News from Cape Verde, Angola & Mozambique

Archive for December, 2010|Monthly archive page

Politics & Islands

In Cape Verde on December 16, 2010 at 8:55 pm

ELECTIONS

As of December 3, the last day prior to the February legislative elections in which voter registration was possible, a total of 309,617 Cape Verdeans had registered to vote – 271,971 in Cape Verde itself, and 37,644 abroad (A Semana).

Presidential candidate David Hopffer Almada has launched his own website, in Portuguese alas.

PAICV and UCID have already decided who will be leading their list for São Vicente during the 2011 legislative elections: Filomena Martins and António Monteiro, respectively. The MpD is contemplating Jorge Santos to head theirs (AW).

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INTERNATIONAL

Cape Verde has been chosen to hold the chairmanship and secretariat of the Summit of Macaronesian Archipelagoes. The first summit, which was considered historic by various of its participants, was aimed mainly at creating a space for political coordination and cooperation for development among the archipelagoes of Cape Verde, the Canary Islands, the Azores and Madeira (A Semana).

LAW ENFORCEMENT

Some 50 metric tons of cocaine circulate every year through Africa, according to a report from the Sahelo-Saharan Geopolitical and Strategic Observatory (OSGS). In the report, Cape Verde is listed as one of the West African countries in which drug seizures have increased the most (A Semana).

From now on, all of the shipping containers arriving in Praia undergo X-ray scans in order to control all of the merchandise coming into the capital city. At the moment, the country is in a position “to prevent the entry of arms,” given that its ports and international airports all have scanners and weapon and explosives detectors (A Semana).

BOA VISTA

The women of Boa Vista have fewer employment opportunities than men, according to a study ordered by the Organization of Women of Cape Verde (OMCV) and the Cape Verdean Institute for Gender Equality and Equity (ICIEG). The study, carried out nearly one year ago, encompassed the areas of João Galego, Barraca and Sal-Rei (A Semana).

The systematic power outages that have plagued Boa Vista over the past several weeks are punishing the island’s economy, according to merchants and business owners in the restaurant and hotel/real-estate sectors, with large quantities of rotten food products thrown away and the flight of tourists to large-scale hotels (A Semana).

SAL

The re-opening of the Djad’Sal Hotel on the island of Sal was scheduled for Wednesday, December 15, but the hotel’s doors remain closed more than two months after activities ceased (A Semana).

Business & Economy

In Cape Verde on December 16, 2010 at 8:55 pm

ECONOMY

The government of Cape Verde has set up a fund of 100 million Cape Verdean escudos to support the internationalisation of the country’s companies, the chairman of Cabo Verde Investimentos, Carlos Rocha said in Praia (Macauhub).

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AVIATION

Passenger traffic in Cape Verde’s airports was 19.4% higher in November of this year than during the same month in 2009. The volume of domestic passengers rose 24.4%, while international passenger traffic was up 14.2% (A Semana).

On 13 December, the EU Council of Ministers authorised the signature of an aviation agreement between the EU and Cape Verde. The agreement was initiated in July, and will replace the clauses that do not comply with EU law that appear in bilateral air agreements between Cape Verde and several member states (Belgium, Germany, Italy, the Netherlands, Portugal, Romania, Spain and the United Kingdom). Thanks to the agreement, all EU airline companies will now have the possibility of offering connections to Cape Verde from these eight countries (Europolitics).

FISHING

20 of Cape Verde’s fishing vessels are now equipped with the Satellite Vessel Monitoring System (VMS), according to the director of the Department of Fishing, Adalberto Vieira (A Semana).

TELECOMS

Internet service has been slow in Cape Verde for more than a week, and sometimes stops altogether for minutes at a time. Users have complained, but net service provider Cabo Verde Multimédia affirms that it has “not detected any problem” on the network (A Semana).

UTILITIES

Cape Verde’s electricity and water company Electra is undergoing restructuring with a view to its being privatised in 2011, said Cape Verde’s prime minister, José Maria Neves, cited by the Cape Verdean press (Macauhub).

Danish wind turbine manufacturer Vestas has won an order for turbines with total capacity of 25.5 megawatts for a project in Cape Verde (Reuters).

