Rwanda: Latest News
Tom Jackson, 9:58 pm AFKI Original
TerraPay is the latest mobile payments platform to enter the crowded East African market with its launch in Tanzania. The challenge for the market lies in navigating regulatory hurdles from one country to the next, an expert said. Interoperability has the potential to unlock intra-African mobile remittances and could be key to promoting cross-border trade. It is expected to overcome challenges to scale and facilitate micro-transfers across borders, a common theme for Africa’s low-income population. Expect to see some consolidation in the market.
Peter Pedroncelli, 7:22 am
The Rwandan government’s partnership with Microsoft is benefiting efforts to roll out online education initiatives that are envisaged to become standard across the country in the next three years. The giant American multinational technology company is working with the Rwandan authorities in the pursuit of their short and long-term objectives to make Rwanda a digital learning pioneer on the African continent. By June this year, the Rwandan government is aiming to see around 50 percent of all subjects taught online.
Staff, 9:41 pm
Many South African business leaders say that malaria is among the top reasons they do not travel to other African countries. The world’s first malaria vaccine will undergo trials in Kenya, Ghana and Malawi in 2018, possibly heralding victory over a disease that still kills close to 500,000 people a year, mainly Africans. Although health is a cardinal element of the human development index, this is not a health story, but an economic and a human story. Africa’s bid for economic self-reliance stands to benefit from a malaria vaccine.
Peter Pedroncelli, 9:33 am
In the interests of reducing inequality and poverty within the African continent in the long-term, and avoiding the growth of populism across Africa, the G20 countries, headed by Germany, are pushing for a plan that will increase private investment and infrastructure development in Africa. Speaking at a forum on global infrastructure at the Inter-American Development Bank in Washington, German finance minister Wolfgang Schaeuble set forth a proposed scheme that will see various G20 member countries and international lenders partner with African countries in order to attract global investors.
Staff, 3:59 pm
Wind and solar power in Africa are short-term solutions that cannot fix serious, immediate problems. African cities need abundant, reliable electricity, and they need it now. Wind and solar do not equal real economic development or really improved living standards. African governments need to stand up to Europeans, global banks and environmentalists who oppose big power plants in Africa. Our leaders need to remember that Europe and the U.S. did not have a World Bank or other outside help when they modernized and industrialized. They did it themselves.
Staff, 2:57 pm
At a time when aid is under political pressure, a bold approach is needed to maximize the efficiency of donor resources. While governments in Africa are spending more on public infrastructure themselves, outside finance is still required, especially for regional projects — rarely a priority for national governments. Aid from Africa’s traditionally generous foreign donors is set to shrink. There may be a solution. The “Big Bond” is a strategy for leveraging foreign aid funds in international capital markets to generate financing for massive infrastructure investment.
Staff, 12:01 am
The fall in African private equity investment in 2016 could be a short-term blip. Among the losers was US-based Carlyle, one of the world’s winningest investment firms. Carlyle invested $147m in Nigeria’s Diamond Bank in 2014. The bank’s market cap fell by 90% over the subsequent two years. Bob Geldof’s PE firm 8 Miles just invested in Blue Skies, a British fruit firm that operates in Africa. Utilities including telecoms were the most popular target for private equity investment in 2016. West Africa was the most active region.
Peter Pedroncelli, 2:18 am AFKI Original
Many countries in Africa have extremely high central bank interest rates compared to most of the world, but there are some who boast lower rates that compare favourably on a global scale. Lower interest rates allow the people of that country to be able to afford loans and pay them back at more favourable rates versus countries where the interest rates are much higher. In comparison, the United States federal reserve has an interest rate of 1 percent, while the United Kingdom’s rate is currently set at 0.25 percent. We take a look at 13 African countries with the lowest central bank interest rates.
Tom Jackson, 10:06 am AFKI Original
Vancouver tech innovator Barrett Nash was drawn to Rwanda for its repuation as an easy place to start a tech business. Rwanda issues entrepreneur visas to foreigners. It’s a lab-like environment where innovations can be cooked up and then brought to other African markets, Nash said. “Many startups try to conquer a market before they’ve mastered a product. A startup needs to grow into markets like Lagos and Nairobi, but getting the product right first is more important. Rwanda has created a continent-leading platform for taking this first pivotal step.”
Dana Sanchez, 4:10 pm
For many Western companies, Africa is a fresh start — an opportunity to build facilities and processes that are environmentally friendly and safe. And don’t forget the tax breaks. Manufacturing in Africa is expensive, training and the quality control are expensive. Most apparel will continue to be made in Asian countries where labor is still relatively cheap and infrastructure, in place. But in China, the world’s apparel manufacturing leader, wages have increased 80% since 2010.
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