Wednesday, February 8, 2023
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Ethiopia to launch a stock exchange with 50 firms

The Ethiopian Ministry of Finance, the Ethiopian Investment Holdings, and FSD Africa on Wednesday, signed a cooperation agreement to establish the Ethiopian Securities Exchange.

Some time ago, when the military government in Ethiopia was abolished, the Addis Ababa Share Dealing Group went along with it, and no capital markets existed in Ethiopia. In the late 1950s, there were attempts to reestablish a capital market, but the efforts didn’t last.

With Prime Minister Abiy Ahmed coming into power in 2018, the country is opening up more, seeking to pursue economic reforms and establish a stock exchange governing body.

Ethiopia is among the biggest five economies in sub-Saharan Africa and is the second-largest in terms of population; yet, it does not have a stock exchange. Now, it seems Ethiopia will finally have a functioning exchange, which will make it the 30th exchange on the continent.



Food Delivery Platform beU Bags Several Million Dollars in Seed Financing

beU delivery, a Chinese company focusing on Africa’s on-demand delivery market, has completed seed round financing worth several million dollars, led by Y Combinator and followed by Goodwater Capital and Ethiopian angel investor, Addis Alemayehou.

The newly raised funds will be used for market expansion and technological development.

Based in Beijing, XMT, Inc. is the operator of beU, a local services platform for the expansive African market. Since June of 2021, it has carried out a food delivery business in Ethiopia.

The company’s founder, Hao Zheng, said that as of December 31, 2021, beU’s market share had reached 56.2 percent, ranking first in the local market. In February 2022, eight months after the business started, beU’s market share had exceeded that of Deliver Addis, which stood in second place.

Regarding future development, Zheng said that beU plans to kick off A-round financing early next year, intending to raise about USD 12 million. In terms of market layout, the company plans to enter the Ugandan and Tanzanian markets this year, followed by 10 more African countries early next year.


Zimbabwe’s Foreign Affairs Minister, Frederick Shava (Amb.) denied reports that the southern African country was hiding Ethiopian genocide fugitive and former President, Mengistu Hailemariam.

In an exclusive interview with VOA Zimbabwe, Shava said: If the people of Ethiopia approach the government of Zimbabwe, appropriate steps will be taken by the Government of Zimbabwe in response to the request, to the legitimate request from the government of Ethiopia.

“We are not harboring Menguistu. We have allowed Mengistu to stay in Zimbabwe since he fell out with his people in Ethiopia. It was not a conspiracy, everybody knew he was coming here with his family, and there is no comparison with what you are asking about.”

This marks a shift in policy after Zimbabwe’s late former Information Minister, Tichaona Jokonya, told VOA in 2009 that Harare was not going to extradite Mengistu.

Jokonya said Mengistu came to Zimbabwe as a fugitive, as a refugee, and under the United Nations convention, a refugee is protected in the country he flies to.

Mengistu was sentenced to death in 2008 in absentia after fleeing to Zimbabwe in 1991 following his ouster. He was charged with genocide, homicide, illegal imprisonment and property seizures.



South Sudan set to receive ‘cheap electricity’ from Ethiopia

South Sudan will receive 500 megawatts of electricity from Ethiopia over the next six years following the construction of the controversial Grand Ethiopian Renaissance Dam (GERD), according to reports.

Addis Ababa will export 100 megawatts of electric power to Juba in an initial three-year period and then a further 400 megawatts over the next three years, according to Ethiopian Electric Power, a state-owned electric producer.

The agreement was part of a memorandum of understanding, signed on 5 May when a South Sudanese delegation visited Ethiopia, relating to the integration of electrical infrastructure.

“[Ethiopia is] aggressively working to supply electric power to its neighbors as part of regional integration,” said the chief of Ethiopian Electric Power, Anadualem Siaa, to the country’s state media.

Ethiopia also has agreements to sell electricity to Kenya and Tanzania. There are plans to supply power to Rwanda, the Somaliland region of Somalia, and Burundi.

