SADC REGION | AUGUST 2021
This issue covers the period from 1 to 31 August 2021.
THE DEMOCRATIC REPUBLIC OF CONGO
11 Aug 2021
The Government of the DRC published its Regional Refugee Response Plan for 2021. The plan details the inter-agency response for Congolese refugees in neighbouring countries of asylum for these refugees.
21 August 2021
The United Nations recently warned that Madagascar may become the world's first `climate change famine' victim.
19 August 2021
The Ministry of Forestry and Natural Resources announced that, with support from the United Nations and Foreign, Commonwealth and Development Office, and in collaboration with other key stakeholders, it held a National Green Climate Conference (Green Conference) from 26 to 27 August 2021. The theme of the Green Conference was "Collective Responsibility for Enhanced Climate Action in Malawi" and it aimed to consolidate and promote climate action for sustainability.
1 August 2021
Mauritius became the first African country to launch a professional anti-money laundering digital learning solution. The Chartered Institute for Securities & Investment (CISI) and Mauritius Finance (MF) announced a key project in Mauritius to support the country's compliance with anti-money laundering and countering the financing of terrorism (AML/C FT) requirements alongside another project aiming to increase practitioner knowledge on integrity and ethical decision making. The not-for-profit global membership body, the CISI, and MF, the flagship organisation representing operators of the Financial Services Industry, have partnered to create an online cost-effective AML/CFT professional assessment to support licensees of the Financial Services Commission (FSC) and other regulatory bodies in Mauritius in meeting their training mandates.
12 August 2021
A call for projects to develop innovative business opportunities in the blue economy was launched by the French Embassy in collaboration with the Economic Development Board, the Mauritius Research and Innovation Council, and La Turbine, the business incubator of the ENL group, at Vivea Business Park, Moka. The call was made in the context of the celebration by France of the Blue Economy in the Indian Ocean 2021.
Key updates covered in this August 2021 edition include:
The publication of a Green Finance Taxonomy by South Africa's National Treasury
The notice by the South African Minister of Environment, Forestry and Fisheries informing the public of the Department's intention to repeal the Financial Provisioning Regulations, 2015 and to publish new Financial Provisioning Regulations pertaining to financial provisioning for reconnaissance, prospecting, exploration, mining or production operations. Members of the public are invited to submit comments on the proposed regulations on or before 6 October 2021.
The World Bank published its climate risk country profiles for the Democratic Republic of Congo, Lesotho, Malawi, Mauritius, Mozambique, Namibia, Seychelles, South Africa, eSwatini, Zimbabwe. Among other things, the reports consider the countries' climatology, key trends in respect of climate related disasters and the implications for the countries, the impact which climate change may have on key sectors, and each country's adaptation strategies.
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The Global Green Growth Institute released a brief which describes the significant role that the off-grid solar power sector could play in meeting Mozambique's universal electricity access goal, and provides a structured overview of the key barriers hindering private sector
participation for scaling up the sector. The brief concludes with a set of recommendations on priority actions to systematically address major inter-linked barriers.
5 August 2021
The International Organization for Migration (IOM) released the IOM Country Strategy for
Mozambique Report 2021 2023 which sets out programming plans for the 2021 to 2023 period, focused around three strategic priorities: Migration Governance, Promoting Resilience and Durable Solutions, and Humanitarian Preparedness and Response.
3 August 2021
Namibia is set to receive US$45.7 million from the German government to support green hydrogen research and the recently formed Green Hydrogen Council (GHC) of Namibia.
The announcement came during the handover of the country's second Harambee Prosperity Plan (HPP II) Q1 report. The HPP II seeks to
boost productivity, offer economic advancement, and develop infrastructure through investment into the country's green hydrogen and ammonium sectors.
10 August 2021
ReconAfrica reports significant steps forward in its ESG program which was officially launched in June 2021. It has been working in
collaboration with the Namibian government, conservancies, traditional authorities and communities on initiatives related to water, wildlife and reforestation as well as on going social initiatives. It has released a 60- day progress report with its progress on various ESG Indicators.
