African Business

African Business is a monthly business publication. Founded in 1966, IC Publications Ltd. publishes this magazine. The Editor is Anver Versi.

Articles from No. 337, December

AB Guide to African Currencies
AB Guide to African Currencies Country Currency [pounds sterling]STG Algeria (Dinar) 139.79 Angola (New Kwanza) 157.11 Benin (CFA) 936.08 Botswana...
Africa's Healing Plants Find International Markets: African Plants Which Have Been Traditionally Used to Enhance Health and Beauty Are Now Being Commercialised and Sold to a Willing and Growing Market around the World. Dominique Magada Reports on How an NGO Is Assisting Small-Scale Farmers to Turn Natural Products into Income
Even though it is only beginning, the market for natural products and so-called nutraceuticals--i.e. food with health properties--is fast becoming big business. Global sales for herbal remedies alone are expected to double to reach about $40bn by 2010...
Africa's Health 'On the Mend': Africa's Political and Economic Landscape Is Improving Steadily According to a Number of External Reports on the Continent's Health. However, the Same Reports Often Display a Reluctance to Acknowledge Africa's Successes
The structural economic and political landscape of this astonishingly rich mineral and energy region is changing for the better, enabling African economies to catch up with their Asian counterparts and compete for greater shares of global trade and...
Africa's Uranium Treasure Hunt Is On: Nuclear Energy Is Now Considered the World's Only Sure Alternative to the Diminishing Reserves of Fossil Fuel. Africa Is Sitting on a Huge Pile of Uranium, the Principal Source of Nuclear Energy. Could This Be the Start of a Uranium Bonanza for Africa? Tom Nevin Reports
The inexorable rise in the price of oil, the choking effects of coal as a power generator and the irrational behaviour of rivers have all contributed to banishing the ghosts of Chernobyl and Three Mile Island and welcoming back the atom as the only...
A Great Celebration of African Banking: Anver Versi Describes the Glamour and Excitement of the First Ever African Banker Awards Ceremony Which Was Held in Washington DC in October
By all accounts, the first African Banker Awards ceremony was a huge success. The event was held at the Grand Hyatt in Washington DC on 18 October. There was a total of 15 awards--ranging from the best micro lending house on the continent to the two...
Avoiding the 'Curse' of Oil: The News That Oil Has Been Discovered in the Lake Albert Basin Has Been Widely Welcomed in Kampala. Even Modest Oil Production Could Provide a Much Needed Injection of Finance into the Government's Coffers. Can Uganda Avoid the 'Curse of Oil' Asks Neil Ford
Although the Ugandan government has made a great deal of progress in rebuilding the national economy over the past decade, the country's economic base remains dangerously thin. Revenues from oil can help to fund infrastructural projects and improve...
Doubts over Africom
The US's Africa Command structure, now operational, is a clear indication that Africa has acquired the same strategic importance to the US as other regions of the world. But most of Africa has not rolled out the welcome mat; instead there are growing...
Informal Systems Most Popular in Kenya: A Recent Study on Access to Finance in Kenya Came Up with Some Surprising Results, Such as the Low Popularity of Microfinance Institutions and the Crucial Role of Mobile Phone Money Transfers. Andrea Bohnstedt Reports from Nairobi
Kenya's financial sector is probably the most advanced in East Africa, but to date, only an estimated 55% to 60% of the population have access to financial services. A strong financial sector is seen as a key element in a country's economic development,...
Investment, Not Rebranding, Is the Key: South Africa's Recent Economic Success, with Growth Rates Registering over 5% per Annum, Has Placed Enormous Strains on the Country's Logistics, Especially Its Road Linkages. New Investment Is Designed to Take Some of the Load off Roads onto Rail. Will This Work, Asks Neil Ford
The South African government has agreed an infrastructural budget of R78m for transport parastatal Transnet for the next five years. New investment will be targeted at improved port facilities and greater rail capacity. But the real test of the corporation's...
New Funding for Mozambique Roads, Rail: Mozambique Is Continuing the Process of Turning One of the World's Most Dilapidated Transport Systems into One Fit to Support a Rapidly Growing Economy. Report by Neil Ford
Some public money is being put into the rail, road and port sectors but foreign private sector firms are also investing heavily in new projects. Most recently, the government has authorised $80m of new investment in the port of Maputo by South African...
