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Newsletter 507

Video guest: Josephine Mwangi

August 2019
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Saturday, 17 August 2019

The last few months have seen some significant developments for African trade and integration. These advances come at a crucial time for African countries, which have been particularly hard hit by the slump in commodity prices, China’s economic downturn, and higher external borrowing costs. This has resulted in slower GDP growth than expected, currency fluctuations and reduced investment – particularly in resource-rich countries. New dynamics are emerging as a result of two major developments: first, a set of agreements between regional African blocs and the European Union, as well as between African countries themselves

The European Parliament’s development committee has approved a new report about the future of EU relations with African, Caribbean and Pacific (ACP) states in view of the soon-to-expire Cotonou Agreement. Set to expire in 2020, renegotiations will soon be underway. According to the European Parliament rapporteur and author of the report, Norbert Neuser, who is also the development coordinator for the Socialists & Democrats, a broad majority of the MEPs in the committee backed continued cooperation. “Despite all the difficulties faced, this approach is bearing fruit today and shell be legally binding,” he said.

The European Investment Bank (EIB) has opened a credit line of 30 million euros for Mozambican companies, said the Millennium bim bank in a statement issued on Monday in Maputo. The statement said the credit line would finance 50% of the total cost of each business project submitted by micro, small and medium-sized companies in the public and private sector. “The aim of this programme is to finance 50% of the total cost of each eligible project, from any sector of activity,” said the statement.

Kenya and Rwanda have signed the Economic Partnership Agreement (EPA) with the European Union even as two of its EAC partners say the deal does not auger well for the region's economies. Rwanda's Ambassador to Belgium Olivier Nduhungirehe posted pictures of Rwandan Trade minister Francois Kanimba and his Kenyan counterpart Adan Mohamed signing the agreements in Brussels Thursday on his Twitter account. "#Kenya & #Rwanda, who signed the #EPA with the EU this morning, are the firsts @jumuiya partner states to sign," he said in the tweet.

Friday, 02 September 2016

The Ambassador of the EU earlier this week announced that the EU will be donating an amount of US$20 million to assist various projects including drought relief, to help northern farmers with veterinary services, land development, water supply and NGO's. The Ambassador noted "The idea of this project is to increase the market price of cattle by 17% over five years. The only way this can be done is to decrease the number of cattle in the northern areas hoping that it will also prevent over-grazing and promote the quality of meat. The project will be initiated in October this year and different farmers and stakeholders will still be engaged" the Ambassador added.