SPLIT SECOND POLL

Angola Business News

In Angola on December 16, 2010 at 8:54 pm

BUILDING OF THE WEEK

Render of the new Luanda Medical Centre (Source: Skyscrapercity).

INTERNATIONAL

Angola and South Africa signed five bilateral agreements during Angolan President Jose Eduardo dos Santos’s first state visit to South Africa (Mail & Guardian).

Angola eased visa restrictions by offering multiple-entry visas to South African businesses to enter commercial ventures in Angola (BusinessDay).

South Africa and Angola took a step away from decades of friction by signing an energy deal during the first state visit of Angola’s long-standing leader to South Africa. South Africa is looking for new sources of oil to help power its economy and has eyed Angola – Africa’s second-biggest oil producer – as a potential new supplier (News24).

South Africa’s trade and industry department and Business Unity South Africa have organised a business round table to discuss investment opportunities in Angola. Representatives are expected from most sectors, including mining, oil and gas, finance, infrastructure and construction, agriculture and fisheries, transport and tourism, pharmaceuticals and ICT/telecommunication (Mail & Guardian).

ECONOMY

The Development Bank of Southern Africa Ltd. may triple investment in Angola to $3 billion, South African Trade and Industry Minister Rob Davies said (Bloomberg).

The Angolan economy is expected to see average annual growth of 7.4 percent over the next five years, with a maximum of 8.5 percent in 2012 and minimum of 6.4 percent in 2015, according to projections from the Economist Intelligence Unit (EIU), of The Economist group (Macauhub).

AVIATION

Sonair, an airline providing transport to the oil industry, was certified as an air carrier by the Angolan National Civil Aviation Institute (Inavic) (Macauhub).

TAAG has grounded its fleet of Boeing 777 aircraft due to lack of maintenance (Macauhub).

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BANKING

Angola’s banking sector will undergo some consolidation in the next five years, involving small financial institutions, said Vitor Ribeirinho, head of audit at KPMG in Portugal and Angola (Bloomberg).

OIL

Angola will ship at least 48 crude cargoes in February, according to the preliminary loading plan (Bloomberg).

Angolan President Jose Eduardo dos Santos said in South Africa the country is open to finding new partners to help build a refinery at Lobito on the country’s Atlantic coast (Bloomberg).

Politics & Islands

In Cape Verde on December 9, 2010 at 6:47 pm

ELECTIONS

Political parties and coalitions will have from December 18 to 28 to present their candidates for the February 6 legislative elections in the country’s various electoral circles. The determination is part of the electoral calendar published in Wednesday’s edition of the Official State Bulletin, and is the result of an agreement reached by the National Elections Commission, government representatives and Cape Verde’s political formations, the PAICV, the MpD, the UCID, the PTS and the PSD (A Semana).

SPLIT SECOND POLL

INTERNATIONAL

Cape Verde has been under the careful watch of the United States of America since last year, according to the secret American diplomatic files released this week by the site Wikileaks. Washington, D.C., according to the documents to which A Semana has had access, ordered its agents and diplomats to investigate the archipelago’s propensity for terrorism and drug trafficking. Based on their findings, they were asked to elaborate a data base featuring biographical information, bank account numbers, credit card numbers, travel records, working hours, telephone contacts and e-mail addresses of leaders and individuals with connections to Cape Verde. For the full story see A Semana and for a reaction from the US Embassy on Cape Verde see here.

The Cape Verde Jewish Heritage Project has received powerful Washington backing for efforts to restore Sephardic cemeteries on the island chain, with US Congressman Barney Frank among those attending a benefit for the group last week (Jerusalem Post).

For more info on the Cape Verde Jewish Heritage Project take a look at their website.

SAL

Prime Minister José Maria Neves and Minister of Internal Administration Lívio Lopes presided in Sal over the launch of  the “Safe Tourism” project and the inauguration of the National Police Station (AW).

Business & Economy

In Cape Verde on December 9, 2010 at 6:45 pm

BUILDING OF THE WEEK

The Triangle project for Calhao on Sao Vicente Island

ECONOMY

The executive directors of the International Monetary Fund, who recently carried out a mission to Cape Verde, congratulated the country’s authorities for its “strong macroeconomic performance” and for the progress made toward achieving the Millennium Development Goals (A Semana).

