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Tuesday, 02 Jul 2019

The Nairobi US Embassy is now accepting both the new and the old currency

Insights Africa

Economic Outlook

Economic Outlook

  • The Central Bank of Kenya (CBK) announced that commercial banks' profit before tax for the first four months of 2019 increased by 15% to 56.8 BN KES (553.3 MM USD) compared to 49.4 BN KES (481.2 MM USD) on increased lending in the same period in 2018.
  • The Central Bank of Kenya (CBK) reported that the value of cash transacted through mobile phones in the first five months of 2019 increased by 186.11 BN KES (1.8 BN USD) compared to the same period last year, largely driven by higher e-commerce transactions.
  • Kenya and Ethiopia are still struggling to conduct strong trade relation between them despite pending a number of bilateral agreements. The barriers include long bureaucratic procedures, bans and sanctions.
  • Kenya made a total of 22.5 BN KES (219 MM USD) in interest payments on the five-year 76.4 BN KES (750 MM USD) Eurobond tranche that matured Monday, indicating the steep cost that taxpayers have to shoulder to finance external commercial loans.
  • China has asked Kenya and Uganda to work on the SGR joint railway respective financing modalities in order to receive funding for the project noting that China declined to fund the project because the two states' public debt levels are too high to accumulate more.
  • Ethiopia economy is projected to expand at 9.2% in 2019/2020, up from a growth rate of 7.7% in 2018/2019.
  • The French Development Agency (AFD) provides 100 MM EUR (3.2 BN ETB) to support economic reforms in Ethiopia. Among this financing, 85 MM EUR (2.7 BN ETB) is provided through a Public Policy concessional loan, and 15 MM EUR (492.6 MM ETB) is provided as a grant for the global technical assistance program.
  • Namibia international investment position improved in Q1-2019. This comes after the position registered a net liability of 11.8 BN NAD (837.87 MM USD) in Q1-2019, a lower position compared to 15 BN NAD (1.06 MM USD) in Q1-2018.
  • Rwanda started issuing the Rwanda East African Community (EAC) electronic passport. The new document is in compliance with the new EAC in an effort to boost faster border clearance as well as part of a wider regional strategy to enhance integration.
Political Events

Political Events

  • At least 11 people were killed in clashes with Sudan security forces during massdemonstrations demanding a transition to civilian rule following the coup in April. Tens of thousands of people flooded the streets of the capital, Khartoum, and other areas.
  • In Kenya, using a mobile phone to place a bet on an online gaming platform will lead to a sanction worth 2 MM KES (19,483 USD) or a maximum jail term of two years in the proposed gambling law that seeks to curb betting.
Stock Market

Stock Market

  • The telecommunications company Airtel Africa plans to list at least 500 million shares on the Nigeria Stock Exchange. The initial offer will comprise of between 14% and 18.9% of the firm's shares at a price of between 363 NGN (1.01 USD) and 545 NGN (1.26 USD).
  • Uganda Electricity Generation Company Limited (UEGCL) has plans to list on Uganda's stock exchange to access funds.
Companies Transactions

Companies Transactions

  • Olympia Capital Holdings has posted a 5.74 MM KES (55,918 USD) net profit for the year ended February 2019, registering an improvement compared to 3.48 MM KES (33,901 USD) loss posted in 2018/2019.
  • African Guarantee Fund (AGF) has set aside 17.1 BN KES (170 MM USD) to back Kenyan bank lending to small and medium-sized enterprises (SMEs) through a scheme that will insure the lenders against defaults. Some of the local lenders are NIC Bank and Ecobank.
  • Investors in the international debt market have significantly lowered their risk rating of Kenyan bonds, opening room for the Treasury to borrow more aggressively at friendlier price. Yields on Kenya outstanding Eurobonds have come down by around three percentage points in the past seven months due to the improved economic growth in 2018 and lower political risk.
  • Jubilee Holdings is set to start offering financial services in October 2019 after receiving a license from the Capital Markets Authority (CMA).
  • Payments firm Mastercard and KCB are set to roll out across Kenya a solution that enables small scale traders running kiosks to access stock on credit.
  • Thenew Rotary leadership of District 9211 in Tanzania and Uganda has enlisted attracting more members to Rotary among its top priorities. Its target in the next 10 years is to recruit over 35,000 members in Uganda.
  • Regional lender Equity Bank has set up a commercial representative office in Addis Ababa, Ethiopia, with plans to start operations in Africa fastest growing economy in July 2019.
  • Vodacom Group which trades in Zambia as Vodafone has announced the sale of its business unit operations in Zambia, Nigeria and Cote d'Ivoire to Andile Ngcaba's Synergy Communications.


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