1Grounding One of Africa’s Biggest Airlines
South Africa Airways (SAA) has lost money every year since 2011, and survives with government support. “It’s loss-making, we are unlikely to sort out the situation, so my view would be close it down,” said the country’s new finance minister at an investor conference in the US.
2Sudan’s Political Blunders Hit the Pocket
Sudan has been short of hard currency for years due to sanctions and embargoes. The crisis led to Sudanese President Omar al-Bashir dissolving the government. After dollar rates on Sudan’s parallel forex market began to rise rapidly in 2010, the Central Bank of Sudan (CBoS) announced that the lack of hard currency, required for importing basic commodities such as wheat or medicines, was becoming acute.
SOURCES: African Business Magazine
3Africa at the G20
Working with the World Bank, International Monetary Fund and the African Development Bank, the G20 hopes to create in African countries the conditions needed to attract private investment, including economic stability, anti-corruption systems and financing. The goal of the program is to bring together “reform-minded” African governments to coordinate country-specific plans in a continent that Merkel said has been too frequently overlooked.
SOURCES: Washington Post
4Electricity Boost for Mali as New Power Station Opens
The plant is expected to increase Mali’s effective base load electricity capacity by 25%, providing up to 4.5 million people with improved access to power and paving the way for new renewable energy facilities.
5South African Entrepreneur’s Solution for a Grave Concern
The lack of burial spaces is leading entrepreneurs to come up with out-of-the-box alternatives such as bio-burials, virtual graves and space disposal. A South African startup, Biotree.earth, produces biodegradable urns made out of natural plant fibers and materials that aid in fertilizing soil and neutralizing the pH levels of ashes.
SOURCES: Forbes Africa
6The Future of Nigeria’s Oil Industry
By early next year, the largest offshore production vessel ever delivered to Nigeria will start pumping crude from a deposit deep beneath the seabed, boosting the West African country’s oil output by about 10 percent. The project, viewed as the most ambitious in Nigeria’s history, could help to push production to a record by 2022.
7Green Energy: a Relatively New Market in Somalia
With a company backed by his own funds, Guled Wiliq along with friends and family has brought electricity to 1,000 people so far, through installing 70 kilowatts of solar panels. Digital technologies frequently collide with rural realities. Most of Wiliq’s customers pay in installments, as they can’t afford solar panels outright. Sometimes he has to take a mix of money and goats to get a deal done; given the high upfront costs, Wiliq’s solar home system has just six customers. Power OffGrid recently acquired a smaller solar company, Wiliq says, with $60,000 in sales.
8African Island Launches Novel Financing Instrument
The Republic of Seychelles has launched the world’s first sovereign blue bond — a financial instrument designed to support sustainable marine and fisheries projects. Proceeds from the bond will support the expansion of marine protected areas‚ improved governance of priority fisheries and the development of the Seychelles’ blue economy.
SOURCES: Business Day Live
9Building Better Roads in African Countries
New roads in Ethiopia and across sub-Saharan Africa often change the landscape, bringing dust, flooding and erosion. The impact is felt most by rural communities. Under a project rolled out in Ethiopia as well as nine other countries including Bangladesh, roads are being built using innovative designs and drainage structures to collect water caused by flooding. This has solved an infrastructural issue while conserving water that can be used for crops and to feed livestock.
SOURCES: Quartz Africa
10Flights from Africa to Across the Globe are Expanding
Passengers on Kenya Airways’ Boeing 787-8 Dreamliner took a historic 15-hour flight from Nairobi’s Jomo Kenyatta International Airport to New York. The new route aims to keep the national carrier competitive against a number of African airlines that already provide direct flights to the US from the continent including Egypt Air and South African Airways. The move is part of wider expansion plans by African airlines. Ethiopian Airlines launched new routes from Addis Ababa to Jakarta, Indonesia, Geneva, Switzerland, and Chicago this year, while Air Tanzania also announced new direct flights to Uganda and Burundi.