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EXPORT

Approximately half a ton of fresh fish was exported from the Cova de Inglesa complex, on the island of São Vicente, on a direct flight to Portuguese capital Lisbon. The event was “historic,” according to the director of the Department of Fishing, because it was the first lot of fish from the complex to be exported, by air, to Europe (A Semana).

SPLIT SECOND POLLS

Angola Business News

In Angola on December 9, 2010 at 6:42 pm

ECONOMY

The Angolan Reserve Bank (BNA) in 2011 will become a stronger and vigilant institution, and better able to interact with the market, thus guaranteeing the sustainability and robustness of the national financial system (ANGOP).

INTERNATIONAL

South African businesses are being advised to exploit renewed political ties with Angola to make the most of lucrative investment opportunities in the former war-torn country. The EIU’s Edward George said: “It takes a certain type of business to make it in Angola. You need to have a long-term vision, plenty of money and have the right partners. More than anything you need to do things the ‘Angolan’ way” (BusinessReport).

Santoro Finance – Prestação de Serviços last week bought almost 700,000 shares in Portuguese bank BPI for around 986,000 euros, thus adding to the shares it already owned, the company said in a regulatory filing. With these acquisition, the company owned by Angolan businesswoman, and daughter of the Angolan president, Isabel dos Santos, now has a 9.88 percent stake in Banco BPI (Macauhub).

AVIATION

Lonrho Plc, an investment holding company with infrastructure assets in 17 African countries, will begin operating Angola’s first privately owned commercial airline, with daily flights within the next week (Bloomberg).

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FASHION

Fashion Business Angola, the biggest fashion event in Africa to be held in the Angola capital, Luanda will bring together on 9-12 December over 35 fashion designers and 60 models from Africa, Europe and America in a symbiosis with businessmen (ANGOP).

OIL

Indian state-run explorer Oil and Natural Gas Corp has bid for a 25-percent stake that the U.S. energy major Exxon Mobil owns in an Angolan offshore oil block (Reuters).

PORTS

The construction of Cabinda Porto records enormous progress with the conclusion of its quay (ANGOP).

Politics & Islands

In Cape Verde on December 4, 2010 at 12:55 pm

POLITICS

The date for Cape Verde’s parliamentary elections has been set by President Pedro Pires for February 6th 2011.

Diplomat Alice Ferreira dos Santos has replaced Arnaldo Lopes as the director of the Department of Consular Affairs and Treaties in the Ministry of Foreign Affairs. The substitution appears to be the Ministry’s response to a complaint lodged by the governing PAICV against Lopes, whom they suspect of involvement in a “conspiracy” with opposition party MpD regarding the registration of Cape Verdean voters in the diaspora (A Semana).

INTERNATIONAL

Three municipalities in the African island nation of Cape Verde have signed agreements with a preservation group toward maintaining Jewish cemeteries (Jerusalem Post).

BOA VISTA

At 3:00 pm Saturday, November 27, an aircraft with 96 passengers on board was “hit” by a flock of birds, damaging the Boeing 737-800’s motor and forcing it to carry out an emergency landing at Rabil International Airport on the island of Boa Vista. The simulated situation was part of an exercise aimed at testing the airport’s response capacity in the case of an accident (A Semana).

BRAVA

Brava now has near-total coverage in terms of its water and electricity networks, according to Mayor Camilo Gonçalves (A Semana).

SAL

The results of the first phase in expansion work on Palmeira sea port, on the island of Sal, were unveiled by Prime Minister José Maria Neves. The project is being executed in two phases and encompasses investments on the order of 47 million Euros, financed by the European Investment Bank (A Semana).

SANTO ANTAO

The government of Cape Verde is set to launch tenders for the construction of dams on the island of Santo Antão, the island’s delegate for the Ministry of the Environment, Rural Development and Marine Resources announced (Macauhub).

Santo Antão’s Post-Harvest Inspection Center, located in the city of Porto Novo, has yet to become operational due to a lack of interest on the part of the private sector. The tender for the operation of the center has yet to be the object of a single bid (A Semana).

