Weekly news

28/04/2012 to 04/05/2012

Top Stories:                                                                                                          

 China, Russia resist West’s push to threaten Sudan, – Reuters Africa

 China & the African Supply Chain: Matt Baldiali – Resource Investor

 Akufo-Addo kicks against Chinese take-over of Ghanaian retail business – GhanaWeb (GHA)

 Chinese Investors Acquires 35% of Siat, Owners of Presco – This Day (NGA)

 Chinese firm to invest $100m in Uganda copper mine – New Times (RWA)

 South Sudan ‘agrees $8bn deal with China’ – BBC News

Politics                                                                                                                 

China makes a big impact in Kenya and EU members complain – CTA (BEL)
04/05/12
Some years ago, international trade experts sounded an alarm regarding growing ties between Africa and China. According to the Chinese Ministry of Commerce, this reached $126.9 billion in 2010, while trade volume rose by 30 per cent year-on-year during the first three-quarters of 201.

China calls for balanced position on Sudan-South Sudan issue – FOCAC
04/05/12
China has always maintained that the international community should take an “objective, impartial and balanced” stand in handling the issue concerning Sudan and South Sudan, said Chinese UN Ambassador Li Baodong here Wednesday.

China, Russia resist West’s push to threaten Sudan, – Reuters Africa
02/05/12
China and Russia are resisting a Western push for the U.N. Security Council to threaten Sudan and South Sudan with sanctions if the two countries fail to comply with demands to halt their escalating conflict, U.N. envoys said on Tuesday.

FM: China hopes Sudan and South Sudan resolve dispute through dialogue, consultation – FOCAC
02/05/12
The Foreign Ministry held a press conference on April 24, in which Liu Weimin, Foreign Ministry spokesman answered the reporters’ questions.

China-Africa Case Studies – Amb. David Shinn
02/05/12
As noted in the 30 April entry below, the South African Institute of International Affairs has produced in recent years a variety of excellent case studies concerning China’s relations with individual African countries.

Growing Crisis between Two Sudans – Amb. David Shinn
29/04/12
Since the independence of South Sudan, I have argued that full scale war would not resume between Sudan and South Sudan. While the conflict along the border has become more serious than I thought would be the case, I continue to believe the two countries will avoid all out war.

Economics                                                                                                            

China ‘picking up the pieces’ in Africa – FOCAC
02/05/12
Ethiopian Prime Minister Meles Zenawi insists China is now coming to the rescue of Africa after a failed Western ideology of the past three decades has let the continent down.

Africa’s broadening horizons – Financial Times (GBR)
01/05/12
Sub-Saharan Africa’s potential for economic growth is no longer a secret. Some estimates show Africa having as many middle class households as China by 2020. The region is expected to set the pace for global growth over the next five years, with economic expansion averaging 6 per cent per year. China increased Africa investment by almost 60 per cent last year, while India pledged to expand trade volume to $90bn (£56bn) by 2015.

One-year-old Ecobank Ghana China Desk generates over $100m capital inflows – Ghana Business News (GHA)
28/04/12
Ecobank Ghana’s China Desk has recorded over $100 million investments, a year after it was formally launched on April 11, 2011. Disclosing this at its Annual General Meeting (AGM) in Accra April 27, 2012, Managing Director of Ecobank Ghana Mr Samuel Ashitey Adjei described the inflows through the desk as encouraging.

Business                                                                                                               

China & the African Supply Chain: Matt Baldiali – Resource Investor (USA)
02/05/12
Ongoing inflation pressures and China’s investments in the African gold supply chain point to a higher gold price according to Matt Badiali of Stansberry & Associates. Bullion in all its forms belongs in every portfolio and when it comes to equities, investors have their choice of business models – dividend payers, prospect generators and royalty companies. In this Gold Report interview, Badiali outlines companies whose equities should catch up to the higher gold price.

Akufo-Addo kicks against Chinese take-over of Ghanaian retail business – GhanaWeb (GHA)
01/05/12
Nana Akufo-Addo, the presidential candidate of the New Patriotic Party, has expressed his opposition to the gradual take-over of the nation’s retail business by foreigners, especially the Chinese.

Chinese Investors Acquires 35% of Siat, Owners of Presco – This Day (NGA)
29/04/12
To achieve its expansion drive and create new markets, Siat Group, majority shareholder of Presco Oil Palm Plc, has entered into partnership with Singapore-based GMG Global Limited. GMG, which is a strategic trading platform of the Chinese chemical giant, Sinochem, paid Euros 192.5 million for 35 per cent of Siat group to become its strategic partner.

Finance and Banking

Chinese loan to benefit Ghanians: president – FOCAC
02/05/12
Ghanaian President John Evans Atta Mills on Tuesday promised Ghanaians more jobs and said the China Development Bank’s 3 billion U.S. dollars loan would help the job creation.

