The Director of Social Affairs at the African Union Commission (AUC), Mme. Cisse Mariama Mohamed, said the AUC is working closely with the Africa Centres for Disease Control & Prevention (Africa CDC) to implement various initiatives in collaboration with Member States and stakeholders to improve the well-being of Africans citizens.
Held in Cairo, Egypt 29th July 2019, the Ordinary Session, themed “Increased Domestic Financing for Universal Health Coverage and Health Security for All African Citizens – Including Refugees, Returnees and Internally Displaced Persons”, is in the spirit of the African Union theme for 2019 “The Year of Refugees, Returnees and Internally Displaced Persons: Towards Durable Solutions to Forced Displacement in Africa”. It is being spearheaded by the AU Commission’s Department of Social Affairs.
“Some of the initiatives that the Department has implemented include the advocating for increased domestic financing for health as evident by the hosting of the Africa Leadership Meeting in Addis Ababa which called upon Head of States and relevant stakeholders in the health sector to increase financing for health through public and private partnerships”, she added.
The Director noted that the Department has led the development of scorecards on domestic financing for health, Malaria, Tuberculosis (TB) and CARMMA to serve as accountability frameworks in addressing health issues which are revised every year.
The overall objective of the STC-HPDC-3 is to undertake in-depth discussions around increased domestic financing for universal health coverage and health security, including refugees, returnees, internally displaced persons and often hard to reach population. Broad areas of deliberation will include health systems strengthening mechanisms, human resources for health, and investment in treatment of drug dependence among other things. This year’s edition of the STC-HPDC will also look into measures of diminishing the effects of forced displacement on refugees and internally displaced persons.
Speaking on behalf of the STC Chair, Dr. Francis Smart, Director of Policy Planning and Information, Ministry of Health and Sanitation Sierra Leone, applauded Member States for their collaborative solidarity to prioritize health care in Africa. He also called upon the stakeholders in the field of health care to make people mobility and its ripple effect on spread of disease an integral part of the UHC conversation in Africa.
Dr. Mohammed Gad, Chief Executive of the Egyptian Ambulance Authority and Supervisor of The Foreign Health Relations Departments, reiterated the theme of the STC by emphasizing the need for Member States to make basic health care services available to all their citizens. He concluded by recalling on the progress Egypt has made as a country through the 100 Million Healthy People Program which has saved the lives of about 1.3 million displaced persons living in Egypt.
Over three days, senior officials from the AU Member States will discuss papers on the Session’s theme and hold three parallel sectorial sessions with presentations and discussions on health, population and drug control respectively.
In addition, the meeting will consider the following reports; the Maternal, Newborn and Child Health Task Force, the working group of STC on population & Common Africa Position on Population, the nutrition task force, the Africa health stats and CARMMA score card, IMNCHN & CARMMA evaluation and the Africa CDC Report.
The Meeting will also deliberate on Draft Africa Common Position on Antimicrobial Resistance, Draft Declaration on Viral Hepatitis, the Free to Shine Campaign progress report, the Zero Malaria Start with Me Campaign report, the Next Steps for the Post Africa Leadership Meeting on Domestic Financing for Health, the Draft Revised AU Plan of Action on Drug Control and Crime Prevention (2019-2023), the Draft Implementation Report of the AU Plan of Action on Drug Control (2013-2017) (AUPA), the first Draft Pan-African Epidemiology Network on Drug Use Report (2016-2017), the outcome document of the continental consultation on Online Child Sexual Exploitation (OCSE) in Africa. The meeting will also prepare draft agenda and decisions of the Ministerial Meeting.
The Meeting is being attended by senior officials from ministries of health, population and drug control in the AU Member States, partners, AU Organs such as the Regional Economic Communities, Pan-African and International Organizations working in the areas of concern.
The African Development Bank’s innovative investment marketplace set up to accelerate investment into the continent, will convene for its second meeting from 11-13 November
Nigeria will feature significantly in the 2019 Africa Investment Forum scheduled to take place in Johannesburg, South Africa this November, business leaders and government heard at a roadshow event held in the capital Abuja.
Following the hugely successful inaugural edition held last year, the African Development Bank’s innovative investment marketplace set up to accelerate investment into the continent, will convene for its second meeting from 11-13 November.
