Video guest: Josephine Mwangi

October 2017
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EDITO
Friday, 20 October 2017

Venezuela’s president Nicolás Maduro visited Dominica and St. Kitts  to sign a Memorandum of Understanding (MOU). It shall paves the way for bilateral relations in a number of areas, including housing, infrastructure, law and order, education and training, agriculture, energy, technical assistance and health. Maduro said the support for St. Kitts and Nevis, which is primarily facilitated through the Petrocaribe agreement, is in keeping with the vision to “create a new world based on equality, solidarity and peace for all”.

The World Trade Organisation is holding its 10th Ministerial Conference (MC10) in Nairobi in  December shall be a crucial moment to dicsuss key issues, not just for Kenya but all Africa countries. In relation to agriculture, Yah Tandon highlights some of the key issues: 1) Food sovereignty based on domestic production, and control over the basic means of production such as land, water, seeds and technology; 2) Agriculture as first and foremost a livelihood issue - trade liberalisation will put at risk the livelihood of millions, especially small-scale farmers; 3) smallholder farming as it is now cannot transform Africa - the colonially structured division of labour has located agriculture in Africa and industry in Europe.

A new commitment has been made between the East African Community (EAC) and India in the areas of trade, cultural exchange and development cooperation. The India High Commissioner to Tanzania and representative to the EAC, Sandeep Arya, said his country was keen on strengthening trade and cultural ties with regional bloc. Bilateral projects are currently underway in the area of health and agriculture, and futher initiatives are being developed to boost trade volumes and promote industrial growth in East Africa.

UN Under-Secretary general and high representative for the least developed countries, landlocked developing countries and small island developing states said that China has been taking a leading role in promoting South-South cooperation.  South-South cooperation is changing the global economic landscape in the areas like technical cooperation, trade ties as well as investment relationship.  A high-level roundtable on South-South cooperation, co-hosted by China and the United Nations, will be held on Saturday at the UN headquarters on the sideline of the UN Sustainable Development Summit, which is going to adopt a post-2015 sustainable development agenda. Chinese President Xi Jinping is expected to chair the high-level roundtable.

Monday, 28 September 2015

The CTA Brussels News Service is providing EU-ACP policy news since 2004, on various key thematic areas. In addition to this news service, we also provide news on ACP intra-regional trade, and south-south cooperation (investments of emerging countries' in agriculture in the ACP regions). The main stories for the week are featured in our newsletter and all stories can be found in our Regional Trade and the South-South cooperation sections.

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Friday, 25 September 2015

South-Africa to host next Forum on China-Africa Cooperation (FOCAC) on December 4 and 5, and shall be preceeded by a senior officials meeting on  December 2. International Relations and Cooperation Minister Maite Nkoana-Mashabane said “As co-chair of FOCAC for the period 2012-2018, South Africa looks forward to hosting this historic event. This will be the second summit since the inception of FOCAC in 2006 and the first on the continent. (…) South Africa looks forward to President Xi Jinping’s participation in this historic event.

Fostering economic cooperation for improving trade and crossborder investment, removing barriers and hurdles, such as cost of air fares and visas; as well as the setting up a regional low cost aviation company to service the Indian Ocean Islands, were issues discussed at the first meeting of the Commission Economique Regionale Mixte Maurice/Réunion, held yesterday at the Cyber Tower, Ebène. Discussions were led by the Minister of Finance and Economic Development, Mr Seetanah Lutchmeenaraidoo, for the Mauritian side, and by Senator Didier Robert, for Reunion Island.

In Africa, the Commonwealth of Nations as an organisation is an enduring power, despite its origins as anEnglish language-based association formed by the ex-British Empire. Today, far from the 53-member Commonwealth unravelling, it has inspired three imitators: the Organisation Internationale de la Francophonie, the Comunidade dos Países de Língua Portuguesa, and the Commonwealth of Independent States. There are even overlapping memberships of both organizations e.g. Mauritius and the Seychelles enjoy membership of both the Commonwealth and the Francophonie, reflecting their histories as having been colonies of both empires.

Thursday, 24 September 2015

Agricultural experts have warned against the practice of conventional agriculture, whereby the land is ploughed and the soil loosened before planting. According to the experts, it is not sustainable for the world's burgeoning population -- which the United Nations projects will reach 8.5 billion people by 2030, from 7.3 billion currently -- as it is putting a strain on land resources. Furthermore, the situation is worsened by the effects of climate change. Experts recommend soil management practices such as conservation agriculture, which increases productivity based on three principles -- minimal soil disturbance (reduced tillage), permanent soil cover (mulching) and crop rotation.

Venezuelan Foreign Minister Delcy Rodriguez went to Trinidad and Tobago to hold diplomatic talks Tuesday. The talks are aimed at boosting bilateral ties including trade between the two neighbouring countries.