Video guest: Josephine Mwangi

December 2017
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EDITO
Wednesday, 13 December 2017

Officials are projecting a ten per cent increase in exports to the Caribbean Community (CARICOM), following a five-day trade mission to St Lucia, Grenada and Guyana late last month. Speaking at a media conference called by the Barbados Investment and Development Corporation (BIDC) yesterday to report on the trip, Minister of International Business, Commerce and Industry Donville Inniss noted that between January and September last year, the island exported some $259 million in goods to the 15-nation grouping.

Tuesday, 09 February 2016

Primary industries are the backbone of many Pacific Island countries but there is a great need for more up-to-date information on trade in the region to better understand and grow national economies. These were the sentiments expressed by Fiji’s Trade Commissioner to Papua New Guinea, Navitalai Tuivuniwai, at today’s launch of a comprehensive Pacific Islands Trade Report 2010-2014 alongside the European Union Ambassador for the Pacific, H.E. Andrew Jacobs, and Pacific Community Director-General, Dr Colin Tukuitonga, in Suva, Fiji. “To date there is very little readily available information on trade statistics in the Pacific region and this report released by the Pacific Community and the European Union goes a long way to help fill that gap,” Mr Tuivuniwai said.

Ethiopia and Djibouti are partners in many ways so far and the two neighbouring countries are registering better results in the economic and people-to-people ties. Prime Minister Hailemariam Dessalegn said that Ethiopia and Djibouti will further strengthen economic and people- to- people ties and partnership to improve trade and competitiveness in the world market. Similar bilateral discussions were also held with Serbia, Netherlands and Luxembourg presidents, delegates and senior officials on the sideline of 26th AU Summit. The Premier in his talks with President of Djibouti Ismaïl Omar Guelleh said that Ethiopia and Djibouti are partners in many ways so far and the two neighboring countries are registering better results in the economic and people-to-people ties.

Wednesday, 03 February 2016

Outside of Asia, rice is as big a part of diets in west and central Africa as in any region of the world. Though cultivated for over 2,000 years in the Niger River flood plains, local rice production decades ago ceased to keep pace with the rapidly increasing consumption of burgeoning urban populations. Consequently, the 20 or so mostly coastal countries extending from arid and sparsely populated Mauritania to lushly forested Congo and anchored by regional giant Nigeria now account for more than a quarter of global rice trade. Roughly 12 million tonnes gets imported, complementing local output approaching the same amount. Collectively, and in most cases individually, the countries of the vast region have sufficient arable land and water resources to be self-sufficient and even generate large surpluses for export.

Dominican Republic Export and Investment Center (CEI-RD) director Jean Alain Rodriguez on Tuesday said Dominican exports topped US$9.6 billion in 2015, and expects the figure to surpass US$10.0 billion this year. The official, who announced the RD Export event, said it will be the largest exhibit for exportable items to reach foreign markets, will take place at Santo Domingo´s Sans Souci Port Convention Center. Rodriguez said more than 1,000 potential buyers linked to agribusiness, construction, manufacturing and industry, health, beauty, technology, culture, government services, among others are expected to attend the event.

Angola and Zambia held in the last three years trade valued at five million dollars, said on Thursday in Luanda, the Angolan Minister of Trade, Rosa Pacavira. According to the minister, who was speaking at the signing of the bilateral agreement with her Zambian counterpart, Margaret D. Mwanaktwa, such trade was based more on oil, sea products, minerals, electrical equipment and basic food products. To the Angolan minister, with the signing of this new agreement, trade between the two countries will improve significantly, especially in the fight against hunger and poverty reduction in both nations, as well as attract private investment between them.

Monday, 01 February 2016

Papua New Guinea is pushing hard to get rid of the trade imbalance currently and is in favour of Fiji. PNG Minister for Trade, Commerce and Industry, Richard Maru, who was in the country two weeks ago, has raised this alarm bell upon his return to PNG. PNG media reports have highlighted concerns where Fiji exports goods worth more than K58 million (FJ$41 million) to PNG while PNG exports only K4 million (FJ$2.8 million) to Fiji. But figures from the Fiji Bureau of Statistics reveals that Fiji’s exports into PNG dropped drastically in 2014 in comparison to 2012 and 2013. Fiji’s exports into PNG in 2012 was around $73 million, 2013 it went down to $63 million and in 2014, it was $17 million which was a big drop.

The Government has announced revisions to the issuing of permits for the importation of fruit and vegetables into Port Moresby. The announcement was made yesterday by Prime Minister Peter O’Neill and Agriculture and Livestock Minister Tommy Tomscoll. There will be a three-month moratorium for businesses in the retail sector to become better acquainted with import reforms that are designed to enhance local production and further protect Papua New Guinea’s bio-security. Mr O’Neill said the Government has taken on the views of businesses in providing the extension, and that ultimately the introduction of the new system will provide a boost for agricultural production.

The Ethiopian government plans to increase coffee exports by 45 percent in 2016 through incentives and increased support to farmers as the population suffers food shortages in one of the worst droughts in 50 years. Coffee made up almost half of Ethiopia’s gross domestic product in 2014, according to the World Bank, BusinessWeek reported. The crop was responsible 84 percent of exports and 80 percent of total employment in Ethiopia. The U.N. estimates that 15 percent of Ethiopians will face food shortages in 2016. That’s 15 million people, ABC reports. Crop production has failed completely in some areas of Ethiopia and is down 50-to-90 percent in others, according to the U.N.’s Food and Agriculture Organisation.

Government has taken note of developments in the setting up of a Mauritius Commodities Exchange, with the assistance of the Dubai Multi Commodities Centre (DMCC). Following meetings that the Minister of Financial Services, Good Governance and Institutional Reforms had with the Executive Chairperson and CEO of DMCC, the latter has agreed to assist in the setting up of the Spot Trading Market for Gold, Diamond and other precious metals in Mauritius, and provide necessary guidance in developing rules/regulations and other soft infrastructure to support the Trading Market.