Africa Briefs

07 March 2018 | Ekonomie
SA to reform state firms after graft

South Africa will announce details of wide-ranging reforms at state-owned firms within four weeks, the public enterprises minister said yesterday, as government seeks to return credibility to companies hobbled by graft and mismanagement.

The control board members have over procurement at state companies, one of the main processes alleged to have been abused by officials in the past, will be changed within two to three months, Pravin Gordhan told a union meeting.

He said new board members will be appointed to state firms in need of reform within two to three months, without naming the companies.

Gordhan, a popular figure with investors, was appointed by President Cyril Ramaphosa in a cabinet reshuffle last week with the mandate to clean up state firms that have become a burden on government finances and a focus of ratings agencies.

"We’re on a good wave of change in South Africa," Gordhan told union members and reporters in Pretoria. – Nampa/Reuters

Rwanda's economy to grow 6.5%

Good climate conditions are expected to help Rwanda's economy grow 6.5 percent this year, up from a projected 5.2 percent last year, the central bank governor said yesterday.

At least 70% of Rwandans are farmers, the national statistics body says, growing crops like maize and vegetables for local use and tea and coffee for export.

The central bank said inflation is expected to be around 5% in 2018, slightly up from 4.9% last year.

Ivory Coast announces infrastructure plan

The West African state of Ivory Coast on Monday said it was earmarking 3 760 billion CFA francs (US$7.07 billion) in infrastructure spending over the next five years, especially in transport.

The announcement was made by the minister for economic infrastructure, Amede Koffi Kouakou, at ceremonies to launch a business fair to be held in the economic capital Abidjan in November.

Chief areas of investment include a bridge in Abidjan linking the district of Yopougon to the business centre of Plateau, and completing half of some 650 kilometres of highway that Ivory Coast has to build under a scheme linking Abidjan to the capital of Burkina Faso, Ouagadougou.

Ivory Coast is considered a star performer among West African economies. In 2017, its gross domestic product (GDP) expanded by 7.6%. – Nampa/AFP

IMF confident Ghana will meet requirements

The International Monetary Fund is confident Ghana will implement outstanding measures needed for a successful review of its US$918 million aid programme next month, the Fund's Ghana chief said on Monday.

The major commodities exporter is in the final year of the programme, signed in April 2015 to restore stability to an economy dogged by deficits, public debt and low growth with inflation consistently above target.

A confidential document seen by Reuters on Friday said the IMF wants Ghana to adopt new measures to boost revenues, slow the pace of borrowing and outline plans to clean up the financial sector.

Finance Minister Ken Ofori-Atta said last week the government planned to issue up to US$2 billion of sovereign issuance by June to pay down debt that hit 68.7% of GDP last November and help finance the 2018 budget. - Nampa/Reuters

Egypt's new oil refinery to begin test run

A new oil refinery near Cairo which has been delayed by financing problems will begin a test run in the third quarter of 2018, its managing director said on Monday.

The refinery, called Egyptian Refining Co (ERC), is a joint venture between state-controlled Egyptian General Petroleum Corporation (EGPC) and Arab Refining Company and will have the capacity to produce 4.7 million tonnes of refined products per year when fully operational.

It is expected to start actual operations by the end of 2018 or early 2019, managing director Mohamed Saad said at a news conference.

Its output will be sold to EGPC and used domestically under a 25-year agreement, covering 30-50% of Egypt's imports of petroleum products and reducing Egypt's dependence on oil product imports. – Nampa/Reuters

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