Trade and Financial Services Round-Up.

  • 24 Feb 2024
  • 3 Mins Read
  • 〜 by Jewel Tete


World Bank, IMF charging Kenya 14.5pc interest — CoB

Controller of Budget Margaret Nyakang’o has flagged the cost of concessional loans taken up by the government over the years from lenders such as the International Monetary Fund (IMF) and the World Bank, saying they might be expensive in the long run. Dr Nyakang’o, in a presentation to the National Assembly Committee on Public Debt and Privatisation on the medium-term debt management strategy, said that in some cases, the interest is disguised as other charges, which raise the effective cost of a loan. “They baptise their interest…the bulk of which they call service charge, which nobody has ever fathomed,” said Dr Nyakang’o.

(Business Daily)



Tanzania court lifts beer importers’ ban in Zanzibar

The High Court in Tanzania on Thursday ruled in favour of three companies that had been denied importation licences by the Zanzibar Liquor Control Board (ZLCB), which has seen prices of alcohol skyrocket in the past few weeks following limited supply in the island. The court granted an injunction requested by Zanzibar Maritime and Mercantile International Co Ltd, One Stop Company Limited and Scotch Store Limited on February 19, restraining the ZLCB from interfering with their operations, suspending their permits or delaying their goods. “The court orders the ZLCB to issue import, distribution and sales licences to the applicants, pending hearing and final determination of this matter, including a pending appeal to Zanzibar Tourism and Heritage minister and related judicial review proceedings,” ordered Justice Rabia Hussein Mohammed.

(Business Daily)



Uganda to raise spending to $14 billion in new fiscal year

Uganda plans spending of Ush53.3 trillion ($13.74 billion) in the fiscal year that starts in July, up about one per cent on the current year’s spending, the Finance Ministry said on Tuesday. In the 2024/25 fiscal year, it plans to direct a greater share of development expenditure to improving roads, railways and infrastructure in the oil and gas sector, the ministry said in a document. Uganda aims to start commercial oil production in 2025, and oil sector investments have been one factor supporting economic growth alongside improved agricultural production. Uganda hopes to meet majority funding for the crude oil refinery project rather than sourcing it from private investors. The Finance Ministry forecasted the economy would expand 6.4 per cent in 2024/25 compared with six per cent in 2023/24, a similar 2024/25 projection to one given by the Finance Minister in September.




Rwanda Central Bank holds key rate, says might cut soon

Rwanda’s central bank on Thursday held its key interest rate at 7.5 percent, but its governor said it might cut the rate at one of its upcoming meetings if inflation dynamics continued to look positive. National Bank of Rwanda (NBR) Governor John Rwangombwa also said last year’s economic growth was expected to surpass an earlier projection of 6.2 percent. It is the second time in a row that the NBR has kept its key lending rate steady after raising it from 7.0 percent in August.

(Business Daily)



Ethiopia imports now account for 11pc of electricity on Kenya’s grid

Ethiopia now supplies 11 per cent of the electricity consumed by Kenyans daily, growing the Horn of Africa country’s stake in local power supply. Data from Kenya Power shows imports from Ethiopia Electric Power beat supply from thermal generators and solar to emerge as the fourth largest source of power supply. Geothermal retained its lead as the top source of electricity fed to the national grid with a share of 40 percent, followed by hydro, which contributed 24 per cent.

(Business Daily)



South Sudan asks Uganda for 100MW of power

South Sudan has asked Uganda to urgently consider supplying it with at least 100MW of electricity to boost its trade and industrialisation. Uganda’s State Minister for Energy, Okasaai Opolot, directed the Uganda Electricity Transmission Company Ltd (UETCL) to consider the deal and tap into South Sudan’s huge energy gap. Mr Okasaai was speaking at the commissioning of the 83MW Agago-Gulu transmission line and its associated sub-stations at Angagura Town Council in Pader District.

(Daily Monitor)