Video guest: Josephine Mwangi

May 2017
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EDITO
Tuesday, 23 May 2017

The sugar industry is widely recognised as making a significant socio-economic contribution to many African, Caribbean and Pacific (ACP) Group of States, particularly in generating export earnings and creating employment in rural areas. Nevertheless, it is important to note that many ACP countries have been diversifying to reduce their reliance on the sugar industry. This means that, in some countries, sugar is not as important as it was in the past. The ACP sugar group is diverse. It includes some of the world’s lowest cost sugar producers where production has been growing over time (Malawi, Swaziland, Zambia).

The African Caribbean and Pacific (ACP) Sugar Group says it welcomes the new study on the sugar industry undertaken by the European Union. The “Study on Current and Forecast Market Developments for ACP Sugar Suppliers to the EU Market” sets out a comprehensive assessment of the risks for ACP/EBA sugar producers as a result of changes to the EU sugar regime and it contains a series of helpful tips. The study was undertaken by United Kingdom-based Cardno/LMC International and funded by the European Union. Chairman of the ACP Sugar Group, Samuel Chandler, who is also the Barbados Ambassador to the EU, said the ACP will actively pursue the implementation of the recommendations.

Tuesday, 22 November 2016

Technicians from the Technological Centre of Marine Affairs (Cetmar) are travelling to Mozambique to train staff from scientific institutes in cephalopod stock assessment and in sampling for mollusk farming. Contributing to the fight against poverty and living condition boost and food security in rural and coastal communities in the province of Cabo Delgado is the general objective of the actions being carried out by Cetmar Foundation in Mozambique together with the National Institute of Fisheries and Aquaculture Development (IDEPA) and of the National Institute of Fisheries Research (IIP).

The Minister of Fisheries and Aquaculture Development, Sherry Ayittey, has requested the private sector participation in developing aquaculture, after highlighting the viability of the business venture. Speaking at the 32nd National Farmers’ Day celebrations at Kintampo, the minister appealed private sector actors to support the development of aquaculture along its value chain, especially in the areas of financing and technical assistance. In addition, the official stressed the fact that the Ministry has created an enabling environment for the private sector to leverage on to help boost aquaculture in the country, GhanaWeb reported.

Tuesday, 15 November 2016

The European Investment Bank (EIB), the bank of the European Union, has signed a EUR 7,5 million (N$113,5 million) credit facility with Trustco Group Holdings Limited to finance small businesses and entrepreneurs in Namibia. At a ceremony held yesterday at Trustco's headquarters, the EIB, Europe's long-term lending institution, signed the agreement with Trustco Group Holdings Limited. “The European Investment Bank has a strong track record in supporting crucial investment programmes across Africa and around the world,” said Pim van Ballekom, European Investment Bank vice president.

According to South African table grape producers and exporters, one of the biggest breakthroughs since deregulation in agriculture has just been confirmed by the South African Table Grape Industry (SATI) and the Department of Agriculture, Forestry and Fisheries (DAFF). The producer organisation SATI is delighted that China changed the cold treatment protocol of South African table grapes to a more fruit friendly protocol. This creates a market opportunity to increase table grape exports from South Africa to China to about R2,5 billion over the next five years. DAFF has just confirmed that China’s cold treatment protocol is immediately effective from the 2016/2017 season.

Tuesday, 08 November 2016

China Entry-Exit Inspection and Quarantine Association (CIQA) and Fruit South Africa (FruitSA) have signed a Memorandum of Understanding (MoU) to broaden co-operative mechanisms for fruit trade. The MoU will allow South Africa and China to exchange information on quarantine and inspection, regulatory matters, market access, market development, technologies and other related issues, according to All Africa (South Africa). With China currently a major importer of South Africa’s citrus fruits to Asia, the MoU will also cover.

Monday, 07 November 2016

The UK coalition Government of 2010-2015 launched the Africa Free Trade Initiative (AFTi) in 2011 to help African countries to integrate into the world trade system, focusing on political, financial and technical support to boost trade between African countries, and trade of African countries with the world. To mark the fifth anniversary of AFTi the All-Party Parliamentary Group for Trade out of Poverty (APPG-TOP) appointed an Inquiry Committee of distinguished experts to review the achievements of AFTi so far, advise on whether there is a case for a successor-initiative – an“AFTi II” – and if so, what its targets should be and how it would work.

Thursday, 03 November 2016

The Ministerial Council of the Caribbean Regional Fisheries Mechanism (CRFM), the top policy and decision-making arm of the CARICOM agency, met on Thursday in Grand Cayman for its sixth special meeting. The meeting was held as part of the Caribbean Week of Agriculture, which is hosted in the Cayman Islands under the theme “Investing in Food and Agriculture”. High on the Ministerial Council’s agenda are plans to develop marine capture fisheries and aquaculture across the Caribbean, with the aim of reducing the region’s US$4 billion food import bill, while building a Caribbean seafood cuisine brand that the region and the world can embrace as a safe and healthy choice.

While poultry farms are making serious efforts, including financial investments, to make the region self-sufficient, several issues such as illegal imports from Brazil and cheap ‘dump chicken’ from the US are harming the industry, local entrepreneurs say. According to Trevin Nairne, export manager with Jamaica Broilers, throughout the Caribbean B-grade chicken is being imported from the US “that clearly is being dumped”. Meanwhile, Brazilian, Mexican and Chilean chicken is also entering the regional market. Nairne wondered how it is possible that a large facility such as Jamaica Broilers, which produces high quality products, exists in the region and yet inferior quality chicken is allowed to enter the regional market.