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Sat,18Nov2017

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Hannibal: Africa's tinderbox of jobless growth

The failure of job creation is blamed on the "missing middle"With growth comes jobs. That's the mantra that slips regularly from the tongues of most African leaders. Now two new reports are ringing alarm bells about a trend of jobless growth across the continent that is leaving young people discouraged and politically disaffected.

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Confusion as Host Cities delay 2013 AFCON decision

altSouth Africa has yet again delayed naming the host cities for the 2013 soccer African Cup of Nations because of a disagreement over costs.

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What do the stars earn?

photos/reuters/ montage/ the africa reportEach country has its own icons in sports or business and today their salaries are reaching record levels, sometimes mounting to millions of euros. 

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Uganda: Where to go out in Kampala?

altKampala has long had a reputation for partying hard seven days a week. What it previously lacked in variety it now makes up for – from crocodile curries to live jazz and poker

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A Chinese gift, an Ethiopian omission and a screaming Shame

The New AU building in Addis Ababa, Ethiopia is a gift from the Chinese government/Photo/All Rights ReservedThe publication that I pulled from the bookshelf is almost fifty years old. On its pristine cover is a photograph of African heads of states who founded the OAU...

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Africa Company Outlook: turbulence

altAfrican companies avoided the worst of the 2008 financial crisis. Now they are preparing to fend off commodity-price fluctuations and the impact of the European debt crisis.

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A Congolese fairytale: Discovering Berlin Silver Bear's best actress

Rachel Mwanza/Photo/Britta PedersenRachel Mwanza is the first African to receive the Berlin Silver Bear for Best actress. Mwanza's story is a fairytale like no other.

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African Union: A big budget and a begging bowl

Some AU member states are failing to pay their annual subscriptions/Photo/ReutersThe African Union (AU) Commission has tabled a US$274 million budget proposal for 2012, which African leaders are expected to debate and later adopt.

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EU fights maternal mortality in Ghana

The funds seeks to improve family planning, among othersThe European Commission has approved an additional support of 52 million euros (110 million Ghana cedis) this year for Ghana to help reduce maternal mortality.

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Telling theatrical tales in Tiata Fahodzi

Actor Lucian Msamati is artistic director of Tiata Fahodzi/Photo/BBC BBC.CO.UK/DOCTORWHOThe UK-based theatre company struggles against funding cuts and audiences with fixed mindsets about how stories should be told

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Press Freedoms in Nigeria and South Africa face different fortunes?

After almost a decade of pressure from civil-society groups, Nigeria’s President Goodluck Jonathan signed a Freedom of Information Act into law on 28 May – becoming the second African country after Liberia to have such legislation.

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Nigeria's oil and gas: ?Blueprint for reform and growth

Making the oil and gas industry productive and accountable are the priorities of President Goodluck Jonathan’s government. If he succeeds, Nigerian companies stand to benefit.

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Ghanaian economist warns against aid dependency

African countries must stop relying on aid since it has not transformed their economies, a senior economist at the Institute of Economic Affairs in Ghana has said.

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Gulf states: African domestic workers get a lease of life

In an effort to stop widespread oppression and violence against domestic workers in the Gulf states, many of them African, an international trade union body has called on governments to do more to protect them.

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How Castor Semenya changed everything


Castor SemenyaThe storm of controvery surrounding South African athlete Castor Semenya may prompt a rethink of gender stereotypes, says Azad Essa. 

 

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Interview: Nkosana Moyo


Nkosana MoyoThe Vice President of the African Development Bank speaks to The Africa Report about Africa in the Crisis alongside articles from our archives on the impact the crisis is having in Africa. 


 

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Boost your brand exposure and reach the market that means business. With a global audience of political and business leaders who value accuracy, incisive writing and understanding of African Affairs, The Africa Report offers Advertisers a unique mix of international and African circulation.

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Qualitative business magazine

The Africa Report is a bimonthly business magazine covering African politics, economy, society and culture and is published by the Paris-based Groupe Jeune Afrique, the leading pan African publisher for over 50 years.

The Africa Report, launched in 2005, has already been awarded twice best pan African business publication. Its success among the African and international business, diplomatic and institutional community since its launch as an annual publication in 2005, led it to grow first to a quarterly and then to a bimonthly in just four years. It is to go monthly in 2010.

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Targeted circulation

Its recognised high quality coverage of African business environment is combined with the strongest pan African circulations and worldwide audiences: 65,000 copies and 400,000 readers in more than 60 countries. The Africa Report offers a circulation unmatched by any other English-reading publication.

The magazine reaches a readership of politic and economic decision makers in key countries in Africa and worldwide (such as Canada, USA, Europe, China and Japan...)

