News from Cape Verde, Angola & Mozambique

Archive for November, 2010|Monthly archive page

Politics & Islands

In Cape Verde on November 25, 2010 at 7:37 pm

POLITICS

MpD-leader Carlos Veiga paid a pre-campaign visit to the Capeverdean communities in the Netherlands and Luxembourg last weekend. A long delay of the plane that brought him to Europe made Veiga arrive four hours late at a Rotterdam venue where his most loyal backers were kept waiting. The built-up tension exploded when Veiga finally entered the hall on the tunes of the catchy song “Nos Lider”. The coming election campaign promises heated struggles among the most far flung communities of the diaspora. Capeverdeans abroad are entitled to vote for six seats in Cape Verde’s parliament (AW).

INTERNATIONAL

The United States government, by way of the US Embassy in Praia, told A Semana Online that it has no knowledge of any specific problem with the bank accounts held by Cape Verde’s diplomatic missions in Washington, D.C. and New York. According to the US Embassy’s third secretary, Michael J. Ralles, the US government’s position is exactly the same as that expressed in a communiqué issued by Cape Verde’s Ministry of Foreign Affairs and stated by State Secretary of Foreign Affairs Jorge Borges (A Semana).

The Minister of National Defence, Cristina Fontes Lima advocated a broad maritime security vision, articulated with national security, which includes the issue of sustainability of marine resources, in addition to the classical conventions (Inforpress).

LAW ENFORCEMENT

The president of the Public Order Police Socio-Professional Association has submitted his resignation. In a letter addressed to the association’s general assembly, Rufino Lima justifies the decision with “attacks from a number of colleagues” and his own personal “demotion” (A Semana).

FOGO

Elected municipal officials in Mosteiros unanimously approved a deliberation allowing the municipal chamber to take out a 60 million-escudo bank loan aimed at financing the acquisition of vehicles and heavy machinery (A Semana).

Business & Economy

In Cape Verde on November 25, 2010 at 7:36 pm

BUILDING OF THE WEEK

A render of a possible future development in the Praia Negra area of the Capeverdean capital (Tecnicil).

ECONOMY

The Executive Board of the International Monetary Fund (IMF) approved a 15-month Policy Support Instrument (PSI) for Cape Verde. The PSI for Cape Verde aims to consolidate macroeconomic stability, and achieve sustained broad-based growth. The authorities’ program will build on the macroeconomic success and structural reforms of the previous PSI supported program, and will help maintain macroeconomic discipline (The Financial).

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POWER

The Kingdom of Morocco will provide one million Euros in financing for Praia’s electricity distribution system. This is one of the results of the visit the country’s State Secretary of Foreign Affairs and Cooperation made to Cape Verde this week (A Semana).

Angola Business News

In Angola on November 25, 2010 at 7:35 pm

POLITICS

Oil-rich Angola announced a government reshuffle, which saw the dismissal of the ministers of foreign and urban affairs as well as the capital’s governor, state media reported (News24).

An activist held in the tiny oil-rich Angolan province of Cabinda has been freed after serving seven months in prison (News24).

INTERNATIONAL

Chinese Vice President Xi Jinping began a visit to oil-rich Angola, saying he believed relations with his country’s biggest African trading partner would be stepped up (BusinessDay).

The Import and Export Bank of China (Im& Ex Bank of China) will continue to support Angola’s post-war reconstruction of basic infrastructures on the basis of mutual trust to help establish a win-win situation between the two countries, Vice Governor of the bank Zhu Xinqiang said (Xinhua).

ECONOMY

Angola’s central bank capped foreign currency purchases by residents at $5,000 in a further attempt to reduce the African nation’s dependency on the dollar (Bloomberg).

Angola’s central bank cut its overnight lending rate by 3.94 percentage points, a month after the appointment of a new governor. The rate was lowered to 18 percent from 21.94 percent (Bloomberg).

BANKING

Angola’s commercial banks have until 2012 to value 80 percent of their capital in the local currency, the kwanza, as the central bank tries to reduce the country’s dependency on the dollar (Bloomberg).

FISH

Angolan public fishing sector company Peskwanza, located in the province of Kwanza Sul, is to be privatised, likely by 2011, the Minister for Agriculture, Rural Development and Fisheries (Macauhub).