Nigerian Award Winners Set IPO Trend: A Spate of IPOs within Nigeria's Banking Sector Has Realised over $10Bn in New Money over a Relatively Short Period. Most of the IPOs Were Oversubscribed, Reflecting the Solid Confidence the Industry Has Now Established. Neil Ford Reports
Nigerian banks certainly attracted many of the plaudits at the inaugural African Banker Awards in Washington in October. Access Bank, Zenith Bank and United Bank of Africa (UBA) all won categories outright, while a string of other financial institutions...
Power from the Winds of Atlas: Morocco Does Not Possess the Oil and Gas Reserves of Other North African States but It Is Finally Making the Most of the One Energy Source That It Does Possess in Abundance-Wind Power Potential. Neil Ford Reports
Rabat has decided to follow Egypt's lead in encouraging the development of wind farms to complement its stock of thermal power plants. With relatively little hydro potential, the Maghreb nation currently relies on imported gas to provide power sector...
Spreading the Benefits beyond South Africa: Southern and Eastern African Countries Are Already Busy Working out Plans to Capitalise on the Half Million Visitors Expected to Descend on South Africa during the 2010 World Cup. Tom Nevin Reports
Against a rising tide of resentment that the 2010 soccer World Cup will be almost exclusively a South African affair with the rest of Africa on the outside looking in, other African countries are making plans not to be left out of the spoils of the...
Standard Bank Deal Points to New China-Africa Direction: China's Acquisition of a 20% Stake in Standard Bank, Africa's Largest Financial Services Company, Could Be the Beginning of an Exciting New Pattern of Partnership with Africa. Tom Nevin Reports
It was only a matter of time before China began laying the financial foundation to its courtship of Africa. In a move that came out of the blue, the giant Industrial and Commercial Bank of China (ICBC) took a 20% stake in the Standard Bank of South...
Step Up for Telecoms Promises Widespread Benefits: Two Separate Fibre Optic Cable Systems Will Vastly Improve Kenya's International Telecoms Connections and Hopefully Open Up a Fresh Window of Economic Opportunity. Neil Ford Has the Story
The Kenyan government has finally awarded the contract to develop a high capacity fibre optic cable to connect East Africa to the rest of the world. The cable should greatly improve internet services and capacity, while also reducing telecommunications...
Stop Carping about Mo Award
I wonder if the Mo Ibrahim Foundation expected the storm of controversy that would surround its announcement that the former Mozambique president, Joachim Chissano, was the first winner of the $5m African Leadership award. Comments poured in from...
Tackling the Dark Side of Oil Deals: With the Trend Moving towards Greater Accountability by African Governments and the Multinational Companies That Operate in Africa, the Extractive Industries Transparency Initiative Is Acquiring Greater Relevance. but Questions about Its Effectiveness Remain
It is often argued that the discovery of oil, gas and other valuable minerals can be as much of a burden as a boon to African economies. All too often, corruption, political and economic instability and a lack of interest in the rest of the economy...
Thinking about the Box: The Growth in Containerised Cargo Has Grown 600% in the Last 35 Years and Will Continue to Expand. This Calls for Not Only Bigger Ships but Larger Harbours to Accommodate Them and the Associated Logistics That Go with It. Tom Nevin Describes How One African Shipping Company Is Facing Up to the New Challenges
In the 50 years since the first container went to sea, some 90% of the globe's freight now crosses the oceans in metal boxes, safe from weather and pilfering fingers. The growth in containerised shipping increased by 600% in the last 35 years, while...
Uganda's Fashion Butterfly: With Lots of Passion and Very Little Money, Santa Anzo Has Created a Hugely Successful Company Specialising in Fashion and Modelling in Uganda. but the Problems of Being a Small-Scale Enterprise Continue to Dog Her Efforts. Andrea Brohnstedt Reports from Kampala
In the beginning, Ugandan president Yoweri K Museveni thought Arapapa was a bit of joke, Santa Anzo, owner and managing director of the company, recalls with a chuckle. However, long before Santa was honoured with the Presidential Transformers Appreciation...
Who Will Lead South Africa after Mbeki?
One of the most important elections in Africa takes place this month (December) in South Africa when the ruling African National Congress (ANC) party elects its new office bearers. It seems certain that whoever wins the party presidency will be South...