Resource-rich African countries are facing significant economic headwinds. Nigeria, Africa’s largest oil producer, depends on oil for over 90% of its foreign exchange earnings and three-quarters of government revenue. The slump in oil prices has adversely affected Nigeria’s economic prospects, pushing GDP growth into negative territory to -1.5% in 2016 before bouncing back to 1.4% in the 3rd quarter of 2017.
The Ruzizi III Hydropower Plant Project, which serves Burundi, the Democratic Republic of Congo, and Rwanda, could create about 135,200 total jobs over the project’s lifespan. It will increase the region’s access to electricity by 300% too. This project is important in the face of limited access to electricity in these countries: 10% in Burundi, 15% in the Democratic Republic of Congo and 30% in Rwanda.
The truth is that Africa is growing. Things look promising for the continent. The World Bank, in its 2018 Global Economic Prospects, says 6 of the world’s 10 fastest growing economies will be in Africa. This is good news. It probably firms up the narrative that Africa has moved from a ‘hopeless continent’ to a ‘hopeful continent’.
Kennedy, Johnson, (Nixon), Ford, Carter, Reagan, Bush Clinton, Bush, Obama, then, Trump. What would the great political interviewers of the past made of Donald Trump? I doubt many would have risked interviewing him for fear of being arrested (or worse).
Theresa May may have been a little confused when she received a round of applause from the remaining twenty-seven members of the EU in Brussels last evening. It appeared to me akin to the polite applause that is given on a reality TV show when the gallant loser is sent home.
The U.K. has lost the European Banking Authority to France and the European Medicines Agency to Netherlands, in one of the first concrete signs of Brexit as the country prepares to leave the European Union. Theresa May's government was defenseless to stop the relocation of these two prized European regulatory bodies, which were formerly secured by former Conservative prime ministers. The U.K. will have to build new administrative capability following Brexit.
The U.K. Political Landscape is heading for an earthquake. The politicization of Brexit which has turned the entire process into a party-political issue could bring about the “hard Brexit” that the Government appears to be trying to avoid.