MINING

Expenditure by mining companies in Angola may have a legally set limit in order to exercise a greater level of control, Angola’s Minister for Geology and Mining said (Macauhub).

Politics & Islands

In Cape Verde on November 18, 2010 at 7:58 pm

POLITICS

Carlos Veiga, Cape Verde’s centre-right opposition leader, will be visiting the Rotterdam- and Luxemburg-based Capeverdean communities this weekend, with the aim of fomenting support for his MpD party during the 2011 national elections in Cape Verde (AW).

INTERNATIONAL

Three major American banks have frozen the accounts of diplomatic missions of sixteen African countries in the United States on suspicions of money laundering, terrorism and other illicit activities. Cape Verde, as well as Angola and Mozambique, is among them. The Cape Verdean government has expressed shock at the move, which, from its point of view, is a violation of the Vienna Convention (A Semana).

China is currently in 11th place on Cape Verde’s import index, as opposed to ten years ago, when it occupied 40th place. These numbers lead economist Paulino Dias to believe that the Asian country could become the archipelago’s “main trade partner” (A Semana).

Following last week’s  successfull Cape Verde Business and Investment Seminar in Rotterdam, the city’s Chamber of Commerce is again hosting a business event related to Cape Verde. On November 26th local businessmen wil be informed about business opportunities on Sal island, as a follow up of a Dutch business mission that visited the island late september 2010 (AW).

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SAL

15-year-old Dutch sailor Laura Dekker is making a solo trip around the world, and stopped on the island of Sal, to rest up and refuel her yacht (A Semana).

The final leg in the world windsurfing championship is currently under way on the island of Sal. Athletes finally made their way to the water in Fontona, the alternative found for the usual spot, Ponta Preta, where the lack of wind and waves put the final stage in the circuit in check (A Semana).

SAO VICENTE

National Police and Judiciary Police officers are carrying out plainclothes patrols in Mindelo neighborhoods considered to be experiencing critical levels of delinquency and violence. The announcement was made on the same day in which a review of the police’s violence and crime reduction plan indicated a 18% to 19% reduction in crimes against people and property in 2009 (A Semana).

The third phase of the Mindelo Sanitary Plan has been concluded, and will be officially unveiled. The project encompasses a new sewer network, which was extended by 20 kilometers, and five new pumping stations (A Semana).

Business & Economy

In Cape Verde on November 18, 2010 at 7:58 pm

BUILDING OF THE WEEK

The BAI bulding for downtown Praia (Sogei).

ECONOMY

Cape Verde currently registers a 53,268,000-escudo trade deficit, according to figures from the National Statistics Institute (INE) (A Semana).

The 14th edition of the International Cape Verde Trade Fair (FIC), believed to be the largest ever, opened its doors November 17 (A Semana).

The 14th International Fair of Cape Verde (FIC) features approximately 50 Portuguese companies, constituting the largest participation ever from that country (AW).

The European Commission (EC) has approved the donation of a donation of 9 million euros to Cape Verde under the terms of the “Flex Vulnerability” scheme (Macauhub).

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BANKING

Portuguese commercial bank Banco Espírito Santo (BES) has launched a €50 million line of credit to finance exports to Cape Verde (A Semana).

Banco Espírito Santo (BES) Cabo Verde is due open its first branch on the Cape Verdean archipelago in January 2011, on Sal Island (Macauhub).

PORTS

ENAPOR started the procurement process with the objective to select a contractor for the works relating to the implementation of the second phase of Praia’s port expansion (Dredging News Online).

TOURISM

The Hotel Guest Traffic Inquiry indicates that more than 97,000 tourists entered Cape Verde’s hotel establishments in the third quarter of 2010, representing a 17.5% increase over the same period last year (A Semana).

Angola Business News

In Angola on November 18, 2010 at 7:57 pm

ECONOMY

Angola, Africa’s second-biggest oil producer, is expected to achieve an economic-growth rate of 7.6 percent next year, boosted by an expanding non-oil industry, Finance Minister Carlos Alberto Lopes said (Bloomberg).