The Nigerian roadshow, held 9th July, was organised by the Nigeria Country Department of the Bank in collaboration with the Africa Finance Corporation. It was attended by key industry players, including, policy makers and representatives of state governments.
Speaking at the event, Ekiti State Governor Dr. Kayode Fayemi emphasized the role of private capital to deliver the infrastructure required to grow Nigeria’s economy and provide jobs for millions of young Nigerians.
“With the support of the African Development Bank and the African Finance Corporation, and the quality of investors that attended the inaugural edition in South Africa last year, I am confident that if we put our best foot forward, we will receive significant funding commitment for investments across Nigeria and the continent,’’ Fayemi said.
Senior Bank Director for the Nigeria Country Office Ebrima Faal, highlighted Nigeria’s prominence during the 2018 Forum. Nigeria was very visible. Out of the 63 boardroom deals presented at the Forum, Nigeria had 5 deals worth $7 Billion. This represents 14.9% of the total deals accounted for on the continent, and 43% of the deals accounted for the region.
“The African Development Bank and its partners are excited to present you with … the only platform that allows you to instantly pitch and close monumental deals on the spot. We encourage you to engage early and wholesomely to be a part of re-writing Africa’s economic history,’’ he urged.
According to Africa Finance Corporation Senior Director Taiwo Adeniji, “building on the success recorded in 2018, it is expected that Nigeria will be a major participant at the 2019 Forum. The Africa Finance Corporation is keen to support Nigerian businesses across sectors to ensure effective project implementation to boost economic development.’’
The Nigeria roadshow included highlights and key lessons from the 2018 forum, project preparation guidelines as well as presentations on selected pipelines.
“We are now seeing positive momentum in building transparent and durable institutions to anchor the political economy, promote and support development of the private sector, in order to increase the pace, depth and spread of economic growth,’’ Faal said.
“When you put your forces together, you can achieve the critical mass to be solid player on the global scene,” African Development Bank’s Chief Economist and Vice President of Economic Governance & Knowledge Management Celestin Monga told journalists at a press conference ahead of the Bank’s Annual Meetings.
Equatorial Guinea will host the Bank’s 54th Annual Meeting, from 11-14 June 2019, under the theme ‘Regional integration for Africa’s economic prosperity.’ The Meetings will bring together about 2000 delegates. They provide a unique forum for governments, businesses, civil society, think tanks, academia, and the media worldwide, to dialogue on critical issues concerning Africa’s development.
Secretary-General of the Bank Vincent Nmehielle hosted the press event held at the Bank’s headquarters in Abidjan. Senior management in attendance included Vice-president, Private Sector, Infrastructure and Industrialization, Pierre Guislain; Vice President Corporate Services and Human Resources, Mateus Magala and Gauthier Bourlard from the Bank’s Resource Mobilization and Partnership Department.
In his opening remarks, Nmehielle explained that the 2019 Annual Meetings are an opportunity to show why regional integration is important. “Equatorial Guinea is one of the most developed countries in Africa, but not many people know that,” he added.
The meetings will include statutory sittings of the Governors and shareholders of the Bank, and a series of knowledge events, including discussions around the Africa Economic Outlook, one of the Bank’s flagship reports. A High-Level Presidential Dialogue on Boosting Africa’s Economic Integration will provide Heads of States an opportunity to discuss challenges and corrective measures to fast track Regional Integration.
Robust conversions on regional value chains in agriculture are on the meetings’ agenda.
“Trade is and will remain the main engine of growth for many of our countries. More than 60% of global trade now occurs in global value chains. We need to see that African economies are getting into global value chains, not just to process unprocessed raw commodities but transform goods creating value additions, creation jobs locally,” Monga noted.
Over 75 percent of Sub-Saharan African countries have a population of less than 25 million, and about half the countries have a gross domestic product (GDP) of less than US$10 billion in 2017 (nominal terms). Deeper market integration for goods, infrastructure services, and key factors to bring together the fragmented economies of Africa.
For Guislain, “Regional integration is part of our core mandate and our DNA. It has been since inception in 1964.” A borderless Africa is the foundation of a competitive continental market that could serve as a global business center, journalists’ heard.
