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Africa’s $4-billion cushion against Ukraine war shocks

Africa’s $4-billion cushion against Ukraine war shocks

AFREXIMBANK said it had set up a $4 billion trade finance programme to cushion economies and businesses on the continent against shocks arising from the war in Ukraine, that demand for financing already exceeds the amount. Cairo-headquartered Afreximbank said its Ukraine Crisis Adjustment Trade Financing Programme for Africa was approved by its board at the end of March. It said the fund would extend to areas such as oil and metals buy-back financing, commodity export revenue stabilisation and tourism revenue deficit financing. "Given the importance of both Russia and Ukraine as sources of crude oil and gas, raw materials and…
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Vaccine famine & its impact on African economies

Vaccine famine & its impact on African economies

AHUNNA EZIAKONWA WE are about to start a third year of living with COVID-19. The world’s humanity and solidarity are now at its further test – and yet the implications of the absence of solidarity keep us all in the boat of mutations, lockdowns, quarantines and delayed SDGs – denied prosperity for all. 2021 has unearthed a new expression of global inequity: “vaccine nationalism” – which itself competes high with socioeconomic downturns, jobless growth, the climate crisis, and rising poverty. As the pandemic ravages on, with Omicron on the scene, the futility of hoarding takes centre stage as even the…
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African economies place bet on bullet trains

African economies place bet on bullet trains

SETH ONYANGO, BIRD AFRICAN states are ramping up investment in rail infrastructure with billions of dollars earmarked for high-speed train networks to spur economic growth through the fast movement of people and goods. Currently, government-led spending is being retooled towards rail infrastructure upgrades to make the network greener, more efficient, reliable – and extremely fast. In 2018, Morocco trail-blazed for its African peers when it unveiled the continent’s first bullet train, LGV, with a top speed of up to 320 kph (199 mph) to connect the economic hubs of Tangier and Casablanca. Data from French railway firm SNCF shows the…
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