But according to the IMF, Angola’s economy will expand just 2.5 percent this year, less than forecast by the government, as oil production slips and the government cuts back on spending (Bloomberg).

Angola’s government plans to spend 4 trillion kwanza ($43.4 billion) next year, according to budget plans to be debated by parliament (Bloomberg).

OIL

India is keen to source more crude oil from Angola on firm basis, and has also expressed interest in acquiring oil and gas assets in that country (The Hindu Business Line).

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TELECOMS

The Angolan minister of Telecommunications and Information Technologies, José Carvalho da Rocha, said in Luanda the first phase of installation of fibre optic system, nationwide, will be concluded by 2011, with interconnection of the capitals of the country’s 18 provinces (ANGOP).

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INVESTMENT

German automotive group Mercedes Benz plans to invest US$200 million in construction of a factory in the Angolan capital, Luanda, said the chairman of Autostar, Jörg Nührmann (Macauhub).

MEDIA

The Union of Angolan Journalists said it is worried by a recent rise in violence against reporters after a journalist was murdered and two others attacked in the last three months (AFP).

 

Politics & Islands

In Cape Verde on November 12, 2010 at 10:20 am

POLITICS

During the ground-breaking ceremony for the expansion and modernization of Vale dos Cavaleiros sea port, Prime Minister José Maria Neves affirmed that Cape Verde is changing with the modernization of its infrastructures. According to the premier, the government remains determined to transform Cape Verde into a modern and competitive country with low unemployment, a goal that requires the modernization and construction of infrastructures (A Semana).

INTERNATIONAL

The Dutch city of Rotterdam, home to a vibrant 17.000 strong Capeverdean community, hosted a highly successfull Cape Verde Business and Music Event on 5 and 6 November. Up to 300 Capeverdean and Dutch businessmen met at a Cape Verde Investment seminar at the Rotterdam Chamber of Commerce. The latter had organised the event in conjunction with Cabo Verde Investimentos, the Cape Verde Investment Agency. The Director of Cabo Verde Investimentos, Rui Cardoso-Santos, described the event as “very succesfull”.

Dozens of Capeverdean businessmen had travelled to Rotterdam, among which Sal based top entrepreneur Gualberto do Rosario, several bankers from Caixa and BCA as well as a wide range of real estate developers.

Saturday night was danced away at the prestigous (and soldout) De Doelen concert hall, where a fine line of Capeverdean artists showed their talents, starring among others a knock out Mayra Andrade (Atlantico Weekly).

CULTURE

“O testamento do Senhor Napumoceno” and” A ilha dos Escravos ” were among the films that were shown in London, at a film festival celebrating 35 years of independence for Portuguese-speaking African countries (AW).

BOA VISTA

The “Safe Tourism” project, which began to be implemented three months ago on the island of Boa Vista, has resulted in a considerable reduction in crime against tourists, especially on the island’s beaches. The affirmation comes from the National Police sub-chief on the island, Viriato Baptista, in whose opinion the project has helped bring tranquility and discipline to the busiest beaches, which had been characterized by frequent assaults and muggings targeting tourists (A Semana).

SAL

SOS Tartarugas on the island of Sal is recruiting new volunteers for the protection of turtles next year (Turtle Conservation Jobs).

SANTO ANTAO

A slave registry book is among the most interesting items on display in the exhibition “National Historical Archive Collection of Documents on the Island of Santo Antão: from administration to the economy and aspects of daily life, 1856-1957” (A Semana).

SAO VICENTE

São Vicente mayor Isaura Gomes has requested to suspend her mandate at the helm of the São Vicente municipal chamber for a period of six months, due to health related issues (A Semana).

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Business & Economy

In Cape Verde on November 12, 2010 at 10:20 am

BUILDING OF THE WEEK

Picture of a recently completed development on Sal, the Corallo appartment block (Imobrisa).

ECONOMY

Remittances from Cape Verdean émigrés to their home country are expected to total approximately US$ 144 million in 2010, almost US$ 1 million less than in 2009, according to the World Bank (A Semana).

Macau and Cape Verde will sign an agreement to avoid double taxation and tax evasion, Macau secretary for Finance and Economy Francis Tam Pak Yuen said (Macau Daily Times).