On the Continental Free Trade Area, which came into force on May 30th, the Bank has provided the grounds to the African Union Commission to launch the Secretariat with close to $ 5 million.
Magala shared an update on the Compact Lusophone and how “it provides an opportunity to strengthen economies of countries that share a common language, history, and culture.” He also fielded a few questions from the Portuguese-speaking journalists from Guinea Bissau and Cabo Verde.
Gauthier Bourlard representing the Bank’s Resource Mobilization and Partnership Department provided an update on the African Development Fund (ADF) 15th replenishment. ADF, the concessional loan arm of the Bank, seeks to increase funding for fragile countries, focusing on cross cutting themes such as gender, governance, climate change and the private sector. The next round of negotiations with donor countries is slated for early July in Madagascar before a decision is made later in the year.
Twenty-eight journalists from twenty-one Africa countries attended the press conference, moderated by Dr. Victor Oladokun, the Bank’s Director of Communication and External Relations. The journalists are taking part in a three-day Sustainable Development Reporting Course, first of its kind at the Bank, organized in collaboration with the Thomson Reuters Foundation.
Investment into local content development needs to be channelled and supported by strong regulations
There’s so much excitement about where Angola’s energy sector is headed. Sergio Pugliese, a successful entrepreneur and oil executive, is really hyped and enthused about recent developments and future direction of his country’s energy sector. Angola is ranked second largest oil producing country in Sub-Saharan Africa and an OPEC member with an output of approximately 1.55 million barrels of oil per day and an estimated 17,904.5 million cubic feet of natural gas production.
Production levels in Angola are expected to soar by 2020 following the country’s restructuring, including the reorganization of the state oil company Sonangol. In addition to a drastic revision of Angola’s legislation related to oil and gas, the government’s intent is to spur growth in the sector, encouraging exploration in development areas, improving operation efficiencies, reducing taxes, empowering the private sector, and attracting investors. Since the 2017 elections, Angola’s oil and gas sector has been featured in numerous conferences aimed at linking top government officials with the global energy industry.
The African Energy Chamber (AEC), the continent’s voice for the ongoing change and progression in the African energy industry recently named Sergio Pugliese as the AEC’s President for Angola. The appointment will be the first of many to follow across the continent as the AEC guides local content development that will enable African companies to grow and take the lead in the development of their continent. In an official statement, Pugliese notes:
“It is with great sense of responsibility towards Angola and the African Energy Chamber that I am assuming this new function. Angola is reforming is very fast and the need to provide accurate information and guidance for investors doing business in Angola is growing”. Prior to being named the AEC’s President for Angola, Sergio Pugliese most recently worked with BP and Statoil as top executive before founding Angola-focused oil and gas services companies Motiva LDA and Amipha LDA.
The rapid change and reform in Angola’s oil sector since the 2017 election has caught the attention of many. Will this enhance Angola’s work towards attracting more investment into local content development?
Investment into local content development needs to be channelled and supported by strong regulations. As more foreign investors get into the market, the country is currently working on a new regulatory framework to promote the development of the Angolan content and build domestic capacities. At the moment, several pieces of legislation touch on local content and there is a definitive need to make our local content framework more efficient and competitive. A draft presidential decree on local content has been in the works this year and is expected for release and public consultation this month. The oil Industry is looking forward to the Angola Oil and Gas conference organised by Africa Oil and Power in Luanda from June 2nd to 4th. The President is going to unveil the government’s oil and gas agenda. As the largest oil lobby in Africa, we will be working closely with the government and the oil industry on this. The Oil industry and Angola needs a champion and we will be that champion.
There was an announcement this year by the Angolan Government that it will create a regulatory body for the hydrocarbons sector – What do you expect this move to encourage within the Angolan Oil and Gas sector?
The creation of the new Angola National Petroleum and Gas Agency (ANPG), officially launched through Presidential Decree 49/19 in February 2019, is one of the most significant reforms since 2017. Its pioneer Chairman is non-other that experienced oil and gas executive and former Secretary of State Paulino Jeronimo, who has earned a very good reputation within the industry following an impressive track record stretching over many decades.
