The Week That Was -18th September 2020

21 Sep 2020

ABiQ presents a weekly recap of major activities that took place in Africa in the last 7 days. You can watch the video here

Central Africa

  • During a joint meeting between the Angola government and the EU, the latter announced as an act of solidarity, it will increase their COVID-19 Response By €20 million in support of economic restructuring.
  • On September 16th, the IMF approved $1 billion as an immediate disbursement to Angola and also increased the overall access to funds by an additional $765 million.
  • The Cameroon government, in a joint venture with the US’ Hydromine, aims to build a Hydro-electric dam in the Sanaga River.  The project is called “Grand Eweng” and will cost an estimated $3 billion.  The power plant will initially produce 810 MW and will be increased to over 1,000 MW at a later stage.

Eastern Africa

  • Tanzania, Rwanda, and Uganda have agreed to implement a World Bank-funded financial project which allows the stock markets in these countries to be integrated before the end of 2020.
  • BGI Health Ethiopia, a joint venture company with China, has opened a facility that produces COVID-19 test kits.  It also stated its researchers are working on a vaccine.
  • The World Bank has approved an $80 million grant from the International Development Association to improve market access for smallholder farmers in Ethiopia.
  • A $58 million road upgrade project in Nairobi’s low-income neighborhoods will kick off this week.  The project will be managed by the Kenya Roads Authority.  The project will improve road surfaces stretching more than 400 kilometers.
  • Huawei has signed a partnership agreement with the Kenyan Bankers Association to deploy Huawei’s technology to further improve financial and banking infrastructure.
  • Rwanda’s Bank of Kigali and I&M Bank will disburse $6 million and $12 million respectively to more than 600 small and medium enterprises affected by the COVID-19 pandemic.
  • After Uganda’s approval last week of the Host Government Agreement for Total’s East African Crude Oil Export pipeline, Tanzanian authorities now have a month to finalise and sign their respective Host Government Agreement (HGA).
  • Kenyan airlines are now able to resume flights to Tanzania after the COVID-19 related ban was lifted.
  • Uganda received a grant of $60 million and a credit of $240 million from the World Bank to boost the delivery of social infrastructure.
  • The World Bank has also approved $130 Million to improve road infrastructure in Uganda’s West-Nile region through finance from the International Development Association.
  • Canada’s First Quantum Minerals is evaluating options to almost double capacity at Zambia’s Kansanshi mine by adding 25 million tons per annum to the existing capacity of 27 million tons per annum. 
  • Air Zimbabwe has announced that it resumed domestic flights on the 23rd of September and will resume international flights on the 3rd of October.

Northern Africa

  • Eastern Libyan will start to export oil from the country’s ports after an eight-month blockade was lifted.
  • Algeria announced plans to export US$ 5 billion of locally produced drugs by 2025
  • Egypt has announced that it will build two highways across the pyramids plateau outside Cairo.

Southern Africa

  • In order to fund its budget deficit and economic stimulus program, Botswana’s parliament has approved a request to double its domestic borrowing program to $2.6 billion.
  • South Africa’s ministry of finance stated that it expects the country’s economy to contract by more than 7% during the 2020 fiscal year.
  • The country also hopes rising metal commodity prices will bring much-needed activity to the declining mining industry and help counter the economic crisis brought on by the COVID-19 lockdown.
  • President Ramaposa of South Africa announced that international travel will resume on the 1st of October to selected countries.
  • South Africa’s Reserve Bank has decided to keep the interest rate unchanged.

Western Africa

  • President Barrow of The Gambia announced plans to build eight new treatment centers and refurbish existing isolation centers across the country.
  • Ghana’s statistics office announced that the country’s economy is set to contract 3.2 percent for the first time in almost forty years as a result of the COVID-19 pandemic.
  • Nigeria will need to spend $4bn over the next 5 years to implement broadband across the country.  The ministry of communications and the digital economy stated that they plan to provide 4G access to 90 percent of the population by 2025.
  • Chevron Nigeria said it invested $1.45 billion in sourcing materials and resources from local Nigerian suppliers during 2019.

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