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TELECOMS

The much-awaited second underwater fiber optic cable intended to improve Cape Verde’s connection with the rest of the world was tied down on Praia’s Quebra Canela beach. The US$ 50 million investment will increase the country’s communicational capacity, particularly in terms of the Internet (A Semana).

AVIATION

TACV Cabo Verde Airlines’ long-haul fleet, made up of two Boeing 757s, is aging, bringing its maintenance costs to considerable levels. One of the aircrafts has just returned from maintenance work in Germany that proved more lengthy than initially expected, as inspectors detected, among other defects, serious problems in the fuselage due to erosio. But the problem of the renovation of the TACV fleet will only be resolved after the 2011 elections (A Semana).

João Higino do Rosário Silva, Armindo Sousa and João Alberto Pereira, the administrators of TACV Cabo Verde Airlines between 2003 and 2006, have lost the compensation case they lodged against the carrier for the manner in which they were replaced by Gilles Filliatrault upon their exit from the company. The three appealed to the Supreme Court, which upheld the initial ruling (A Semana).

The Stefanina business group owes TACV Cabo Verde Airlines more than 600,000 Euros (some 66 million escudos) for some 40 charter flights carried out using the airline’s aircrafts from Italy to Cape Verde and vice-versa. 200,000 of the initial debt of 800,000 Euros was paid off following pressure from the airline (A Semana).

TRANSPORT

Cabo Verde Fast Ferry, the company responsible for the construction and operation of the hydrofoils Kriola and Liberdadi, has begun a campaign in Portugal aimed at promoting the purchase of its future bonds on the Cape Verde Stock Exchange (A Semana).

CV Fast Ferry‘s CEO Andy de Andrade told Atlantico Weekly that the first ferry will be shipped from Singapore late this month, arriving in Cape Verde between Christmas and New Year. CV Fast Ferry will be  operational on the Brava-Fogo-Praia-Maio route within a couple of days of the arrival of the Kriola (Atlantico Weekly).

TOURISM

The Independent newspaper published a traveller’s guide for Cape Verde. The isolated, volcanic archipelago offers an adventurous take on the tropical island experience. Read how the reporte, Aisling Irwin, explores the options (Independent).

Angola Business News

In Angola on November 12, 2010 at 10:19 am

POLITICS

Angola is celebrating 35 years of independence after banishing its long chapter of civil war to the history books and becoming one of the world’s top oil producers, but is still divided by a huge wealth gap (Mail & Guardian).

ECONOMY

Angola, Africa’s second-biggest oil producer, cut its benchmark rediscount rate by five percentage points, a month after the appointment of a new governor of the southern African nation’s central bank (Bloomberg).

The Angolan minister of Geology, Mining and Industry Joaquim David stressed the country’s commitment to diversified industry in the coming days, with capacity to respond to domestic and foreign market’s needs (ANGOP).

BANKING

Bank of China Ltd is considering taking a stake in Portugal’s third largest listed bank Banco BPI or its Angolan operation BFA, a top Bank of China official said (Reuters).

Portugal’s Millenium bcp bank signed a memorandum of understanding with Industrial and Commercial Bank of China (ICBC) for preferential reciprocal use of networks in different business sectors and cooperation on various levels (Macauhub).

The African Investment Bank (BAI) was among the 1,000 best firms of the world, being the 24th at the level of the African continent and the first one in Angola in the year 2010 (ANGOP).

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OIL

France’s Total, which gets a third of its oil and gas from Africa, expects its Angloan offshore Pazlor field to begin producing oil by the fourth quarter of 2011 (Reuters).

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Cape Verde politics & islands

In Cape Verde on November 4, 2010 at 10:03 pm

BUILDING OF THE WEEK

Render  of the Sambala Resort for Santiago (Sambala Developments).

ELECTIONS

An MGF Research poll for the month of October forecasts a victory for the PAICV in the 2011 legislative elections, with the current governing party preferred by 38.5% of prospective voters, against 20.6% for the MpD and 2% for the UCID. In comparison with the month of July, all of the parties lost points and the percentage of voters who claimed to undecided rose from 23.5% to 32.4% (A Semana).