More importantly, it will be acting as Angola’s national concessionaire for hydrocarbon licenses and be in charge of regulating the industry and implementing government policy. The creation of the agency is part of Angola’s efforts to streamline and overhaul the governance of its hydrocarbons sector. Up until now, state-owned Sonangol was responsible for such licensing activities. Setting up the ANPG puts Angola at par with best oil and gas industry practices, and is a positive move to promote good governance and transparency within the Angolan industry. We expect foreign investors and operators to respond very positively to this measure.
What strategies does Angola have to further encourage the financing of expansion of SME’s in its petroleum sector?
The government of Angola currently runs a number of programs, some of them, jointly funded with multilateral organizations which offer soft loans to SMEs in all sectors of the economy. These loans are accessible via state-owned banks but have especially since the 2014 financial crisis stringent criteria for access attached to them. The Africa Energy Chamber continues to advocate for such loans to be made available to local entrepreneurs who are likely to employ more people in good-paying jobs whenever they have access to the right kind of financing. In the near future, I will lead a delegation to Europe, America and other African countries to see what they have done right and will build more coalitions to help the Angolan sector.
Are there any specific local content projects that Angola will be highlighting?
I think the current approach by the Angolan government to encourage and strengthen local companies via tools such as offering them soft loans, rather than legislate them into projects is the best way of building local companies in a competitive manner. That is, they are more likely to be capable of competing with internationally active companies and hence ensuring their survival in the long-term.
What in your view are the common challenges in implementing strong local content policies in the Oil and Gas sector?
Some of the common challenges include the absence of capital, technology and deep industry know-how for local companies to carry out the high paying services in the industry. This eventually leads to local content being relegated to low paying and low jobs that do not in the long run help develop the kind of capacity needed to run the industry in the future with reduced dependence on foreign staff or capital.
What is the importance of working with local companies across the value chain?
Local companies are the ones that support the local economy and create the most jobs. Engaging, partnering and working with them promotes technology, skills and know-how transfers. It is also beneficial for robust national employment growth. More importantly for business perhaps, local companies are the ones with the deepest and most relevant knowledge of the local market environment, its dynamics and the way to do business. Setting up a joint venture with a local company or partnering with them has proven a very sustainable and profitable business strategy for many foreign investors. The Chamber will be pushing for more joint ventures and encourage a lot of technology and skill transfer. Local companies have to also do their best to meet the industry demands and standards.
How can this strengthen capacities and transfer know-how and increase local capability?
Exposing local companies to best international practices, be it on an operational or managerial level, is very beneficial. National oil companies have grown a lot this way, by having stakes in licenses operated by international oil companies, and acquiring de facto the technology, know-how and practices that they now use to operate their own blocks. This move wouldn’t have been made possible without their prior association with major IOCs and international oilfield services providers. The same thinking applies to engineering, procurement and construction, manufacturing and the overall value chain. Equatorial Guinea’s Minister Gabriel Obiang Lima has been very vocal about this and we will work with the Angolan oil sector to ensure this happens.
Given the highly technical and technological demands of the oil and gas industry, is the Angolan workforce ready to accommodate the growth of a local E&P industry?
Yes, certainly so. Similar to Nigeria’s experience, where the government created the right kind of enabling environment to spur the growth of local E&P companies, Angolan companies can do the same if provided the same opportunities. Nigeria can now boast of names like Oando, Sahara, Aiteo, Shoreline, Atlas Oranto and Seplat amongst others which are now respected brands in the region. Angolan banks have to develop capacity in terms of understanding E&P, be willing to lend to local players at reasonable rates and the government has to encourage joint ventures between Local and international companies. The Africa Energy Chamber strongly advocates for such measures to be taken.
What, in your view, is the most pressing problem for Angola’s energy sector?
Angola desperately needs more exploration, including in marginal fields to stem the declining oil production. This is currently being addressed by the government which set up a technical committee that includes IOCs and government stakeholders to discuss existing hindrances to investment in the sector. This committee is already bearing fruit with Total announcing that it will invest hundreds of millions into Angola, including towards the increasing of production in block 17. The government also set up an independent Petroleum and Gas agency which is tasked with action as a regulator in the industry and implementing government policy in the sector. The agency has already announced that it will carry out an auction for block licenses this year in an attempt to spur exploration in Angola.
Where do you see the greatest potential for Angola’s Oil and Gas sector in the future?
