Video guest: Josephine Mwangi

November 2017
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EDITO
Saturday, 18 November 2017

Youth employment should be at the centre of any strategy to face economic and demographic challenges in Africa, the Director-General of the UN Food and Agriculture Organization José Graziano da Silva told a joint African Union-European Union meeting, hosted at FAO headquarters in Rome. In 2014 alone, about 11 million young Africans entered the labour market. But many see few opportunities in the agriculture sector and are constrained by a lack of skills, low wages, and limited access to land and financial services. Combined, this makes them more prone to migrate from rural areas. "Fostering sustainable agriculture and rural development is essential to absorb these millions of youth looking for a job," Graziano da Silva said.

Zambia signed trade contracts worth US $100 million with grain traders from eastern Africa on Thursday for the export of 382,640 metric tonnes white maize, soyabeans and other grains. The deals were sealed in Lusaka during a regional Trade Facilitation Forum organised by the Eastern Africa Grain Council (EAGC) in collaboration with Zambia Commodity Exchange (ZAMACE), with support of USAID’s East Africa Trade and Investment Hub and USAID’s Southern Africa Trade and Investment Hub. The forum brought together over 195 sellers and buyers of maize, soya beans, common beans, millet and other grain commodities from, Burundi, Malawi, South Africa, Kenya, Uganda, Rwanda, Zambia and Zimbabwe.

Tuesday, 04 July 2017

Kenyan food is set to be safer than ever after the European Union made available state-of-the art equipment that will enable national food control authorities to test the quality and safety of a wide range of food products. The food testing laboratory equipment was launched by The Cabinet Secretary for Industry, Trade and Co-operatives, Adan Mohamed and the EU Ambassador, Stefano Dejak at the Kenya Bureau of Standards headquarters. CS Mohamed said the equipment now available in laboratories at the Kenya Plant Health Inspectorate Service (KEPHIS), the Directorate of Veterinary Services (DVS) and the Kenya Bureau of Standards (KEBS), gives the institutions the necessary tools to enforce and certify compliance with consumer food safety requirements.

Government and Unilever today announced a Joint Vision to transform the Twifo Oil Palm Plantation (TOPP) into a state-of-the-art sustainable palm oil plantation. Vice President, Dr Mahamudu Bawumia and Unilever Global CEO, Paul Polman, agreed on a Joint Vision, outlining their support for the development of a sustainable palm oil industry in Ghana. Under this Joint Vision, Unilever and the Government of Ghana will work together to develop the plantation, support smallholder farmers, and help ensure a positive impact on the local economy.Dr Bawumia commended Unilever for the support it has offered the Ghanaian economy over the years through its continuous presence and operations in Ghana.

Efforts by the federal government to diversify the economy is beginning to yield results, as the federal government is set to export 72 metric tonnes of yam to Europe and the United States today. In a major diversification breakthrough, the minister Of Agriculture, Audu Ogbeh, announced yesterday that the Federal Executive Council (FEC) has approved the exportation of yams to the United States and United Kingdom. Ogbeh disclosed this to State House correspondents after the weekly FEC meeting presided over by Acting President Yemi Osinbajo at the presidential villa, Abuja. The minister was joined at the FEC briefing by his science and technology as well as Health counterparts, Ogbonaya Onu and Isaac Adewole respectively, and Special adviser to the president on media and publicity, Mr. Femi Adesina.

Farmers are set to benefit from the Africa Improved Foods (AIF), a food processing factory that was unveiled Wednesday. Speaking at the official unveiling of the plant, various officials said the Kigali Special Economic Zone-based factory will be fed by raw materials produced locally. Officials said sourcing raw materials from local farmers is a key element that will benefit not only the producers but the country as well as the manufacturer. However, it was noted that local farmers still lack the capacity to satisfy the needs of the factory. AIF Rwanda is a joint venture between the Government of Rwanda and a consortium of four international partners; Royal DSM, Dutch development bank-FMO, CDC Group plc (the UK government’s Development Finance Institution) and IFC.

The European Union (EU), and the National Association of Commerce, Industry, Mines and Agriculture (NACCIMA), have insisted that the imperative of economic integration in West African sub region cannot be over emphasised. The EU Ambassador to Nigeria, Michel Arrion, during a visit to NACCIMA, in Lagos recently, noted that Nigeria plays a vital in the promotion of economic integration in the sub region. According to him, by 2050, Nigeria will be the third largest country in the world after China and India, adding that the EU is ready to work with Nigeria and other Economic Community of West African States (ECOWAS) member countries to promote trade in the region. Noting that the country is also one of the biggest markets in the world, he said Nigeria in ECOWAS is like Germany in Europe - with huge population and the biggest economy.

Monday, 03 July 2017

Samoa's minister of agriculture, La'aulialemalietoa Leuatea Polata'ivao Schmidt, confirmed in Parliament that negotiations with the World Bank to fund the project should be finalised in the near future. The minister said construction of the abattoir at Nu'u should start before the end of the year, with $US1.2 million from the World Bank allocated for the project. The government said the new abattoir would improve meat hygiene for domestic consumption and ultimately satisfy international regulations. The minister said the facility would take over the processing of all meat before it can be sold commercially and any products not processed through the abattoir will be banned from the commercial market.

Friday, 30 June 2017

Belarus is preparing to build a tractor factory in Angola to modernize agriculture, a logistics center and a diverse machinery network for industry. This was said on Monday in the country by the Foreign Affairs Minister of Belarus, Wladimir Makei, at the end of a meeting with his Angolan counterpart, Georges Chikoti, who is paying a working visit to that European country, reads a note from the MIREX that reached Angop. According to Wladimir Makei, the visit of the Angolan official paves the way for the exchange of information on financial, technological, scientific, academic and cultural capacity.

If going by the forecast, Nigeria market is billed to become the third largest world economy after China by 2050, said the European Ambassador to ECOWAS, Mr. Michel Arrion. Speaking during his working visit to the Nigerian Chamber of Commerce, Industry, Mines and Agriculture (NACCIMA) National Secretariat, Oba Akinjobi, Ikeja GRA, Lagos, on Friday, Arrion who was accompanied on the visit by Mr. Filipo Amato, EU Head, Trade & Economic Section, said that Nigeria remained one of the biggest markets in the world with potentials market for exportation. According to the Ambassador, “Nigeria is paradoxical and it is one of the richest markets in the world. Because private sector contributes a bulk to income generation and distribution Nigeria will be the third largest world economy in 2050.