Carlos Veiga, the leader of opposition party MpD, told party militants and sympathizers on the island of Santo Antão that the campaign for the 2011 legislative elections “is the toughest political battle the party will ever have fought in its history” (A Semana).

INTERNATIONAL

A summit is slated to take place before the end of this year in Mindelo to “create” the region of Macaronesia, in the presence of the prime ministers of Cape Verde, Portugal and Spain and the presidents of the regional governments of the Canary Islands, the Azores and Madeira (A Semana).

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DIASPORA

Angolans of Cape Verdean descent are increasingly seeking to obtain their ancestors’ nationality, according to information revealed to A Semana Online by Cape Verde’s consul general in Luanda, José António Delgado.

SAL

The island of Sal will finally saw its dream of having a hospital come true. The facility cost some 345 million escudos and has the dimensions of a regional hospital. The ribbon-cutting ceremony was presided over by Prime Minister José Maria Neves (A Semana).

SANTIAGO

The Minister of State and Health, Basilio Ramos said that the new Maternity Centre and the Centre for Consultations at the Hospital Agostinho Neto (HAN), in Praia, should become operational later this year (Inforpress).

Cape Verde business & economy

In Cape Verde on November 4, 2010 at 10:03 pm

ECONOMY

Rwanda, Cape Verde, and Zambia were among the 10 economies worldwide that most improved the ease of doing business for local firms in the past year. Rwanda moved up 12 places in the global rankings, while Cape Verde and Zambia rose 10 and eight spots, respectively (Visao News).

POWER

The second and last photovoltaic solar power array built by the Portuguese company Martifer in Cape Verde, a project budgeted at 19 million euros with an installed potential of 5 megawatts, was inaugurated in Praia (Visao News).

REAL ESTATE

The Resort Group Plc’s flagship five-star development, the Dunas Beach Resort and Spa, is under construction on the west coast of Sal Island where work has begun on the first properties scheduled for completion next summer. It is being managed by the world’s largest resort hotel group, Sol Meliá, which reported that many of the seven single-storey detached five-bedroom, four-bathroom beachfront villas have already been snapped up by investors (Fly2letgo).

TRANSPORT

Render of one of the two vessels nearing completion for Cape Verde Fast Ferry, coming soon to an island near you…

TOURISM

The Independent newspaper published a traveller’s guide for Cape Verde. The isolated, volcanic archipelago offers an adventurous take on the tropical island experience. Read how the reporte, Aisling Irwin, explores the options (Independent).

Cape Verde is one of the favorite destinations of Portuguese during the winter months. For this year’s winter season, the packages offered by one of Portugal’s tourist agencies are nearly all sold out, as the country’s residents seek to flee from the cold and rain and enjoy Cape Verde’s sunshine and mild climate (A Semana).

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Angola Business News

In Angola on November 4, 2010 at 9:54 pm

ECONOMY

Angola aims to open its stock exchange after inflation falls to single digits from about 13 percent now, Oil Minister Jose Botelho de Vasconcelos said at an energy conference in New Delhi (Reuters).

Angola attracted over US$2 billion in foreign direct investment (FDI) between January and September of this year, despite the world financial crisis, the coordinator of Angola’s National Private Investment Agency (ANIP) said in London (Macauhub).

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OIL

France’s Total, which gets a third of its oil and gas from Africa, expects its Angloan offshore Pazlor field to begin producing oil by the fourth quarter of 2011 (Reuters).

Indian state-run explorer Oil and Natural Gas Corp is examining a proposal to buy U.S. energy major Exxon Mobil’s holding in an oil block in Angola (Reuters).

Angola’s oil output is likely to reach 2.2 million barrels per day by 2012 from about 1.9 million bpd now (Reuters).

Petrobras has announced a new discovery at the Cabaça Sudeste-2 well located in water 470m deep about 100 km off the Angolan coast (Macauhub).

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TOURISM

Angola’s tourism sector grew by more than 300 percent between 2002 and 2009, in terms of visitor arrivals. In 2002, when the civil war ended, the country received 91,000 tourists and statistics issued on 27 September last for 2009 showed that that figure had risen to 365,000 tourists (Macauhub).