There is potential across the value chain. In upstream, our production has been decreasing for over a decade due to a lack of investment, especially in exploration. We are seeing the trend reversing now with several investment commitments from operators in the market. More importantly, perhaps, the rest of our value chain remains under-developed. Our midstream and downstream infrastructure needs billions of investment to connect existing and future fields to consumption centres, and to build the refineries, power plants, petrochemical plants and fertilizer plans who will be processing our future output of oil and gas.
What is your thought on what is considered an urgent need to develop a gas economy in order to fuel future electricity, enable renewables and support industrial development for the benefit of Angolans?
The major pillar that was needed to build our gas economy was the regulatory one, which has been passed last year. Presidential Decree No. 7/18 is the first law aimed at specifically regulating the prospection, research, evaluation, development, production and sale of natural gas in Angola. To date, only the Angola LNG Project had benefited from a special legal and tax framework. Before the passing of PD 7/18, the exploration and production of natural gas in Angola was subject to very broad principles only. These notably included making associated natural gas surplus available for free to Sonangol, and the possibility for oil companies to jointly-develop non-associated natural gas with Sonangol, with terms defined on a case-by-case basis. Sonangol was free to develop the non-associated gas discoveries on its own shall no agreement be reached with the oil company. Under PD 7/18, both Sonangol and oil companies have the rights to prospect, research, evaluate, develop, produce and sell natural gas in the international and domestic markets. More importantly, the decree provides for the possibility of specific and longer periods for natural gas exploration and production as compared with crude oil. Such periods can now all be extended so as to accommodate the particularities of developing a natural gas project.
However, and as experience has shown, the success of Angola’s gas economy will now rely on the creation of gas demand centres and the development of gas-consuming industries. These include power generation, petrochemicals and fertilizers, compressed and piped natural gas in the retail space, but also steel and cement. This is probably where the most urgent need currently lies as we want to make sure the future gas output will not be just exported internationally but used domestically to build industries and create jobs for Angolans.
With Africa been considered the last frontier, why does it seem to not have reached its full potential? What is causing this blockage in greater development? What role could Intra-Africa trade play in this regard?
Weak governance structures and lack of investment in exploration have so far prevented Africa from exploiting its full potential. This particularly applies to Angola. The crash in commodity prices in 2014 was just the ultimate blow to our industries who were, in fact, relying on weak foundations. Tough lessons have been learned over the past few years on the need to reform our legislative frameworks, provide better clarity to investors, and diversify our economies. Intra-African energy cooperation has a major role to play in this regards as it is able to unlock massive deals and projects. The case of Senegal and Mauritania who are developing the giant Tortue gas field, or of Equatorial Guinea and Cameroon who recently signed a unitization agreement for gas, are prime examples. There is so much to be achieved from a greater African energy dialogue in terms of transnational projects and exchange of commodities. In this regard, we believe that not only the private sector, but also and above all African national oil companies (NOCs) have a major role to play in driving that cooperation forward.
Could you introduce yourself to our international audience and the scope of your role as AEC’s President for Angola?
I moved back to Angola two decades ago after I completed my studies at Cambridge and the University of Adelaide from where I earned my MBA. This was the golden age of Angola’s oil and gas sector, so I naturally started working with major international oil companies such as Statoil and British Petroleum. This is where I got firsthand experience into the commercial, financial and technical aspects of operating producing oil blocks. I am a strong advocate of our local industry and have always been an entrepreneur at heart, so I eventually went on to set up Amipa LDA and Motiva LDA, two Angolan oil & gas services companies.
In my role at the Chamber, I intend to both facilitate the entry of new players and investors and ensure domestic capacities and capabilities are developed and good paying local jobs are created for Angolans. The reforms led by H.E. President Joao Lourenço are profoundly transforming our oil and gas industry by improving its business environment. This is generating tremendous interest from the international energy community and the network of partners the Chamber has. With over a decade of experience in the sector globally, I am able to bring them the kind of local and sector expertise they seek when coming to Angola. Under the leadership of its Chairman NJ Ayuk, the Chamber has been at the forefront of the most important and recent deals in Africa’s hydrocarbons sector and we truly look forward to bringing these deal-making abilities to Angola. We are going to be champions for Angola. Our country needs champions.
