third place behind Egypt a year later. This is according to the IMF’s World Economic Outlook, a report released last week.

Pharmaceutical industry in Africa on the rise.

Africa has taken giant strides to become a global pharmaceutical manufacturing hub, with the sector catching the eye of international investors. For Africa, achieving medical security has become a priority. This is especially so following the painful lessons the continent picked when tackling the COVID-19 pandemic. As other continents got vaccines on preference, Africa was vulnerable due to her overreliance on foreign support.

Kenya's mining sector

The Kenyan government has revoked 1,546 licenses in the mining sector as it gradually resumes licensing, marking the end of nearly four years of a standing moratorium. Principal Secretary Elijah Mwangi, from the State Department for Mining, confirmed that the ministry has undertaken a thorough audit of all mineral rights holders to identify non-compliant rights.

African oil and gas industry | global energy transition

Africa’s oil and gas industry is entering a new era. The world is looking to fast-track its transition from fossil fuels. Consequently, this puts pressure on the continent’s oil and gas-producing nations. Most producing countries remain highly exposed to the global energy transition since their economies depend on oil and gas revenues. Similarly, their oil and gas reserves cost more to produce and, on average, remain more carbon-intensive than those from other regions.

blended fianance

With its immense potential and vast resources, Africa stands at a critical point in its economic growth path. While the continent has promising economic prospects, it also has significant challenges that have impeded growth. A concept known as “blended finance” has gained popularity in recent years as a viable answer to assist governments in overcoming economic challenges. As a result, it is vital to look into what blended finance is, how African economies can leverage its benefits and its crucial role in supporting sustained growth across the continent.

A High Court in Kenya has stopped Kenya Revenue Authority (KRA) from taxing tithes and offering, a move that was vehemently opposed from the onset by religious bodies. www.theexchange.africa

Africa is a continent of diverse religions, cultures, and intricate histories. Christianity is one of the major faiths that has shaped the lives and identities of millions of Africans. The continent has also evolved beyond its spiritual dimension to encompass a thriving business aspect.

Numerous churches and religious organizations have ventured into various economic activities, generating income and wielding significant influence. Consequently, some churches have become mega-churches with thousands of members and millions of dollars in revenue. They often own businesses such as schools, hospitals, media outlets, and real estate investments.

Salva Kiir

Last week, President Salva Kiir of South Sudan stepped into Moscow to meet his Russian counterpart, President Vladimir Putin. Their talks echoed the promise of an expanding relationship. However, an air of curiosity tinged the talks as the pair discussed energy, trade, and the ever-hot subject of security. In a secluded meeting that held the weight of geopolitics, Kiir and Putin’s dialogue not only spanned the customary diplomatic matters but also ventured into the depths of political and security concerns within South Sudan.

Kenya's debt and economic struggles

The government has no option but to squeeze taxpayers further to raise revenues to meet budgetary obligations as the depreciating shilling worsens Kenya’s debt and economic struggles. This comes as the Kenyan shilling weakens against the US dollar and other major global currencies, pushing up the country’s spending on repayment. Kenya’s shilling has lost about 19 per cent of its value to the dollar year-to-date, exchanging at an average of KSh147.47 on Monday, September 25, 2023.
The weak currency has pushed the country’s public debt repayment bill by at least $4.67 billion (Sh690 billion) in the last eight months. Piling debt comes as the National Treasury went on a borrowing spree to bridge the budget deficit.

Increasing demand for oil and fuel threatens African nations’ economies. www.theexchange.africa

The energy crisis gripping South Africa is set to intensify as rising global oil prices, coupled with a heavy dependency on oil imports, threatens to trigger economic fallout in the country. The expected announcement of fuel price increases for October, will put further strain on the country’s economy.

According to data from the Central Energy Fund (CEF), the Automobile Association (AA) has issued a stark warning to South Africans about the impending hit on the economy starting October.