The lower oil price for about 19 months is benefiting the consumers, but creating a lot of problems for the global governments and business firms. Many banks and the US government forecast oil price above $40 a barrel this year. The oil price fell to below $30 during the past 19 months from $107 a barrel.
Guinness Nigeria, the country's second-biggest brewer is seeing a prolonged decline in sales and shares. The failing of the beer industry is part of a bigger national economic slowdown, whereas Nigeria, Africa's largest economy, seek out for loan to cover budget deficits.
Nigeria requires $3.5 billion funds to fill its $15 billion budget deficit. The falling oil prices are eroding revenues for the government. The largest economy in Africa is seeking $2.5 billion loan from the World Bank and $1 billion loan from ADB.
Alrosa PJSC has recorded 45 percent growth in sales for the fourth quarter of 2015. The rebound in the global diamonds market helped Alrosa post encouraging performance. The diamonds prices in the global market fell over 18 percent in 2015.
South African Reserve Bank (SARB) has announced increasing key interest rates by fifty basis points to 6.75% on Thursday. It has also slashed down growth forecast to 0.9%. SARB has increased the interest rates for the second time with an interval of weeks. However, the rate hike will influence the Banks’ expenses and banking industry may witness job cutting as cost minimization effort.
Nigeria as biggest economy of Africa is not able to meet demands for power supply for various reasons. Azura which generates power for Nigeria, is of view that for supply to increase the power transmission the grid must be expanded. And terms of the management of transmission grid which is run by a Canadian Company needs to be reviewed.
Anglo American's copper production and from retained operations rose 23 percent for the fourth quarter of 2015. The overall copper equivalent basis production for 2015 rose five percent when compared with 2014. Majority of metals including copper, coal, nickel and iron ore tumbled during the second half of 2015. The copper inventory of Anglo American was at 197,631 tons as on 2015.
Gold soared to three-month high early this week as investors switched over to safe have following the concerns about the global economy. The US Federal Reserve indicated a challenging global economy and this may not prevent it from raising interest rate. Gold price reached to $1,127.80 on 27 January and this propelled investors to book profits.
The summit will provide a platform for foreign investors, African companies, and regulators to meet, discuss relevant issues, and form relationships. East Africa has a strong potential to develop Islamic Finance because of the high demand for its services and products.
Childhood obesity has increased drastically worldwide and WHO seeks political involvement in handling the issue. About 48% of obese and overweight children aged 5 and below reportedly belong to Asia and Africa.
South African retail bank said the country's house price will decline in this year. Fitch Ratings also remarked South African residential property and mortgage markets outlook to weaken further facing microeconomic challenge.
The debt burden of South African farmers reached to over Rand 125 billion ($7.5 billion). The total debt of farmers was up 14 percent in 2015 to Rand117 billion. Economists alert that the prevailing slump in commodities markets, tighter monetary, fiscal policy, drought conditions and drop in value of Rand will trigger higher than expected inflation rate.
Technology startups in Africa may get $10 million funding in early 2016 as Silvertree Capital sees the rosy picture. Silvertree Internet Holdings is keen on scaling technology and commerce companies and has already invested $5 million in business building operations and acquisitions. South Africa, Nigeria and Kenya are favored the most among African countries.
The Kenyan government is hoping to control inflation rate with the support from lower oil prices. Lower oil prices are supporting the Kenya's economy as the growth rate is expected to be six percent in 2016 from 4.5 percent in 2015. Inflation rate breached the government's target band of 2.5 percent to 7.5 percent as it reached to eight percent.
After the cancellation of short-term credit facility from Citigroup, South African Airways is in the process of getting guarantee support from the government. South African Airways has had seven CEOs during the past three years. The National Treasury is exploring ways to restore financial support to the airline and will restructure the board as well.
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