What will be the strategic importance of African Energy Chamber to the Angolan Oil and Gas sector?
The African Energy Chamber will be channelling global interest for Angola’s oil & gas sector, providing local knowledge on the market and advisory support for investors and local companies. More importantly and in line with our mandate to build African capacities, the Chamber will act as a catalyst for training Angola’s oil & gas workforce, build domestic capacity and advocate for an enabling environment. Low taxes, limited government, fair local content, fair fiscal frameworks, market-driven policies, incentives to drill, judicial security and respect for the rule of law will get us to a fairer and balance oil sector.
What advice do you have for potential foreign investors looking at Angola as well as your own AEC members?
A major advice is to carefully choose a local partner. Investors tend to think that with enough capital and experience they can make it. While this is not entirely false, tying-up with an Angolan partner or establishing cooperation with a local entity on the ground always gives a major boost to a new business, especially in its early years. Operating in Angola does come with a few challenges that can easily be overcome if an investor works with the right people and the credible and efficient local companies that know the market and how to get things done. We also tell investors to not just look at the upstream segment but consider opportunities across the value chain, be it in midstream, downstream, fabrication, services and supplies. A market like Angola which produces almost 1.5 million bpd offers considerable opportunities across the industry and anyone looking at Angola shouldn’t consider exploration and production as the only lucrative investment to be made here.
Where do you want to take the AEC in your tenure of President for Angola?
The AEC will become the entry door to Angola’s oil & gas sector. We want to ensure that there is an enabling environment for oil and gas investments. Oil companies must be given the incentives to invest but we are the oil industry also know we have an obligation to the Angolan people. We have to work with policymakers and implement strategies and solutions that will work in Africa. Look at Gabon’s leadership on the environment, Equatorial Guinea on Gas monetization, Ghana on building regulatory frameworks. Also, also look at Nigeria when it comes to empowering Africans. We are already receiving lots of queries from new investors wishing to enter the market, and having local representatives on the ground is positioning us as a strong advisor and facilitator for foreign investors, while being able to properly communicate what is happening on the ground to the international energy community. On the second hand, we also want to be building domestic capacity, both by training and skilling Angolans so they can take on additional responsibilities across the value chain, but also by bringing in more technology and best practices to our local companies so we contribute to boosting local content.
The African Development Bank Group (www.AfDB.org) hosted 11 sister institutions for the annual multilateral development bank (MDB) roundtable on trust funds and co-financing, held on 28-29 March, 2019.
The aim of the roundtable was to enhance benchmarking across the development finance institutions (DFIs), raise awareness of emerging innovative approaches to resource mobilisation and of new tools for cooperation, and to share institutional knowledge and best practices. Ultimately, its goal is to share the most efficient methods for mobilising resources towards the achievement of the Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs).
This year’s roundtable took stock of ongoing institutional reforms to the trust fund and co-financing environment in each MDB. Delegates noted the increased decentralisation of partnership and donor relation functions and outlined solutions to some of the challenges that such changes can bring. The group also discussed the role of developing countries in the establishment and management of the trust funds, and best practices in donor reporting. Roundtable sessions also considered blended finance and lessons learned in implementing European Commission (EC) funded projects, given the EC’s increasing influence on concessional resource flows, despite not being represented on the boards of most MDBs.
The World Bank’s director for trust funds and partner relations, Dirk Reinermann, led a dedicated session on the growing business of financial intermediary funds (FIFs), 25 of which the World Bank is currently trustee. The African Development Bank team provided a number of case studies during a session on de-risking tools to crowd in private sector investments in low-income countries, highlighting the work of the private sector credit enhancement facility (PSF) as well as its balance sheet optimisation work, which has helped to release headroom for further investment in fragile states.
Overall, the discussions raised the notion of ‘less is more’ given the increasing “bilateralization of multilateralism”, as one participant put it. Most MDBs prefer to scale up existing funds rather than proliferate the number of vehicles, although this remains a challenge. Ultimately, there was a consensus that the roundtable was a useful platform for working on common principles for donor communication, reporting and trust fund administration.
Co-chair of the event, Desire Vencatachellum, director of the resource mobilisation and partnerships department at the African Development Bank, said, “We must all deliver on our individual mandates while addressing complex global development issues, partnerships and alliances. This was a great opportunity for peer-to-peer exchanges of ideas and sharing best practices to address the common challenges we all seem to be facing”.