15 August 2021
The Plaine Hollandaise-Pasquire wetlands in the Praslin Islands, which cover a combined 7 hectares, have been steadily degrading due to human activities. The Terrestrial Restoration Action Society of Seychelles (TRASS), aims to rehabilitate the wetland, starting with restoring
the degraded foothills with anti-erosion measures and also by restoring the natural biodiversity of the wetlands by weeding out invasive plants and replacing them with native species. The project is funded by the Global Environment Facility through the Implementation of the Strategic Action Programme for the Protection of the Western
Indian Ocean from Land-Based Sources and Activities, executed under the Nairobi Convention. This initiative helps reduce land-based stresses by protecting critical habitats, improving water quality, and managing river flows.
1 August 2021
South Africa took a step towards establishing green finance as a viable option for investors with the recent publication of the Draft Green Finance Taxonomy by National Treasury. A green finance taxonomy is an official classification or catalogue that defines a minimum set of assets, projects, and sectors that are eligible to be defined as "green" in line with international best practice and national priorities. It can be used by investors, issuers, and other financial sector participants to track, monitor, and demonstrate the credentials of their green activities in a more confident and efficient way.
19 August 2021
The Department of Social Development had proposed a contentious centrally-managed public fund to provide retirement, survivor, disability and unemployment benefits. This proposal, as set out in the Green Paper on Comprehensive Social Security and Retirement Reform, would introduce a National Social Security Fund where all employers and employees will be obliged to contribute in, initially between 8% and 12% on qualifying earnings up to a certain limit.
However, the paper, which was the subject of much criticism, did not appear to have had formal political support and was therefore formally withdrawn on 31 August 2021.
27 August 2021
The Minister of Environment, Forestry and Fisheries published her intention to repeal the Financial Provisioning Regulations, 2015 published under NEMA (GN 1147) on 20 November 2015 and to make regulations pertaining to financial provisioning for reconnaissance, prospecting, exploration, mining or production operations. These Regulations have been widely debated and subject to various draft amendments since they were first published.
The public is invited to submit comments on the proposed regulations on or before 6 October 2021.
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Africa wide and other African jurisdiction
9 August 2021
What does the UN Climate Report mean for Africa? This report warned of more extreme weather in the coming years. According to Youba Sokona, vice-chair of the Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change (IPCC) "All of Africa, in general, is vulnerable, given the level of development. The entire continent is highly exposed to climate extremes, at a relatively high level of vulnerability, which amplifies the problems that the continent is experiencing, including poverty, limited infrastructure, conflicts and urbanization in development."
11 August 2021
The parliament of the Economic Community of West African States (ECOWAS) has moved to address the deficit of energy in the sub-region. To commence the process, the parliament's joint committee on energy and mines, industry and private sector, agriculture environment and natural resources and infrastructure met in Abidjan from 10 to 14 August 2021.
12 August 2021
A partnership has been launched to convene an International High Level Panel on Water Investment for Africa to drive global political mobilization and international engagement to narrow the water investment gap in Africa and meet the socioeconomic needs for water on the continent. The partners include the African Ministers' Council on Water, the United Nations Development Programme, United Nations Children's Fund, African Union Development Agency, African Development Bank, Global Centre on Adaptation and Global Water Partnership.
17 August 2021
Nigeria's Petroleum Industry Act, 2021 has officially been signed into law by H.E. President Muhammadu Buhari, ushering in a new wave of investment and positioning the country as a global energy competitor. The Act comprises a complete legislative restructuring of Nigeria's oil and gas sector, providing a comprehensive framework that emphasizes coherency and transparency. The Act is expected to enhance regulatory certainty and administrative efficiency in the country's oil and gas sector.
19 August 2021
In Uganda, a small tribe known as the Batwa people won a significant legal victory. The Ugandan Constitutional Court held that the Batwa people must be compensated for the loss of their ancestral lands following their eviction to make way for three national parks. The judgement is available here.
Egypt is seeking partners to invest in a US$2.5 billion initiative to build more than a dozen renewable energy-powered desalination plants by 2025, as the country tries to tackle looming water scarcity. As part of this project, the government intends to construct seventeen new plants that would run on solar and other green sources, with each built, owned and operated by Egypt's sovereign wealth fund in partnership with a group of local and foreign investors.
