D.A. Barber, 4:22 am AFKI Original
With Africa’s remote “Small Island Developing States” – known as SIDS – agonizingly distant from the mainland, providing needed sustainable electric power can become an expensive challenge, particularly in light of their vulnerability to the effects of climate change.
D.A. Barber, 11:54 am AFKI Original
The official U.S.-African Leaders Summit is planned from Monday, Aug. 4 to Wednesday, Aug. 6 in Washington, focusing on trade and investment, but leading up to the summit are a number of other related events that are also attracting African leaders.
D.A. Barber, 12:07 am AFKI Original
And one thing is clear: energy – a topic that has been on the minds of African leaders since President Obama announced his Power Africa initiate a year ago – will be an issue on the table of many meetings. After all, only about a quarter of the sub-Saharan Africa population has access to electricity and 10 percent per year capacity growth is needed to meet electricity demand, according to the World Bank.
D.A. Barber, 2:00 am AFKI Original
The upcoming U.S-Africa Leaders Summit will focus on trade and investment opportunities that could mean new markets for U.S. companies. But even U.S. CEOs already doing business in Africa aren’t necessarily fully committed, a stakeholder told AFKInsider. “(The Administration) thinking is that if you’re going to get more U.S. companies involved, you have to get the CEO turned on to Africa. And that’s an uphill climb in a lot of places … even some of our companies tell us the same thing — that their CEOs aren’t necessarily committed.”
D.A. Barber, 4:05 am AFKI Original
Organized under the theme, “2014 Year of Agriculture and Food Security,” the African leaders attending the summit were unanimous on the strategies needed to promote the continent’s agricultural development. Agriculture accounts for a third of Africa’s GDP and employs about 60 percent of the labor force. Attendees called for increased public-private investment, more irrigation projects, increased access to land, and better use of science and technology to modernize farming.
D.A. Barber, 2:36 am AFKI Original
Sub-Saharan Africans living abroad sent $32 million home in 2013, but their families pay exorbitant remittance transaction fees approaching an estimated $1.8 billion annually – sometimes as much as 20 percent of the value of the money transfers. “The average cost of remittances to Sub-Saharan Africa has remained stubbornly high at around 12 percent of the transaction value,” according to the World Bank’s April 2014 Migration and Development Brief. Compared with other regions, money transfers to Africa have among the highest fees.
D.A. Barber, 2:26 am AFKI Original
Fraudulent invoices have channeled tens of billions of dollars illegally into and out of five African countries, resulting in billions of dollars in lost tax revenue.
D.A. Barber, 2:21 am AFKI Original
Despite rising insurgency, abductions, corruption allegations and general turmoil, Nigeria ranks as the top investment destination for international organizations and multinational companies, according to a June report. The Washington, DC-based Frontier Strategy Group, which advises multinationals doing business in emerging markets, has released its Frontier Market Sentiment Index, contracted by the Wall Street Journal.
D.A. Barber, 3:22 pm AFKI Original
Rather than seeing Africa as “key” or a “priority,” Beijing sees it as part of the foundation for China’s broader strategic ambitions, according to a recent report. Sino-African relations have been relatively smooth and free of major disturbances, “thanks to a shared sense of historical victimization by Western colonial powers and a common identity or affinity as developing countries.”
D.A. Barber, 3:20 am AFKI Original
Agriculture can deliver economic growth in Africa but first there must be access to funding, infrastructure improvements and a change in the perception of risk, stakeholders say. The Africa Union’s commitment to agriculture is playing out during its 23rd summit June 20-27, with the theme: “Agriculture and Food Security in Africa.”