Video guest: Josephine Mwangi

June 2018
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EDITO
Wednesday, 20 June 2018

One of the main causes of food insecurity for farmers in rural areas is limited access to agricultural inputs. In a bid to combat that, international donors and the Food and Agriculture Organisation of the United Nations (FAO) have instigated input trade fairs and voucher schemes to provide poor, vulnerable and food insecure farmers with access to seeds, fertilisers and tools. Similar schemes are being promoted by the EU, which has placed support for ‘resilience’ in farming and food security at the heart of its projects in sub-Saharan Africa.

Rwanda and the Kingdom of The Netherlands have pledged to maintain strong ties with emphasis on investment, officials from both countries have said. They were speaking during celebrations to mark the Dutch King's Day at the Ambassador's residence in Nyarutarama, a Kigali suburb. Over the years, several Dutch companies have invested in Rwanda, including Heineken, Royal DSM that holds the majority shares in Africa Improved Foods Company, Unilever in Tea processing and KLM Airlines.

Monday, 30 April 2018

Agri-Vie, a private investment fund focused on food and the food industry in Sub-Saharan Africa, and Norfund, the Norwegian investment fund for developing countries, have jointly invested $17 million in Marginpar Flower Group Holdings, a company specialised in the sale of flowers in East Africa. Herman Marais, the co-founder of Agri-Vie, which includes among its backers the private equity arm of South African insurer Sanlam, said the aim of the investment was to provide sustainable support for the growth of Marginpar, which operates in Tanzania, Kenya, Ethiopia and even Zimbabwe.

Less than a week after the accreditation of its permanent chargé d’affaires, on Monday, the Belgian diplomatic mission in Niamey unveiled its brand new coat of arms at its diplomatic mission, a sign of the improved relations and cooperation between Niamey and Brussels. According to the new chargé d’affaires, Pierre Charlier, the unveiling of the coat of arms and new door plaques, which follows the presentation of his credentials to the Niger authorities, upgrades the Belgian representation to the level of an embassy, and is evidence of Belgium’s interest in Niger.

The discussion and inputs resulting from the 5th Annual SEforALL Africa Workshop will flow into the strategic work areas of the SEforALL Africa Hub and the National SEforALL Secretariats.More than 750 leaders from government, business, civil society and international organizations will gather from 2nd to 4th to May 2018 in Lisbon for the 4TH SEforALL Forum with the title: “Leaving No One Behind”. The Forum will examine the latest data on progress — or lack of — in achieving SDG7 goals. A highlight will be the launch of the 2018 Global Tracking Framework report, which benchmarks annual progress towards achieving universal access to modern energy services, doubling renewable energy and improving energy efficiency by 2030.

The 53rd International Sugar Organization Council Conference will be held in Addis Ababa from June 25-28 this year. Ethiopian Sugar Corporation which was selected Chair of the International Council for 2018 at the last conference held in London 2017 made the announcement today. Ethiopian Sugar Corporation Communication Director Gashaw Aychiluhem told ENA that the nation will benefit from hosting the international conference.

EUR 12.5 million loan from the European Investment Bank (EIB) coupled with EUR 5 million European Union (EU) grant to finance modernisation and enlargement of Seychelles’ main commercial harbour, Port Victoria. Agence Française de Développement (AFD) also to provide EUR 16.5 million loan to project. EUR 2 million worth of technical assistance will also be put at the disposal of the SPA. During a public ceremony held in the presence of H.E. Danny Faure, President of the Republic of the Seychelles, agreements were signed between the European Investment Bank, the European Union and the Seychelles Ports Authority to finance the rehabilitation and expansion of the commercial part of the Port Victoria harbour.

The Zambezi River Authority (ZRA) has started the final lap of the spillway rehabilitation procurement process with the launch of the works tender to a shortlist of pre-qualified companies. The procurement is expected to be completed in time for the works contract to be awarded by the last quarter of 2018, according to a statement released on Wednesday. The spillway rehabilitation is being funded jointly by the World Bank, African Development Bank and the Government of Sweden.

Thursday, 26 April 2018

The co-presidents of the ACP-EU Joint Parliamentary Assembly (JPA) have welcomed the commitment of the 79-nation African, Caribbean and Pacific (ACP) Group of States and the 28-nation European Union (EU) to negotiate a successor Agreement to the ACP-EU Cotonou Partnership Agreement. The 15th Regional Meeting of the JPA took place in Kenya's capital Nairobi from April 11-13, 2018. The Agreement, signed in Cotonou on June 23, 2000, was concluded for a 20-year period from 2000 to 2020. It is the most comprehensive partnership agreement between developing countries and the EU.

Caribbean development partners and beneficiaries of the Hub and Spokes Programme, an aid-for-trade initiative, began a regional planning workshop April 23–25 with appreciation of the programmes tangible impact on the ground. The workshop is being held at the Guyana Marriott Hotel Georgetown, Guyana. Caribbean country beneficiaries and advisers will work to develop a new framework that is likely to govern the implementation and management of a successor programme.