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October 2017
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EDITO
Friday, 20 October 2017

G20 leaders in Hamburg will on Saturday hail their “Africa Compact” as a bold new initiative to boost investment and end poverty on the continent. Germany has billed the “trade, not aid” deal it developed during its G20 presidency as a quantum leap, supplementing traditional development aid with a new public-private partnerships to create jobs and improve infrastructure. For Europe it comes at a crucial time, Berlin says: throttling the flow of migrants to Europe. “We in Germany have a fundamental interest of good economic development in Africa and that’s why we are discussing a Marshall plan for Africa,” said Chancellor Angela Merkel, in a nod to the American plan that rebuilt postwar Europe.

The value of the EU's vegetable imports from third countries grew by 10%, totalling 1,312 million Euro in the first four months of 2017 compared to the same period last year, while fruit imports recorded a 9% growth, reaching €4,630 million, according to the latest data updated by the European Bureau of Statistics, Eurostat, processed by FEPEX.The main non-EU suppliers of vegetables in the EU in the period under review are still Morocco, Turkey and Egypt, with strong growth in all three cases. Imports of vegetables from Morocco up to April amounted to € 551.8 million, compared to € 470.6 million in the first four months of 2016, which is a 17% growth.

Tuesday, 18 July 2017

Nigerian Government Monday, deliberated with the European Union (EU) delegation on ways to facilitate trade and investment in Nigeria.The agreement was reached at the meeting between the Ambassador and Head of EU delegation to Nigeria and ECOWAS, Michell Arion, and the Nigerian Minister of Foreign Affairs, Geoffrey Onyeama. Also at the meeting, which held at the Ministry of Foreign Affairs, were other ministry officials as well as 20 representatives of EU member states.The Minister noted that the meeting was subsequent upon the communiqué signed last year between Nigeria and EU, which focused on security, corruption, prosperity, migration and human development.

For a developing country exporter, for example, of fresh bananas from the Philippines seeking market access to the EU, it is necessary to comply with at least seven categories of sustainability standards, from food safety controls to labelling standards, with each category of compliance carrying with it a range of production guidelines and documentation – a somewhat daunting prospect for a semi-literate farming producer in rural Mindanao. As such, one of the major contemporary challenges facing developing country firms, and especially small and medium-sized enterprises (SMEs) today, is the ever-increasing number of regulations and sustainability standards they are required to conform to if they are to integrate into global value chains (GVCs).

Aid for trade (AfT) is explicitly addressed in the Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs) under Goal 8: “Promotesustained, inclusive and sustainable economic growth, full and productive employment and decent work for all.” For AfT to deliver on the ambitions of this goal in Africa, along with the objectives contained in the African Union’s (AU) long-term development vision and action plan, Agenda 2063, it is important to ensure that it is well-targeted and aligned with the continent’s strategic priority of structural transformation.

Thursday, 13 July 2017

Olusegun Awolowo, Executive Director. Nigerian Export Promotion Council, NEPC, says the Federal Government has developed "Conduits of Excellence (CoE)" to ensure consistent and stringent quality management for all exportable products. Mr. Awolowo told the News Agency of Nigeria in Abuja on Sunday that the Federal Government had also set up a committee for the realisation of the objective. According to him, the committee will work under the technical guidance of United Nations Industrial Development Organisation, UNIDO. He also said the committee would also develop the code of practice and Standard Operating Procedure, SOP, for production and processing of selected products.

Globalisation and technological change have contributed significantly to driving economic growth and raising living standards across the globe. However, globalisation has created challenges and its benefits have not been shared widely enough. By bringing together developed and emerging market economies, the G20 is determined to shape globalisation to benefit all people. Most importantly, we need to better enable our people to seize its opportunities. We are resolved to tackle common challenges to the global community, including terrorism, displacement, poverty, hunger and health threats, job creation, climate change, energy security, and inequality including gender inequality, as a basis for sustainable development and stability.

The initiative is the first international support for financial services in the country in many years. The European Investment Bank is the world’s largest international public bank, owned directly by the 28 European Union member states. “New investment is essential to enable small business across Ethiopia to expand, create jobs and harness new business opportunities,”said Pim van Ballekom, European Investment Bank Vice President. “Over the last 40 years the European Investment Bank has supported crucial energy, water, communications and private enterprise across Ethiopia and our engagement in the country has been transformed since opening a permanent presence in Addis two years ago.

Dutch banking giant Rabobank, a leading food and agribusiness financier, has joined the list of Kenya’s Equity Bank Group shareholders. Rabobank will jointly with the Netherlands Development Finance Company, a government-backed institution also known by its Dutch acronym FMO and Norfund, own an 11.99 per cent stake in Equity Holdings. The shareholding in Equity Holdings is held through Arise, an investment company focused on the banking sector launched early this year.Arise is in the process of acquiring minority stakes in both NMB (National Microfinance Bank PLC (NMB) a commercial bank in Tanzania) and Equity Bank.

Wednesday, 12 July 2017

The costs of ingredients of poultry feed highly depend on the country’s production. As a result these costs highly determine the competitive power of the national poultry chains in East Africa. This is concluded in a study conducted by WLR in collaboration with the Netherlands Africa Business Council (NABC). The study shows how poultry chains in Kenya, Uganda, Rwanda and Tanzania increasingly depend on developments in their neighbouring countries. The results of the project ‘Poultry Development in Africa, a regional perspective’ have been presented in the Africa Event of the Dutch Poultry Centre. Feed prices are lowest in the countries that are able to locally produce the main feed ingredients (mainly maize).