23 August 2021
With support from the International Finance Corporation (IFC), Kenya's Special Economic Zones Authority, launched a one-stop-shop web portal to boost communication, transparency, and service provision for current
and potential investors in special economic zones (SEZs), a pillar of the country's industrial policy. The web portal will assist the authority with adapting its investor outreach, retention, and after-care strategies to an interactive online platform, supporting investment, growth, and job creation in Kenya. SEZs are demarcated areas with unique rules of business. They provide private firms with quality, cost-effective, reliable infrastructure, efficient customs services, regulatory predictability, and even fiscal incentives. Kenya already has about 10 SEZs. Through SEZs, Kenya aims to boost competitiveness by ensuring regulatory and administrative predictability, quality industrial infrastructure and market access.
30 August 2021
The transitional government of Sudan launched a new national action plan to combat human trafficking in Sudan which is the primary transit country of migrants to Europe from the Horn of Africa. With the participation of Justice Minister Nasreldine Abdel Bari and European Union Ambassador to Sudan Robert van den Dool, the National Committee to Combat Human Trafficking (NCCT) inaugurated the National Action Plan for Combating Human Trafficking 2021-2023 in Sudan. Undersecretary Ministry of Justice and NCCT Head Siham Osman stated that the three-year plan aims to curb human trafficking through several programmes to reduce poverty and offer new options for migrants, refugees, and asylum seekers. Also, the plan will ensure better protection and shelter for the victims including the establishment of specialised prosecutor offices and courts, cross-border cooperation and access for victims of trafficking to legal aid to improve investigation and prosecution.
9 August 2021
The Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change (IPCC) released a flagship report, AR6 Climate Change 2021: The Physical Science Basis, which provides a high-level summary of the understanding of the current state of the climate, including how it is changing and the role of human influence, and the state of knowledge about possible climate futures, climate information relevant to regions and sectors, and limiting humaninduced climate change.
16 August 2021
The World Bank and partners announced a new global fund for cybersecurity. The new fund aims to better define and systematically roll out the cybersecurity development agenda, helping to ensure a more substantial reflection of cybersecurity considerations across World Bank programs and financing. The work program will support the development of global knowledge on cybersecurity solutions for low- and middle-income countries. It will fund country maturity assessments, offer technical assistance, and support training and capacity development for cybersecurity staff in World Bank client countries.
20 August 2021
UNICEF released a report entitled The Climate Crisis Is a Child Rights Crisis: Introducing the Children's Climate Risk Index, which indicates that almost half of the world's 2.2 billion children are at "extremely high risk" from the impacts of the climate crisis and pollution. The report calls for the inclusion of young people in climate negotiations including at the UN COP 26 summit in Glasgow in November this year.
27 August 2021
InfluenceMap released the Climate Funds: Are they Paris Aligned? report which found that most of the 723 climate themed investment funds investigated are misaligned with the goals of the Paris Agreement. A key finding of the research is the diverse terms used to describe climate-themed strategies listed in equity funds and the resulting difficulty of comparison between them.
31 August 2021
The WMO Atlas of Mortality and Economic Losses from Weather, Climate and Water Extremes (1970 2019) published the World Meteorological Organisation at the end of August provides that weather-related disasters have significantly increase over past 50 years. According to the report, a disaster related to a weather, climate or water hazard occurred every day on average over the past 50 years killing 115 people and causing US$ 202 million in losses daily.
The ESG Tracker SADC Region is compiled by lawyers based in our Johannesburg office.
Peter Leon Partner and Chair, Africa Group Johannesburg T+27 10 500 2620 [email protected]
Justine Sweet Consultant Environment T+27 10 500 2600 M+27 83 399 2618 [email protected]
Ernst Mller Senior Associate Johannesburg T+27 10 500 2628 M+44 7720 639 540 [email protected]
Amanda Hattingh Associate Johannesburg T+27 10 500 2634 M+27 79 425 4502 [email protected]
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