- East African nations have launched a plan to integrate their economies within five years. The East African Community (EAC), the inter-governmental organization made up of Burundi, Kenya, Rwanda, South Sudan, Tanzania, and Uganda, wants to form a union that models the Economic Community of West African States (ECOWAS) or the European Union (EU).
- Uganda public debt surged 5% in 2019/2020 as the east African country soaked up new credit to help deal with the economic impact of Covid-19. The new loans mostly came from international lenders including the World Bank and the International Monetary Fund (IMF). As of the end of June 2020, Uganda public debt was 56.5 TR UGX (15.33 BN USD).
- In Zimbabwe, the Minister of finance reported that the economy would not be as severely impacted by the Covid-19 pandemic as initially feared and foreign currency inflows had shown resilience. The country is facing an inflation’s increase, shortages of drugs in hospitals and strikes by public workers before the novel coronavirus arrived in March.
- The Covid-19 pandemic, and measures implemented in Ethiopia to slow its spread, have significantly constrained many poor households’ access to cash income. Many poor households are gradually re-engaging in income-generating activities despite continued movement restrictions; however, the broader economic slowdown has placed limits on their capacity to earn income.
- The World Bank approved 80 MM USD grant from the International Development Association (IDA) to support the government of Ethiopia boost agricultural productivity and enhance market access for smallholder farmers.
- Zimbabwe has been singled out as one of the countries with the lowest daily mobile money transaction limits in Africa, a development seen as hindering the growth of the mobile money sector and hampering financial inclusion.
- In Namibia, while there is a cumulative 75% reduction in the repo rate since the beginning of 2020, there has been no significant increase in uptake of credit. This is according to the latest private sector credit extension report by the Bank of Namibia which shows that there is an increase of 0.76% amounted to 774.1 MM NAD (46.82 MM USD) in credit extended to the private sector by in August 2020.
- Americans Harvey Alter and Charles Rice together with Briton Michael Houghton won the Nobel Medicine Prize yesterday for the discovery of the Hepatitis C virus. The three were honored for their "decisive contribution to the fight against blood-borne hepatitis, a major global health problem that causes cirrhosis and liver cancer in people around the world.
- Uganda and Tanzania are locked in a dispute over road user fees for trucks headed to the Dar es Salaam port, with Kampala threatening to retaliate against “unfair” charges imposed on its transporters that are higher than those applicable to Rwandan shippers.
- Dangote Sugar refinery Plc (DSR) a major subsidiary of the Dangote Group, has disclosed that it has listed 146,878,241 additional ordinary shares on the Nigerian Stock Exchange (NSE), as a result of the recent merger with Savannah Sugar Company Limited. With the listing of these additional shares, the total issued shares of Dangote Sugar Refinery Plc has now increased to 12,146,878,241 ordinary shares of 50 kobo each.
- Three East African countries have joined forces to implement a World Bank-funded financial project that aims to connect regional stock markets electronically. This means they can operate as a single market with a view of reducing the cost and time of trading in shares of companies listed on markets across the borders. These countries are Uganda, Rwanda and Tanzania.
Note: Weekly values are calculated on Friday of each week.
- London-based Atlas Mara Limited will sell 100% stake in its Mozambican banking subsidiary to Nigeria Access Bank after Equity Group walked out of the deal in June. Equity had signed an agreement with Atlas Mara to buy 62% of the share capital of Rwanda Banque Populaire du Rwanda and 100% of African Banking Corporation of Zambia, African Banking Corporation Tanzania and African Banking Corporation Mozambique.
- MTN Nigeria shareholders have gained 58 BN NGN (2.57 BN USD) since the first trading session in April 2020. This was uncovered by calculating the difference in the telecommunication giant’s market capitalization of 1.832 TR NGN (4.78 BN USD) at the open of trade, for the first trading session in the month of April 2020, and the market capitalization of 2.646 TR NGN (6.91 BN USD) at the close of trade in the first trading session in the month of October.
- The World Business Angels Investment Forum recently announced African Development Bank as its newest Board Member, a position that will see the Bank represent Africa's early-stage equity markets, entrepreneurship and startup ecosystems, small and medium enterprises and high-growth businesses, angel investors, and private equity funds.
- Airtel Africa has partnered with Mastercard and Samsung to finance customers’ purchase of devices across Kenya and 13 markets in monthly installments. The service which will first be available in Uganda from October pending regulatory approval, will then be rolled out to other markets that include Tanzania, Rwanda, Kenya, Nigeria, DRC, Gabon, Malawi, Zambia and Madagascar.
- Facebook investments in infrastructure and connectivity across Africa are expected to be around 57 BN USD in economic benefits over the next five years. Noting that Facebook has invested in infrastructure and partnerships to address the barriers to connectivity, such as the lack of availability in infrastructure, affordability, relevance and readiness to get online.
- The World Business Angels Investment Forum announced the African Development Bank (AfDB) as its newest Board Member. In this capacity the Bank will represent Africa’s early-stage equity markets, entrepreneurship and startup ecosystems, small and medium enterprises and high-growth businesses, angel investors, and private equity funds.
- Despite the uncertainties related to the Covid-19 pandemic, Ethiopia Industrial Parks Development Corporation (IPDC) has planned to generate 400 MM USD from foreign trade this fiscal by involving 36 domestic investors in the parks and generating 45,000 jobs. Several textile and garment companies are also part of the IPDC industrial parks.