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EDITO
Wednesday, 18 October 2017

The new European Union Head of delegation to Uganda Attilio Pacifici has promised to focus on strategies for strengthening the Private Sector in Uganda as a catalyst for development. Amb Pacifici was yesterday presenting working copies of his credentials to minister of foreign affairs Sam Kutesa at the Ministry in Kampala. Pacifici said he was looking forward to working with the Government of Uganda to further strengthen relations with the European Union. He replaces Amb. Kristian Schmidt whose tenure ended in July 2017.

Monday, 16 October 2017

Europe’s second largest port, Antwerp in Belgium, maintains special links with the African continent, thanks to the variety of goods it handles and the routes it serves. Antwerp is the story of a river port, which managed to venture forth from the estuary of the River Scheldt and reach the furthest points of the earth. Its saga has lasted more than eight centuries, marching to the beat of globalisation. While it took the Flemish port seven hundred years to reach 100 million tonnes of annual traffic, it only took another twenty-five to double that volume. With 214 million tonnes handled in 2016, it is now one of the world’s twenty busiest ports, between the giants of Asia and still in the immovable shadow of Rotterdam. But unlike its eternal rival, Antwerp does not ride on the black gold of the oil trade.

The Spanish engineering and consulting firm Incatema Consulting has obtained the green light from the Angolan government for an agropastoral project in the Samba Caju municipality in Cuanza Norte province. The news was announced by the Angolan news agency (Angop). With an overall cost of $73 million, the initiative aims to develop the region’s agricultural potential in line with the government’s objective of promoting projects that improve agricultural production and processing. According to Angop, the Angolan Finance Ministry is expected to support the Spanish company by creating the necessary conditions for the project to be carried out.

For the first time in ten years, famine is no longer in retreat across the world, according to the UN Food and Agriculture Organisation (FAO). This disaster can in part by explained by climate change and armed conflicts. But it is also the result of free trade agreements, which impose a lifting of cross-border restrictions that is destabilising for local agriculture. The winds of free trade are blowing across the African continent. On the one hand, the European Union is stepping up its pressure on African countries to finalise the signature of Economic Partnership Agreements (EPAs), and to end non-reciprocal trade preferences: in order to retain the exemption from tariffs on their exports to Europe, Africans will have to remove 80% of those applying to imports from the Single Market.

The French ambassador to Côte d'Ivoire, Gilles Huberson, on Tuesday called on French companies to meet the Africa challenge during the closing ceremony of the first stage of Rencontres Africa 2017, an economic event aimed at strengthening the partnership between Africa and France. Ambassador Huberson welcomed the success of the first stage of Rencontres Africa, which bore fruit with the exceptional participation of French companies.