AfDB disburses USD500-million for renewable energy in Africa

The African Development Bank (AfDB) has approved a loan of USD500-million for Africa’s electrification through renewable energy. The Energy Inclusion Facility (EIF) will distribute the loan among major project promoters and off-grid suppliers across the continent. According to the pan-African financial institution, USD100-million will go to off-grid providers to enable them to expand their services, especially in rural areas where people are often not connected to the national electricity grid. The rest of the loan, USD400-million, is intended to support major projects. It will thus benefit independent power producers (IPPs), who develop projects of less than 25 MW, and who require an investment of around USD30-million.

Source: Energy Mix Report


Angola partners with Finland to improve ICT sector

The Angolan telecoms minister, José Carvalho Da Rocha, and the Finnish communications minister, Sanna Marin, have agreed to collaborate in broadband and information and communications technologies. The document was signed during a working visit to Helsinki by an Angolan delegation led by the minister. According to José Carvalho Da Rocha, “the challenge of the new Angola is to provide quality and affordable services, to build the infrastructure that will connect cities with optical fibre - this service has already reached about 65% of the country - and to develop a space program to cover the territory by satellite.”

Source: Ecofin Agency


World Bank approves USD100-million for digital transformation in rural Benin

The World Bank announces a new disbursement of USD100-million to accelerate digital transformation in rural areas in the Republic of Benin. The project is designed to make broadband internet and digital solutions more accessible in the focus areas. The institution said this will improve the efficiency of selected value-chains, ease financial inclusion and access to markets. The digital rural program will consolidate the activity of more than 1.2 million small farmers who cultivate rice, corn, shea and vegetables through improved access to financial services and information. It will “contribute to increasing the productivity and competitiveness of two key growth sectors namely agriculture and ICT,” World Bank noted.

Source: Ecofin Agency


Maroc Telecom completes 100% acquisition of Tigo Chad

Telecom operator Maroc Telecom it has completed the full acquisition of Tigo Chad from Millicom International Cellular (MIC). According to Abdeslam Ahizoune, chairman of the management board of Maroc Telecom, the acquisition is another step forward in expanding across high-potential international markets. It aims to consolidate the company’s strategic position in the telecom segment in Africa. Mr. Ahizoune says the group will use its expertise to ensure the long-term development of new technologies in Chad. But despite this strong vision for the country, Maroc Telecom could face difficulties on this market where access to the Internet and social networks has been blocked for more than a year.

Source: Ecofin Agency

Democratic Republic of Congo

Konnect Africa plans further expansion

Konnect Africa, the African arm of Eutelsat, sent a delegation to DR Congo, its objective is to explore expansion possibilities. During its three-day working visit, the delegation exchanged views with business partners on market competition, strengthening activities and knowledge sharing. Through this visit, Konnect Africa wants to ensure it can count on its partners to facilitate access to broadband Internet for a greater number of Congolese, thus ensuring a return on its investment. “Congo is a large country, but unfortunately it does not have broadband Internet everywhere. And our objective is to cover the entire territory within twelve to thirteen months,” said VP Béatrice Beau.

Source: Ecofin Agency


South African Conco to develop 10MW solar power plant in Eswatini

Eswatini (formerly Swaziland) will develop a 10 MW solar power plant to be installed by the South African company Consolidated Infrastructure Group (Conco). The project will cost USD16-million and will reduce the country’s dependence on its supplier Eskom, South Africa’s electricity distribution company. The Kingdom of Eswatini wants to reduce its dependence on South Africa and Mozambique for electricity supply. In order to do so, the country has recently signed a contract with the South African company Conco for the construction of a 10 MW solar power plant. The Eswatini currently has 60 MW to feed the entire kingdom. However, it wants to focus on renewable energies to satisfy at least half of the demand by 2030.

Source: Energy Mix Report


East Africa Metals executes JV to develop and operate deposits in Ethiopia

TSX-listed East Africa Metals has announced has executed a definitive Share Purchase Agreement and Joint Venture Contract with Silk Road Resources Investments. The agreement pertains to the development and operation of the Adyabo Project’s Mato Bula and Da Tambuk deposits located in the Tigray region of the Federal Republic of Ethiopia. In finalising the terms of the transaction described in the binding letter of intent, the company has agreed to transfer to Tibet Huayu Mining, 70% of the company’s equity interest in its Ethiopian subsidiary company, Tigray Resources (100% owner of East Africa’s Adyabo Project).