The Africa Report already stands as a leading local business magazine in several African countries such as Angola, Ghana, Kenya, Liberia, Nigeria, South Africa, Tanzania, Uganda etc.

 

Circulation Breakdown

Added-value editorial environments

In each issue, we include a special “Country Report”, to ensure the country’s promotion among our readership, as well as a “sector dossier”. These special dossiers offer readers a concise overview of the country or sector, in-depth surveys of key-markets, company profiles and CEO interviews, as well as essential maps and data, to arrive at a complete picture of the opportunities and risks.

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Over 150 companies reach their market thanks to The Africa Report. Among them:

2MN Ltd Access bank,  AfDB, Addax & Oryx, AES SONEL, Afreximbank, Africa Sun, African Circle, African Union Commission, Africités, Agroway, Air Algérie, Air Senegal International, Amitelo, Anglogold Ashanti, Afrijet, AttijariwafaBank, APR Energy, ATC Banc ABC, Banco Africano de Investimentos, Barclays, BASF South Africa, Beach Side Hotel, Benetton, BGI Castel, BIM, BMI, BNEDT, British American Tobacco, Brussels Airlines, CBG, CCEI Bank GE, CFAO, Commerzbank, Contour Global, Croplife Daikin, Dangote Group, Degrémont, Demimpex, DHL, Diageo, Distell, Divestiture Implementation Committee, Djezzy, DP World, Dubai Internet City Ecobank, Econet, ECOWAS, Ekurhuleni, ENGEN, Equinoxe Oil and Gas, ESKOM, European Investment Bank, ExxonMobil Gateway, GC Net, Geolink, Ghana International Airlines, Global Contour, GS Telecom, Hewlett Packard,IDC, IFC, Intelsat, Intercontinental, ISCTEM, Iveco Kenya Airways, Konica Minolta, KWV Lagos State, Laurent Perrier, LC2 / Nasuba, Legacy Hotel, Lekki Free Trade Zone, Le Vendôme MCB, M CEL, Medicapital, Mercedes-Benz, Michelin, Millenium Finance Coporation, MTN, Multichoice / DStv, Mwana Africa Native Investment Group, NEPAD, NEPC, NNPC, Nokia Siemens Oando, Oracle Pernod Ricard, Petro SA, Philips Consulting, PMSA, Psitek RandWater, RascomStar-QAF, Renault, Renaissance Capital, Royal Air Maroc SABC, Sasol, SDMO Industries, SGS, SG-SSB Ghana, SIAT group, Siemens, Sifax Group, Sheraton, Somagec, Sonatrach, Sony Ericsson, SOTRA, South African Airways, Standard Bank, Suzuki TA Holdings, Tamoil, The Arab Contractors, Thuraya, Total, Trust Merchant Bank, Tullow Oil UBA, UNDP, Unisa Vale, Venture Capital trust Fund, Veolia, Volvo, Virgin Nigeria Western Union, Wienco Xerox Zamil Steel

 

Useful Links

A selection of informative, analytical and creative websites about Africa, picked by our editorial team.

 

Africa News – news from an Africa-wide network of reporters and citizen journalists

 

Voices of Africa – Comment from across the continent published by SA's Mail & Guardian


Global Voices– an all-encompassing round-up of Africa's best blogs and bloggers

 

Pambazuka News– an online forum and weekly newsletter on social justice in Africa

 

African Elections Database – a record of all past and upcoming African elections

 

African Union – portal for news and updates from the AU and its organs


International Crisis Group – Africa programme with weekly crisis updates


Institute of Security Studies – SA-based think-tank with briefings on politics, governance and security issues


Africa Can – Blog by World Bank Chief Economist for Africa, Shanta Devarajan

 

Africa Economic Outlook – economic data on 47 countries from the AfDB and OECD


The African Networka global NGO aimed at fostering technology and entrepreneurship 


African Capital Markets News - news and analysis on African stock exchanges, private equity and bond markets


Doing Business – World Bank's annual ranking of how fast things get done and where

 

Kwani– new writing from this Kenyan-based creative writing journal

 

Committee to Protect Journalists – news on journalists under pressure across Africa


Reporters Without Borders– updates on violations of African press freedom


African Scholar  – a wealth of advice for African students looking to study abroad 


 

Zuma's targets: jobs and services

After his overwhelming victory in the April elections, Jacob Zuma has chosen a cabinet that balances pragmatists and technocrats with radicals and loyalists but it will need to act quickly on the main issues to meet voter expectations

 


 

Appointing a cabinet of pro-market technocrats, communists, trade unionists, black millionaires and right-wing Afrikaners in the middle of a global economic catastrophe requires optimism and confidence in one’s leadership abilities. New President Jacob Zuma, who has come back from the political and legal brink to give the African National Congress (ANC) its fourth overwhelming electoral victory, has established himself as a far shrewder political operator than his many critics had suspected.

