Video guest: Josephine Mwangi

October 2017
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EDITO
Wednesday, 18 October 2017

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.

Kenya has launched a fresh push for the conclusion of long-pending trade deal between the European Union and the East African Community (EAC) amid risks of losing preferential access for its products to the main European market. Kenya and Rwanda signed the deal in 2016, but it needs approval from all members of the East African Community bloc - which also includes Burundi and Uganda - to take effect.

Thursday, 12 October 2017

Ministers of Trade from the Member States of the West African Economic and Monetary Union (WAEMU) met at the end of September 2017 in Cotonou in Benin, under the initiative of the WAEMU Commission, for their annual meeting to discuss the evolution of the main dossiers relating to the implementation of the Union’s trade policy. In their final declaration, the Trade Ministers of the Member States of the West African Economic and Monetary Union (WAEMU) called on the three countries still to sign to do so in order to preserve the gains of integration in West Africa. The latter took note of the efforts made by the Commissions of ECOWAS and WAEMU to ensure that all the States sign the EPA.

The Rencontres Africa 2017 event, taking place in Abidjan since Monday 02 October, has provided an opportunity to strengthen the collaboration between Ivorian employers represented by the General Confederation of Enterprises of Côte d'Ivoire (Confédération générale des entreprises de Côte d’Ivoire – CGECI) and the French Public Investment Bank (Banque Publique d’Investissements Français – Bpifrance). An agreement was signed between the two entities on the sidelines of the forum, which is taking place for the first time in Africa.

Thirteen companies from Netherlands have announced their plan to attend the Poultry Africa 2017 expo and leadership conference that will be held in Kigali from October 4th. Their mission is organized by the Netherlands-African Business Council (NABC), the leading network of Dutch companies that do business with Africa, and has 350 members. A majority of them is active in the agricultural sector. During the conference, these companies will learn and build strong partnership with Rwandans in poultry sector.

Up to 250 high-powered delegates will attend the fourth edition of the South Africa-Italy Summit/Indaba, which will be held from 24 to 25 October 2017 at the Hyatt Regency Hotel in Rosebank, Johannesburg. The summit is organised by The European House – Ambrosetti Group (TEH-A), a leading Italian management consulting firm. The company was named for the fourth consecutive year as the no. 1 private think tank in Italy, ranking in the European top ten. It was ranked in the World top one-hundred most-esteemed independents, out of 6,846 Think Tanks globally, in the University of Pennsylvania 2016 Global Go To Think Tank Index Report. The summit was inspired by the memorandum of understanding (MoU) signed by the governments of South Africa and Italy at the “Regions of Africa Europe Forum” in Taormina in 2012

Four hundred and twenty-one small businesses received financial and logistical support from the United Kingdom’s Department for International Development (DFID) from 2014 to 2017 to develop and implement their business ideas, the Country Director of DFID, Mr Philip Smith, has said. The support, he said, had resulted in over 250 per cent revenue growth of such businesses that had in turn created 1,203 jobs in the country.

The very last agricultural quota system in place, managing sugar production in the EU, were scrapped on 30 September, after nearly 50 years, part of a major CAP reform and restructuring process. The sugar quota system was introduced with the first Common Agricultural Policy rules on sugar in 1968, along with a support price for producers set at a level significantly above the world market price. The decision to end the quota system for sugar was taken by EU Member States in 2006. The end of the quota system follows significant reform of the sector from The very last agricultural quota system in place, managing sugar production in the European Union, were scrapped on 30 September 2017, after nearly 50 years

Monday, 09 October 2017

The European Union plans to invest 27 billion CFA francs in the development of transport and the upkeep of the national road transport network. This was the information given by the EU ambassador to Côte d’Ivoire, Jean-François Valette, on 21 September 2017, during a ceremony for grants given to the Ministries of Transport and Economic Infrastructure. The ceremony took place at the headquarters of the Office for Road Safety (Oser) in Marcory. The ambassador said the EU intended to reinforce its support for the Ivorian government in the development of transport and the road network.