Source: Mining Review Africa


Eni receives new exploration and production license in offshore Ghana

Eni (70%) and its partner Vitol (30%) have been awarded rights to Block WB03, located in the medium deep waters of the prolific Tano Basin, offshore Ghana. This result allows Eni to further consolidate its presence in the Country. Eni will be the Operator of the license and besides Vitol the Joint Venture will include the Ghana National Petroleum Corporation (GNPC) and a local registered Company that will be identified during the phase of contract finalisation. The Contract award is subject to approval from the Authorities. This award comes as an outcome of Ghana’s first international competitive bid round, in which 5 Blocks have been put on offer in water depths ranging from 100 to 4,400 m.

Source: Africa Business Communities


World Bank supports Ghana transform and diversify its economy for sustainable jobs

Ghana is to transform and diversify its economy by promoting private investment and firm growth in the non-resource base sectors through an integrated program to build the country’s competitiveness and deliver sustainable jobs under the Ghana Economic Transformation Project (GETP). The USD200-million funded project from the International Development Association (IDA) was approved by the World Bank Board of Executive Directors. The GETP will support improvements in the business environment and build capacity for investment attraction and retention as well as spatial development such as Special Economic Zones (SEZs) to address constraints to access industrial land.

Source: Africa Business Communities

Ivory Coast

IronRidge Resources continues to gather momentum in Côte d’Ivoire

IronRidge Resources, the African focussed minerals exploration company, has provided an exploration update for its portfolio of projects in Côte d’Ivoire, West Africa. Commenting on the company’s latest progress, Vincent Mascolo, CEO of IronRidge, says: “We are pleased to report that field programmes to continue to gather momentum within our Côte d’Ivoire exploration portfolio. "Detailed face mapping and channel sampling of 145 primaries ‘hard-rock’ artisanal mining pits over a 16 km strike will provide valuable insights into gold mineralised structures where intensely, steep dipping sheared and brecciated quartz vein zones have been mapped at the Zaranou Gold Project.

Source: Mining Review Africa

Ivory Coast

Perseus secures cash to advance development of Yaouré

Dual-listed gold miner Perseus Mining has secured a USD150-million revolving cash advance facility which will in due course help fund the development of its third gold mine Yaouré in Côte d’Ivoire. The cash will also be used for general corporate purposes, including the refinancing of USD31.5-million of existing project loans. The consortium of three international banks that have provided Perseus with the USD150-million revolving cash advance facility is comprised of Macquarie Bank from Australia, Nedbank from South Africa and Société Générale of France. Perseus will continue to hedge the sale price of its gold production in line with its long-stated and applied hedging policy of no more than 30% of projected gold production in any given year.

Source: Mining Review Africa

Ivory Coast

Orange to pump over USD300-million in expansion project

Orange Côte d’Ivoire plans to invest XOF180-billion, the equivalent of about USD312-million, to upgrade its network and set new services, this year and the next. According to MD Mamadou Bamba, a priority is to increase the Internet speed, through “the extension of 4G coverage that has become essential.” The company also plans banking and energy services and hoped to “get the banking license from the central bank in June in order to start microcredit from 2020 with Orange Bank.” In 2018, the company reported a turnover of XOF538-billion, roughly the same result as the previous year. For this year, Mamadou Bamba says, turnover should increase by 2%.

Source: Ecofin Agency


Madagascar set to construct 3 solar power plants

The government of Madagascar is set to construct three photovoltaic solar power plants, following a partnership agreement signed between them and Tryba Energy, a French company over the project. Vonjy Adriamanga, Madagascar’s Minister of Energy, Water and Hydraucarbons and signatory to the agreement, stated that accelerating electrification and increasing energy production were two strategic objectives in the government portfolio. According to the deal, the plants will be built over the next five years. They will be located in the Analamanga and Vakinakarata regions. The three projects are the first of a 50 MW portfolio Tryba intends to build in Madagascar. Within nine months, the plants are projected to 5 MW of electricity. The resulting product will be sold to local utility Jirama.