 

The daunting challenge facing the new cabinet is the full force of the global recession which has already pushed South Africa’s economy downwards after its best growth performance for over four decades. Despite this, voters expect the ANC to create jobs, cut widespread violent crime and expand the social provisions that have made South Africa one of the more generous states in the developing world. Zuma will be under less political pressure than before the election. The time for the left to extract firm commitments in exchange for electoral help is over. The ANC’s good showing suggests that it remains a broadly-based organisation. Maintaining the ANC’s occupation of the political centre makes good sense to the new man in charge.

The man and his allies

 

Profiles of Zuma's new
team incluidng Tokyo Sexwale,
Siphiwe Nyanda and
Zwelinzima Vavi.
Read more. 

 

 

Despite his social agility – bantering with the shack dwellers of KwaZulu-Natal or company bosses in Sandton – Zuma’s real persona remains as enigmatic as that of his predecessor. Getting his political education from some of the sharpest activists in the movement, Zuma knows how to balance people and politics. Too much has been made of his antipathy to the regime of Zimbabwean President Robert Mugabe, which pleased British Premier Gordon Brown so much. Zuma’s promise of a big political tent and tolerance of dissent won media plaudits but will be tested when the government faces its first crisis.

 

Room under the big tent

 

Zuma’s cabinet choices signal policy continuity rather than a big shift leftwards. To accommodate the range of views and interests, Zuma has increased the size of the government to 34 ministers and 28 deputy ministers. The ANC’s take of just over 65% of the votes with 77% voter turnout suggests people are more satisfied with the government’s performance than many commentators had thought.

 

Like his predecessors, Zuma has a plan to overhaul government: “I’m confident the new structures of government will enable the state machinery to speed up service delivery”, he said just after his inauguration on 9 May. “We reiterate that we will not tolerate laziness and incompetence and that we will emphasise excellence and achievement from the cabinet and public service.”

 

The engine room of the Zuma cabinet is the new Planning Commission, which is headed by former finance minister Trevor Manuel and based in the presidency. Manuel is in the strange position of being both very popular in the party – he came third in the ANC’s internal elections – and respected as a technocrat by the markets. Knowing that he is seen by the left as a ‘capitalist-roader’, Manuel has played his relationship with Zuma carefully.

 

Both seemed satisfied with the outcome. Zuma has got the presidential powers over policy and the ministers that he wanted. Manuel has won an important new post – he is effectively prime minister – and a leading role in shaping the country’s economic development after more than a decade as finance minister.?

 

Manuel’s record in finance and the impressive team he built there means that the Planning Commission is unlikely to be hamstrung by bureaucracy or patronage. Moving into Manuel’s old job is Pravin Gordhan, whose tenure at the national tax authority sharply increased revenues and corporate accountability.?

 

Powers of persuasion

 

?The third element of this trio is the new vice-president Kgalema Motlanthe, who had been interim President since Thabo Mbeki’s ousting last September. Although Motlanthe had wanted to leave government for a party or research post, Zuma prevailed upon him to stay. Unlike in many countries, the vice-presidency can be an important job in South Africa, as Mbeki proved during Nelson Mandela’s time at the helm.?

 

What the election means

 

How the parties will settle.
Read more.

Zuma’s allies in the South African Communist Party (SACP) and the trade unions had to be rewarded. The SACP wanted its secretary-general, Blade Nzimande, to be foreign minister. But Nzimande is better qualified for the education portfolio – he was an excellent chair of the parliamentary education portfolio committee – and Zuma has made him minister of higher education and training, in charge of the colleges and universities which have thrived in the post-apartheid era, unlike primary and secondary schools. ANC ultra-loyalist Angie Motshekga, minister of basic education, will have to handle a very troubled portfolio.?

 

The appointment of Rob Davies, an effective and conscientious MP, to the trade and industry portfolio has been applauded. As a liberal SACP member, Davies is not a natural free-trader, but his scepticism is shared by many in South African business. The other SACP appointee, Jeremy Cronin, also a hard-working MP, gets the deputy transport portfolio, also without causing jitters. ?

 

The trade unions drew up a shopping list of positions they wanted and have pronounced themselves satisfied with the result. Both Gordhan and the new minister for economic development, Ebrahim Patel, are former trade unionists, although neither are firebrand radicals. Trade unionists have good track records as ministers in ANC governments; some are already joking that if Zwelinzima Vavi, the general secretary of the Congress of South African Trade Unions, gets too critical of the Zuma government, he will be offered a powerful post within it.?