China offers South Sudan $8 bln in development funds – Reuters Africa
28/04/12
China has offered South Sudan $8 billion in development funds for road, hydropower, infrastructure and agriculture projects, South Sudan’s information minister told Reuters on Saturday.

South Sudan ‘agrees $8bn deal with China’ – BBC News (GBR)
28/04/12
Officials in South Sudan say China has agreed to loan it $8bn (£4.9bn) for major development projects. A government spokesman said funds would be used to build roads, bridges and telecom networks, and to develop agriculture and hydro-electric power.

Mining and Metals

Cost of new platinum mine to rise to R12bn – Wesizwe – Mining Weekly (ZAF)
04/05/12
The capital cost of building of the new Bakubung platinum mine, now under construction on the western limb of the Bushveld Complex, is expected to escalate to R12-billion. So says Wesizwe CEO Jianke Gao, who was speaking to Mining Weekly in Johannesburg through his interpreter and Wesizwe communications adviser Haiyao Zheng.

Chinese firm to invest $100m in Uganda copper mine – New Times (RWA)
04/05/12
China’s Gingko Energy Company plans to invest $100 million over a five-year period to revive production at Kilembe copper mine in western Uganda, the African country’s president’s office said.

Fortescue Seen Luring Anglo-to-Glencore on China Iron – Bloomberg
30/04/12
With Fortescue Metals Group Ltd. (FMG)’s earnings poised to almost triple, companies looking for a gateway to ship iron ore to China can still acquire the Australian producer at half the valuation it fetched a year ago.

Transport and Infrastructure

New $350 mln China-funded road in Uganda starts July – Reuters Africa
27/04/12
Construction of a $350-million Chinese-funded toll road linking Uganda’s only international airport and its capital Kampala will start in July after delays over a design review and land acquisition, a government official said on Friday.

Agriculture

Africa: A Fertile Land and Oasis of Culture – FOCAC
03/04/12
In November 2011, I had the opportunity to visit Ethiopia, Tanzania and Zimbabwe, traveling the African continent from north to south, appreciating the vast land from a cultural perspective. It was a journey of culture in the true sense. In my view, Africa is a fertile land and oasis of culture rather than a desert, as some have claimed.

China land grab claims ‘exaggerated’ – StanChart – Agrimoney (GBR)
02/04/12
Claims of Chinese “land grabs” in Africa, to grow food for importing, have been overstated – for now – although “this could be a longer term motivation”, Standard Chartered said.

Rwanda: New Chinese Tech to Boost Food Production – All Africa
30/04/12
It is new season and somewhere in Muhoza II sector, Musanze district, Obadiah, a maize farmer, is planting. “We have been growing crops on this plot for years but yields per harvest seem to diminish every other season because the soils are tired but we have no alternative,” he said.

Rwanda: Country Gets New Agricultural Centre – All Africa
29/04/12
The US$6 million project is a partnership between the Government of Rwanda and that of China.
Strategically located near the National University at Butare, in the Southern Province of Rwanda and a three hour drive from the capital Kigali, the China-Rwanda Agriculture Technology Demonstration Center is expected to spearhead modern technology and demonstration as a way of improving agricultural output.

Investment

Africa attracts foreign money – Business Day (ZAF)
04/05/12
Despite the rapid increase of investment into Africa the continent still lags behind India and China. Ernst & Young has just released a fascinating study – there seems to be growing confidence in Africa and the money is flowing in…

China’s need for defensive investment – Wall Street Journal (USA)
29/04/12
Earlier events in Libya shook up that nation. With around 50 significant China-funded projects at a total contract price of $18.8 billion in Libya alone, companies are facing enormous potential losses because of the conflict.

Ecobank Ghana’s China Desk Records Investments of $100 Million – Bloomberg
27/04/12
Ecobank Ghana Ltd. (EBG)’s China desk, which it set up last year, has generated $100 million worth of investment from the Asian nation in Ghana.

Defense

Chinese Defense Minister Meets Malawian Military Delegation – FOCAC
02/05/12
Defense Minister Liang Guanglie on Saturday met with a Malawian military delegation headed by Patrick V. Kachimera, permanent secretary of the Malawi Ministry of Defense.

Sudan’s Use of Chinese Arms Shows Beijing’s Balancing Act – Bloomberg
30/04/12
Sudanese jets fired rockets bearing Chinese characters during an air strike inside South Sudan just a week before that country’s president travelled to Beijing to strengthen ties and drum up economic support.

Environment

Chinese group to develop steam fields for Kenyan geothermal plant  – Engineering News (ZAF)
04/05/12
China’s Sinopec International Petroleum Service Corporation has been awarded a $139-million contract to develop steam fields for the Olkaria geothermal power plant.
Sinopec, China’s leading oil refiner, will develop the steam fields for the 280 MW Olkaria geothermal plant that Kenya is building at a cost of $1.2-billion.

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