Akhil Patel of the European Bank for Reconstruction and Developmentnoted, “There’s real scope to take joint positions on certain themes and present more of a unified front in a number of areas, in addition to sharing ideas and solutions.”
Ilaria Caetani of the Asian Development Bank, who participated in the Roundtable for the first time, added, “My main takeaway from these 2 days has definitely been the sense of solidarity”.
Attendees included representatives of the World Bank, the International Finance Corporation, the European Bank for Reconstruction and Development, the Asian Development Bank, the Inter-American Development Bank, the International Fund for Agricultural Development, the Council of Europe Development Bank, the European Investment Bank, the International Monetary Fund and the Islamic Development Bank. The MDB membership group also comprises the Asia Infrastructure Investment Bank and the New Development Bank.
The African Energy Chamber congratulates Angola on becoming the sixth African country to join the Gas Exporting Countries Forum (GECF), after Nigeria and Equatorial Guinea
The GECF (www.GECF.org) has been at the forefront of promoting the use of natural gas as an affordable and sustainable fuel of choice for sustainable development. African countries rallying around the drive of Equatorial Guinea’s Mines and Hydrocarbon Minister, Gabriel Mbaga Obiang Lima’s drive to monetize gas and engage with OPEC (www.OPEC.org) and GECF is a step in the right direction.
“Angola has vast untapped gas reserves that have not yet been monetized.” said AEC Executive Chairman NJ Ayuk. “joining the GECF is a step in the right direction and in line with H.E. President João Lourenço blueprint for transformation, growth and boosting economic diversification by the monetization gas.”
Angola’s focus on gas is being backed by new legislation promoting the monetization of the country’s gas reserves. In May 2018, Angola passed Presidential Decree No. 7/18 (PD 7/18), indicating President Lourenço strong commitment to reform the country’s hydrocarbons sector and provide a boost to the gas industry. Presidential Decree No. 7/18 is the first law aimed at specifically regulating the prospection, research, evaluation, development, production and sale of natural gas in Angola.
“The Chamber welcomes the reforms in Angola and its commitment towards diversification and a market driven local content. This requires that government provides the necessary infrastructure and incentives that will enhance the productivity of labor and capital in the economy.” Ayuk continued. “The private sector has a role to play and there must be a change in its mindset, from commerce to industry”
The Chamber (EnergyChamber.org) welcomes these developments and salutes Angola on its efforts towards reforming its gas industry and deepening its engagement with international gas markets through Gas Exporting Countries Forum.
The Chamber and its members look forward to joining Angola’s leadership at the Angola Oil & Gas 2019 Conference & Exhibition to be held June 3-7, 2019 in Luanda under the patronage of H.E. President João Lourenço.
The International Monetary Fund (IMF), the Central Bank of Egypt (CBE) and the Government of Egypt will co-host a high-level conference in Cairo on May 5-6, 2018, on promoting higher economic growth and job creation in Egypt.
The aim of this event is to recognize the successes in macroeconomic stabilization that Egypt has achieved, and to help in building consensus among stakeholders around the reforms needed going forward to attain higher and more inclusive growth and create jobs sustainably to meet the needs of Egypt’s young and growing population. The conference will aim to shed light on global best practices and successful relevant experiences that can help enhance Egypt’s homegrown structural reform agenda and address its medium-term challenges.
The conference will bring together international and Egyptian high-level policymakers and other experts to exchange perspectives, and to reflect on successful international reform experience and how these could be relevant in the Egyptian context.
Key topics to be discussed at the conference will include: macroeconomic stabilization as the foundation for inclusive growth and job creation; successful reform strategies and lessons from other countries; and policies to foster inclusive private sector-led growth. The concluding session, in which a broad cross-section of representatives from civil society, academia and the private sector are expected to participate, will aim to draw implications for Egypt’s goal of higher, inclusive and more sustainable growth.
His Excellency Prime Minister of Egypt Sherif Ismail, IMF First Deputy Managing Director David Lipton, CBE Governor Tarek Amer and Egypt’s Minister of Finance Amr El Garhy will be among the speakers.