 

Still balancing, Zuma managed to keep his ex-wife, Nkosazana Dlamini-Zuma, by appointing her to his cabinet (after she switched loyalties away from former President Mbeki) and posting her to home affairs, possibly the toughest portfolio, with its history of corruption and inefficiency.

 

?The other main cabinet appointments – Zuma’s business backer Tokyo Sexwale to the ministry of human settlements (the renamed housing ministry), old intelligence comrade Lindiwe Sisulu to defence, ministerial survivor Jeff Radebe to justice – are equally even-handed.

 

?The idea of appointing a right-wing Afrikaner – Pieter Mulder, leader of the Freedom Front Plus – to deputy minister of agriculture looks either inspired or crazy. Mulder will have to tackle two of the toughest issues: the painfully slow process of land redistribution from whites to the black majority and the growing number of killings of white farmers.?

 

Even with a strong and diverse cabinet team, many risks will confront the Zuma era, the most important of which is that the slowdown in econmic performance will heighten social divisions. This raises questions about whether Gordhan, with Zuma’s blessing, might cave into trade union pressure and begin to encroach upon the Reserve Bank’s independence. ?

 

Old wine, Zuma’s bottles

 

?The most probable outcome is that there will be more Mbeki-style centrism, incremental reform, patchily administered, with pockets of real progress balanced by areas of retrogression. ?

 

The government will dress up existing programmes in new language and expand temporary public-works-type employment, but overall, public expenditure will absorb roughly the same share of GDP as before. There will be a more affable and not so racially-edgy leadership, but it will be even less predisposed than its predecessors to check venal behaviour within the party and within the public service. It will be even less attentive to human rights than Mbeki’s administration, certainly with respect to the rights of suspected criminals and prisoners. Zuma’s tough line on crime is one vein in his discourse on which he enjoys approval across the spectrum. ?

 

President Zuma and his centrist allies interpret the outcome of the election as public satisfaction. If the choice is between disappointing the left but maintaining policy continuity, or alienating businesses and the middle classes through significant and sudden policy shifts, Jacob Zuma will opt for the former course.

 

 

Zuma's targets: jobs and services

After his overwhelming victory in the April elections, Jacob Zuma has chosen a cabinet that balances pragmatists and technocrats with radicals and loyalists but it will need to act quickly on the main issues to meet voter expectations


Appointing a cabinet of pro-market technocrats, communists, trade unionists, black millionaires and right-wing Afrikaners in the middle of a global economic catastrophe requires optimism and confidence in one’s leadership abilities. New President Jacob Zuma, who has come back from the political and legal brink to give the African National Congress (ANC) its fourth overwhelming electoral victory, has established himself as a far shrewder political operator than his many critics had suspected.

The daunting challenge facing the new cabinet is the full force of the global recession which has already pushed South Africa’s economy downwards after its best growth performance for over four decades. Despite this, voters expect the ANC to create jobs, cut widespread violent crime and expand the social provisions that have made South Africa one of the more generous states in the developing world. Zuma will be under less political pressure than before the election. The time for the left to extract firm commitments in exchange for electoral help is over. The ANC’s good showing suggests that it remains a broadly-based organisation. Maintaining the ANC’s occupation of the political centre makes good sense to the new man in charge.

The man and his allies

Profiles of Zuma's new
team incluidng Tokyo Sexwale,
Siphiwe Nyanda and
Zwelinzima Vavi.
Read more.

Despite his social agility – bantering with the shack dwellers of KwaZulu-Natal or company bosses in Sandton – Zuma’s real persona remains as enigmatic as that of his predecessor. Getting his political education from some of the sharpest activists in the movement, Zuma knows how to balance people and politics. Too much has been made of his antipathy to the regime of Zimbabwean President Robert Mugabe, which pleased British Premier Gordon Brown so much. Zuma’s promise of a big political tent and tolerance of dissent won media plaudits but will be tested when the government faces its first crisis.

Room under the big tent

Zuma’s cabinet choices signal policy continuity rather than a big shift leftwards. To accommodate the range of views and interests, Zuma has increased the size of the government to 34 ministers and 28 deputy ministers. The ANC’s take of just over 65% of the votes with 77% voter turnout suggests people are more satisfied with the government’s performance than many commentators had thought.

Like his predecessors, Zuma has a plan to overhaul government: “I’m confident the new structures of government will enable the state machinery to speed up service delivery”, he said just after his inauguration on 9 May. “We reiterate that we will not tolerate laziness and incompetence and that we will emphasise excellence and achievement from the cabinet and public service.”