 (The New Arab)

Horn in Brief

Shilling loses against dollar for first time in over two years

A combination of both internal and external factors fueling the depreciation of the shilling against the dollar, among which include increase in corporate demand for dollars and strengthening of the dollar.

The shilling has between April 2022 to date, depreciated against the dollar by three percent, according to Bank of Uganda.

This is the first time in over two years that the shilling is losing ground against the dollar.

Speaking in an interview early this week, Adam Mugume, the Bank of Uganda director of research, said a combination of both internal and external factors is fueling the depreciation.

Money markets were liquid on Wednesday with overnight yields at averages of 6.740 percent. The Bank of Uganda held a Shs400b two-year and 10-year Treasury Bond auctions and yields cleared at averages of 9.9 percent and 13.75 percent respectively.


Kenya agrees to Uganda’s fuel demands

Uganda is facing rapid increases in fuel prices, which, according to Ubos, increased by 30.3 percent by April. Uganda wants Kenya to increase supply quotas.

Energy State Minister, Sidronious Okaasai said Kenya has agreed to demands Uganda had made last month, among which include increase in imported petroleum quotas and ensuring the security of fuel products destined for Uganda.

The revelation comes on the back of a meeting in Nairobi, Kenya on May 17 in which a delegation led by Okaasai, together with Irene Bateebe, the Energy Ministry permanent secretary and Rev. John Tukwasiibwe, the commissioner of petroleum supply, discussed concerns with Kenya’s Energy Cabinet Secretary, Monica Juma and other officials that Uganda is particularly seeking to find solutions, amid a fuel crisis.

In a phone discussion yesterday, Okaasai, who declined to get into details of the discussion before sending a formal report to Museveni, said the President had deployed them to discuss the security of petroleum supplies from Kenya, noting that they were compiling a report that is expected to be discussed at a Cabinet level.


Somalia releases nearly USD 10 mln seized from UAE plane four years ago

The Somali government has released USD 9.6 million it seized from a United Arab Emirates plane in Mogadishu four years ago, a step aimed at mending relations that have been stuck at a low point ever since.

“The money has been released and it is on its way to the Emirates,” Somali Deputy Information Minister, Abdirahman Yusuf Al-Adala told VOA Somali.

Other reliable government sources said Somali Prime Minister, Mohamed Hussein Roble, leading a delegation, flew to Dubai on Wednesday to deliver the money in person.

The money was returned three days after Somali lawmakers elected a new president, Hassan Sheikh Mohamud, replacing Roble’s political foe, Mohammed Abdullahi Mohamed. The new President has been sworn in but has not yet taken control of the government and it appears Roble acted independently.

The money was seized in April 2018, when Somalia’s National Intelligence and Security Agency seized three suitcases at Mogadishu’s international airport from a Boeing 737/700 operated by the UAE’s Royal Jet Airline. The suitcases contained USD 9.6 million in cash.


CRDB Proposes Dividend Jump of 64 Per Cent

The shareholders of CRDB Bank have all reasons to smile this weekend as the board proposed a dividend increase of 64 percent for 2021. The increase, one of the highest, rose from 22 in 2020 to 36 in 2021, but is subject for approval by the annual general meeting (AGM) – the shareholders themselves.

The proposed dividend increase was due to the lender’s continuing stellar performance, where pre-tax profit rose to 387 billion from 236 billion in 2020.

The Bank Managing Director, Abdulmajid Nsekela said yesterday the AGM would also be held digitally as a “hybrid meeting” to provide opportunities for more shareholders to participate as not all can travel to Arusha.

“Based on the experience we gained on the 26th AGM, which was held on the first time in both ways – (virtual and physical) last year, same method will be used on Saturday,” Nsekela told journalists in Arusha yesterday.

A number of agendas will be discussed during this year’s meeting, which includes election of some board members, to appoint an auditor, and to discuss 2021 audited financial statement report.

(All African)


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