- Economic disruption caused by the Covid-19 pandemic has pushed East Africa’s growth projection for 2020 down to 2%, a rate that outstrips other African regions, and is forecast to rebound to 3.7% in 2021. The projection is under the baseline scenario that assumes the virus is contained by Q3-2020.
- Kenya credit market will come under severe pressure as the Covid-19 pandemic impacts the Kenyan economy, with Gross Domestic Product (GDP) expected to slow between 5% to 5.5%, down from the previously forecasted 5.9%. The Central Bank of Kenya (CBK) in June 2020 revealed that the ratio of non-performing loans stood at 13.1%, the highest since August 2007 when it stood at 14.41%.
- The Organization of the Petroleum Exporting Countries (OPEC) stated that Nigeria crude export earnings in the five-year period from 2015 to 2019 reached 06 BN USD. OPEC detailed Nigeria half-a-decade oil export revenue performance in its 2020 Annual Statistical Bulletin issued last Monday, noting a 20.8% decrease from 54.51 BN USD in 2018 to 45.11 BN USD in 2019.
- The Central Bank of Nigeria (CBN) directed banks to stop processing new foreign exchange documents (Form M) for maize imports. In a circular to commercial banks, the apex bank said that it wanted to support the increase in local production, stimulate the economy and safeguard rural livelihoods lost as a result of the Covid-19 pandemic.
- Namibia registered a deficit on the current account during Q1-2020, mainly due to deterioration in the merchandise trade balance. The current account deficit reached 432 MM NAD (25.3 MM USD) in Q1-2020 compared to a surplus of 312 MM NAD (18.27 MM USD) in Q1-2019, according to the Bank of Namibia's (BoN).
- In Namibia, the Ministry of Mines and Energy is informing the public that it will recommence to accept/receive new applications for licenses issued under the Diamond Act with effect from the date of the notice which is 6th of July.
- According to the World Bank, Ugandan economic growth is expected to decrease to 4% in 2020 compared to 5.6% in 2019 as the coronavirus crisis hits the east African economy ahead of presidential elections set for 2021.
- According to the National Institute of Statistics for Rwanda (NISR), the informal economy accounts for at least 50% of economic activity in the retail sector. Despite their importance to local communities, informal retail shops routinely run out of products, face difficulty receiving goods, and lack access to basic financial services. With the restrictions on movement, Covid-19 has worsened these issues, creating major shortages for not only shop owners, but also the communities who rely on them.
- Sudan declared a state of emergency in part of the conflict-ridden western region of Darfur after violence and unrest in two towns. The African Union-United Nations Mission in Darfur (UNAMID) had sent a team to Kutum town in North Darfur state following the reported burning of a police station and cars by unidentified protesters.
- The federal Nigerian government has released guidelines ahead of the resumption of schools at every level in the country. The guidelines for the safe reopening of schools and learning facilities after the Covid-19 pandemic outlined actions, measures, and requirements needed for resumption.
- The Kenyan shilling decreased against the dollar while the Nairobi Securities Exchange (NSE) lost 110 BN KES (93.3 MM USD) in the week Kenya announced a phased reopening of the country from Covid-19 lockdown to stimulate the economy. The value of all the stocks on the Nairobi bourse hit a three-month low of 02 TR KES (18.85 BN USD) on Friday compared to 2.13 TR KES (19.8 BN USD) on July 3.
- Nigerian equities reopened last Monday with considerable sell pressure on leading stocks in the main sectors of banking, oil and gas and telecommunications, pushing the overall market position to a net loss of 56 BN NGN (7 MM USD). Average return at the Nigerian Stock Exchange (NSE) stood at -0.44%, largely due to losses suffered by large-cap stocks, such as Nigeria’s most capitalized stock, MTN Communications Nigeria; largest financial stock, Guaranty Trust Bank (GTBank); second largest financial institution, Zenith Bank and leading downstream oil and gas stock, 11 Plc, formerly Mobil Oil Nigeria.
Note: Weekly values are calculated on Friday of each week.
- WhatsApp which is a communication app used only for sending messages and sharing funny videos, but the company has added a new feature to it known as WhatsApp Pay. WhatsApp Pay is an in-chat payment feature that allows users to make transactions via WhatsApp to their contact list. It is a UPI (Unified Payments Interface)-based payment service that allows you to both send and receive money.
- NBC Tanzania bank has been nominated in the prestigious African Banker awards 2020 which celebrates excellence in banking and finance sector in the continent. NBC Tanzania is the only contester from Tanzania in 2020’s awards competing with Bank of Industry, Sterling Bank both from Nigeria, Bank of Misr (Egypt) and Ecobank in the category. The category attests for the excellence in supporting and transforming SMEs in the continent.
- Co-op Bank has reduced its indirect ownership in CIC Insurance to 8% after selling shares to a group of saccos for a total of 106.6 MM KES (995,145 USD). The lender has been a long-term investor in CIC through the investment holding company Co-op Insurance Society Limited which has a 74.3% stake in the insurer.
- A group of investors backed by the African Development Bank (AfDB) has announced plans to set up a 5 BN KES (70 MM USD) cold storage facility at Ruiru’s Tatu City development. AfDB which invested 2.5 BN KES (23.3 MM USD) in the 25 BN KES (233.3 MM USD) Africa-focused fund (ARCH) revealed the cold storage facility is a flagship project to be replicated in Ethiopia, Kenya, Rwanda, Tanzania, and Uganda, totaling 10 facilities worth 21.4 BN KES (199.7 MM USD).
- Several vehicles contracted by mobile taxi hailing firm Uber are up for sale after the owners failed to service bank loans. Stanbic Bank has put on auction 13 Suzuki Altos to recover loans advanced to the owners. Stanbic Bank recovery officer Lillian Wangechi confirmed that the vehicles belonged to Uber drivers who were unable to service their loans.
- Sanlam Kenya plans to leverage on information technology-based solutions to sustain its business growth as part of its post-Covid-19 recovery strategy. The NSE listed non-bank financial services provider, has been on a sustained recovery path in the last two years but acknowledges that business slowdown arising from Covid-19 ripple effects may impact its 2020 performance.
- Cold Solutions Kenya Limited, warehouse and logistics service provider, has announced plans to invest 5 BN KES (70 MM USD) in the construction of a state-of-the-art temperature-controlled cold storage warehouses. The facilities will be located in Nairobi and Mombasa.
- IFC, a member of the World Bank Group, announced a 25 MM EUR, one-year senior loan to NSIA Banque Côte d’Ivoire (NSIA), allowing the bank to extend new trade-related or working capital loans to companies whose cash flows have been disrupted by the Covid-19 pandemic.