Business & Economy

In Cape Verde on December 4, 2010 at 12:54 pm

ECONOMY

Cape Verde should improve its level of competitiveness in order to take better advantage of existing opportunities within the context of the international crisis, Bank of Cape Verde governor Carlos Burgo said during the presentation of the annual report on economic perspectives in Africa (A Semana).

AVIATION

TACV Cabo Verde Airlines intends to buy another airplane to increase its fleet, the head of Department of Marketing and Business Communication, Carlos Carvalho announced (AW).

Several European tour operators are setting up extra flights to Cape Verde this northern winter season as the archipelago is becoming more popular among tourists than expected (Afrol).

BANKING

SISP, the entity that operates Cape Verde’s Vinti4 credit and debit card and ATM network, has received the PCI-DSS international payment system security certificate (A Semana).

The United Nations Organisation for Industrial Development (UNIDO/France), promised to create a risk capital firm in Cape Verde in early 2012, to support small and medium-sized enterprises in the country (AW).

Geocapital, the stakeholding company linked to Macau gaming magnate Stanley Ho, is due to start the process of integrating the banks it has been acquiring in Portuguese-speaking African countries. The first banks to become part of the network would be Banco da África Ocidental, of Guinea Bissau and Cape Verde’s Caixa Económica (Macauhub).

TOURISM

Yes, tourism is on the rise in Cape Verde. Luckily, the inland areas and huge swaths of coastline remain untouched. The increase in tourism has made it easier for eco-tourists to get to Cape Verde (there are more flights than ever before). The infrastructure — or lack thereof — assures eco-adventurers that there are plenty of sparsely inhabited, relatively untouched places to wander through (Mother Nature Network).

TRANSPORT

The hydrofoil Kriola was handed over to its owners, Cabo Verde Fast Ferry. The first of two high-speed vessels built in Singapore, the boat is scheduled to arrive in Cape Verde between December 25 and 29, three days after which it will make its maiden Praia-Fogo-Brava voyage (A Semana).

Angola Business News

In Angola on December 4, 2010 at 12:53 pm

BUILDING OF THE WEEK

The construction of a new headquarters for the Cabinda Gulf Oil Company Limited (Cabgoc), a subsidiary of US group Chevron, “demonstrates  the company’s focus on Angola” (Macauhub).

ECONOMY

Angola’s imports and exports will continue to grow in the near future, even if a reasonable level of replacement of imports with national products is achieved, Angola’s transport Minsiter said (Macauhub).

AGRI

South Korea’s deputy Foreign minister, Kim Jae-Shin, reiterated his country’s availability to continue helping to relaunch the Angolan agriculture, through the financing of specific projects and technical training of personnel (Angop).

BANKING

Angola’s Finance Minister, Carlos Alberto Lopes, said in Luanda that the government planned to implement measures to make public banks more “robust” and competitive (Macauhub).

OIL

Angola, the second largest crude producer in sub-Sahara Africa, has gaps in its 2008 oil accounts amounting to billions of dollars and millions of barrels, according to a London-based anti-corruption group (Bloomberg).

OPEC is unlikely to change its production quota when it meets at the end of next week, said Jose Maria Botelho de Vasconcelos, Angola’s Minister of Petroleum. The members of the Organization of Petroleum Exporting Countries “feel” oil at $80 to $85 a barrel is a “comfortable price” and will probably keep the group’s output targets unchanged at their meeting on Dec. 11 in Quito, Ecuador (Bloomberg).

Angola may resume the sale of oil exploration licenses next year, said Deputy Oil Minister Anibal Octavio da Silva (Bloomberg).

PORTS

With the increase of trade relations with the Portuguese Speaking Countries Community (CPLP) and the successful exploration of cross opportunities, the movement of goods at Angolan ports may increase, by 2015, to over five million tonnes (ANGOP).

The time needed for customs processing at the port of Luanda this year dropped from 80 to 28 days, the chairman of the port’s management company, Francisco Venâncio said (Macauhub).

TELECOMS

Angolan mobile operator Movicel plans to invest US$1 billion over the next four years on projects to expand and modernise its services and train staff (Macauhub).