The engine room of the Zuma cabinet is the new Planning Commission, which is headed by former finance minister Trevor Manuel and based in the presidency. Manuel is in the strange position of being both very popular in the party – he came third in the ANC’s internal elections – and respected as a technocrat by the markets. Knowing that he is seen by the left as a ‘capitalist-roader’, Manuel has played his relationship with Zuma carefully.

Both seemed satisfied with the outcome. Zuma has got the presidential powers over policy and the ministers that he wanted. Manuel has won an important new post – he is effectively prime minister – and a leading role in shaping the country’s economic development after more than a decade as finance minister.


Manuel’s record in finance and the impressive team he built there means that the Planning Commission is unlikely to be hamstrung by bureaucracy or patronage. Moving into Manuel’s old job is Pravin Gordhan, whose tenure at the national tax authority sharply increased revenues and corporate accountability.


Powers of persuasion


The third element of this trio is the new vice-president Kgalema Motlanthe, who had been interim President since Thabo Mbeki’s ousting last September. Although Motlanthe had wanted to leave government for a party or research post, Zuma prevailed upon him to stay. Unlike in many countries, the vice-presidency can be an important job in South Africa, as Mbeki proved during Nelson Mandela’s time at the helm.


What the election means

How the parties will settle.
Read more.

Zuma’s allies in the South African Communist Party (SACP) and the trade unions had to be rewarded. The SACP wanted its secretary-general, Blade Nzimande, to be foreign minister. But Nzimande is better qualified for the education portfolio – he was an excellent chair of the parliamentary education portfolio committee – and Zuma has made him minister of higher education and training, in charge of the colleges and universities which have thrived in the post-apartheid era, unlike primary and secondary schools. ANC ultra-loyalist Angie Motshekga, minister of basic education, will have to handle a very troubled portfolio.


The appointment of Rob Davies, an effective and conscientious MP, to the trade and industry portfolio has been applauded. As a liberal SACP member, Davies is not a natural free-trader, but his scepticism is shared by many in South African business. The other SACP appointee, Jeremy Cronin, also a hard-working MP, gets the deputy transport portfolio, also without causing jitters. 


The trade unions drew up a shopping list of positions they wanted and have pronounced themselves satisfied with the result. Both Gordhan and the new minister for economic development, Ebrahim Patel, are former trade unionists, although neither are firebrand radicals. Trade unionists have good track records as ministers in ANC governments; some are already joking that if Zwelinzima Vavi, the general secretary of the Congress of South African Trade Unions, gets too critical of the Zuma government, he will be offered a powerful post within it.


Still balancing, Zuma managed to keep his ex-wife, Nkosazana Dlamini-Zuma, by appointing her to his cabinet (after she switched loyalties away from former President Mbeki) and posting her to home affairs, possibly the toughest portfolio, with its history of corruption and inefficiency.


The other main cabinet appointments – Zuma’s business backer Tokyo Sexwale to the ministry of human settlements (the renamed housing ministry), old intelligence comrade Lindiwe Sisulu to defence, ministerial survivor Jeff Radebe to justice – are equally even-handed.


The idea of appointing a right-wing Afrikaner – Pieter Mulder, leader of the Freedom Front Plus – to deputy minister of agriculture looks either inspired or crazy. Mulder will have to tackle two of the toughest issues: the painfully slow process of land redistribution from whites to the black majority and the growing number of killings of white farmers.


Even with a strong and diverse cabinet team, many risks will confront the Zuma era, the most important of which is that the slowdown in econmic performance will heighten social divisions. This raises questions about whether Gordhan, with Zuma’s blessing, might cave into trade union pressure and begin to encroach upon the Reserve Bank’s independence. 


Old wine, Zuma’s bottles


The most probable outcome is that there will be more Mbeki-style centrism, incremental reform, patchily administered, with pockets of real progress balanced by areas of retrogression. 


The government will dress up existing programmes in new language and expand temporary public-works-type employment, but overall, public expenditure will absorb roughly the same share of GDP as before. There will be a more affable and not so racially-edgy leadership, but it will be even less predisposed than its predecessors to check venal behaviour within the party and within the public service. It will be even less attentive to human rights than Mbeki’s administration, certainly with respect to the rights of suspected criminals and prisoners. Zuma’s tough line on crime is one vein in his discourse on which he enjoys approval across the spectrum. 


President Zuma and his centrist allies interpret the outcome of the election as public satisfaction. If the choice is between disappointing the left but maintaining policy continuity, or alienating businesses and the middle classes through significant and sudden policy shifts, Jacob Zuma will opt for the former course.

 
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