Source: Energy Mix Report


Lepidico and Desert Lion Energy get green light for transaction

TSXV-listed Namibian lithium developer Desert Lion Energy has announced it has obtained a final order from the Ontario Superior Court of Justice approving a statutory plan of arrangement under the Business Corporations Act (Ontario) pursuant to which a wholly-owned subsidiary of ASX-listed Lepidico will acquire all of the outstanding common shares of Desert Lion Energy. Pursuant to the Arrangement, holders of Common Shares will receive 5.4 Lepidico shares for each Common Share held. Receipt of the final order follows the annual and special meeting of holders of Common Shares held in Toronto, Canada, at which shareholders overwhelmingly approved the Arrangement.

Source: Mining Review Africa


NOTS Solar Lamps announces USD70-million investment in solar home systems manufacturing and retailing in Rwanda

NOTS Solar Lamps - an impact enterprise - and the Government of Rwanda have announced a landmark deal that will accelerate the provision of electricity to the lowest income families in the country. NOTS will invest USD70-million over five years in a manufacturing facility for Solar Home Systems (SHS) - the first in Africa - a microloan credit scheme and marketing infrastructure and programs. SHS is recognized by the United Nations and World Bank as an essential technology in the effort to provide rural families with electricity, ending energy poverty and enhancing life opportunities. NOTS is trialling a unique consumer sales and finance model in Rwanda.

Source: Africa Business Communities


Avenira sells interests in Baobab and Novaphos

ASX-listed Avenira is to sell its interests in the Baobab Phosphate Project and Novaphos to a consortium of its major shareholders and receive immediate funding support. Under the transaction, the company will receive cash consideration of USD3.0-million, and loan and director fees forgiveness of approximately USD1.2-million, for a total value of approximately USD4.2-million. Avenira to undertake, for nil consideration, a buy-back and capital reduction of all the existing shares and options held by the major shareholders. Pending completion of the sale the purchasers will provide loan funding of up to USD1.8-million to BMCC (the Avenira subsidiary which holds the Baobab Project).

Source: Mining Review Africa

Sierra Leone

IFC gets 10% stake in Sierra Rutile Limited for USD60-million

The International Finance Corporation (IFC) announces it is investing USD60-million to acquire 10% stake in mining company Sierra Rutile Limited. The financial institution in charge of the private sector in developing countries will make an initial investment of USD20-million to finance Sierra Rutile Limited's mining activities. Then, additional USD40 million will support the company’s expansion projects. Sierra Rutile Limited plans to double its rutile production and extend the life of its mine by 16 years. Remaining shares in Sierra Rutile are held by the Australian mining company Iluka Resources, the majority shareholder. During the 2018 FY, IFC invested more than USD23-billion in companies operating in emerging markets, including Africa.

Source: Ecofin Agency

West Africa

Global Technologies, Eutelsat in new power project in West Africa

Eutelsat Communications announced a contract with Global Technologies for C-band capacity on its Eutelsat 10A satellite to provide connectivity and communications for the West Africa Power Pool Project (WAPP). Global Technologies was awarded the telecommunications part of the project, and through this contract signature, will leverage the Eutelsat 10A satellite’s dedicated coverage of West Africa to monitor the main power distribution sites across the region. Thanks to Eutelsat’s satellite coverage of the region, Global Technologies will contribute to offering better access to power for millions of people by delivering telecom infrastructure to connect the WAPP countries.

Source: Africa Business Communities


Western Power Company set to build USD500-million hydro power station in Zambia

Western Power Company is scheduled to construct a hundred and eighty megawatts hydropower station at Ngonye falls in Sioma and Senanga districts at a total cost of 500 million United States dollars. In an Interview with ZANIS in Senanga, Company Technical Director Andy Flemming said the construction works will start in 2020 and the power station is targeting to benefit over 180,000 households in the province and across the country. Mr Flemming said so far the company is doing environment and impact assessment in the area and sensitising community members on the project. The Technical Director stated that during construction, it will employ 3 thousand people in the two districts and those will be engaged in skills training before they start working.

Source: Energy Mix Report


Zimbabwe to welcome new telecom operators

Gift Machengete, Director General of Postal and Telecommunications Regulatory Authority of Zimbabwe (POTRAZ), announces the upcoming entry of new telecom operators into the national market. On the sidelines of a Parliamentary Committee on Information and Communication Technology, Postal and Courier Services workshop held in Nyanga, Mr. Machengete announced Zimbabwe will soon license new mobile virtual network operators (MVNOs). Gift Machengete stated a legal framework has been put in place for that purpose. The aim is to enable more Zimbabweans to access quality telecom services regardless of whether they live in urban or rural areas.

Source: Ecofin Agency