Items filtered by date: Friday, 08 February 2019
In what appears as a shake off of tensions around the general election, investors in Nigeria’s stock market on Thursday gained N228.1 billion as market capitalisation of equities rose to N11.722 trillion.
 
Anaylists had allayed fears that the market might have to wait till May, after the election, before recovering from the presumed political tensions that plunged it into sell-offs in December last year.
 
The market capitalisation fell below the N11tn mark from N11.72tn on December 31, 2018 but gained 1.98 per cent on Thursday, its best performance in 2019.
 
The All Share Index increased from 30,821.80 basis points on Wednesday to 31,433.49bps on Thursday.
 
Banking stocks topped both the traded stocks and value with United Bank for Africa Plc (136.8 million units), Zenith Bank (63.4 million units) and Access Bank Plc (44.4 million units) as top traded stocks by volume.
 
Zenith Bank (N1.5bn), GTB (N1.2bn) and UBA (N987.1m) were the top traded stocks by value.
 
Volume and value traded both increased by 21.8 as a total of 436.7 million shares worth N5.88bn exchanged hands in 4,047 deals while banking index, with 5.8 per cent increase on the back of gains in bellwethers, becoming the highest gainer.
 
Stock prices of Nestlé Nigeria Plc, Dangote Sugar Refinery Plc, Dangote Cement Plc and Lafarge Africa Plc recorded major appreciation as the consumer goods and industrial goods indices increased by 3.4 per cent and 1.5 per cent respectively.
 
 
Source: The Ripples
Published in Business
It has become an accepted premise among some South Africans that the current government is responsible for the troubles facing Eskom, whether it is the financial position of the utility being compromised by corruption or so-called policy sabotage when the government barred the company from building more power stations in the late 1990s.
 
This type of analysis makes sense on the face of it since there’s a clear line between cause (corruption, incompetence) and effect (the imminent collapse of Eskom, loadshedding).
 
The problem with clear-cut, emotionally satisfying answers is that they are often wrong. Nicholas Woode-Smith, an author and managing editor of the Rational Standard, has done an economic analysis of Eskom using principles from the Austrian school of economics.
 
It is clear from Woode-Smith’s work that the core problem of everything that is wrong with Eskom is its structure as a monopoly provider of electricity.
 
Eskom simply does not have the means to receive and interpret the vital market signals necessary to calculate what its electricity price should be.
 
When demand increases, because Eskom is a political entity, it cannot adjust prices accordingly to reflect this increased demand, and thus has to violate a fundamental law of economics.
 
If Eskom were allowed to adjust prices based on demand, sadly, it would still provide electricity inefficiently due to the lack of competition inherent in its legislated monopoly, but, at least it would then be able to ensure its own survival, albeit at the cost of consumers and the economy generally.
 
The situation as it is now, Eskom is harming both itself and the economy.
 
Corruption at Eskom didn’t start with Jacob Zuma or even in 1994. Back in 1984, the assistant chief accountant was caught embezzling R8 million.
 
There were blackouts too in the past due to an inability to match demand with supply. These and other problems led to the appointment of the De Villiers commission in 1984.
 
Eskom was always doomed to fail. It started failing long before the democratic era.
 
The fundamental reason why Eskom is doomed to fail is its structure as a state-owned, monopoly provider of electricity.
 
It is often claimed that if Eskom were to be privatised, the poor would suffer the most.
 
Well, that depends on whether you want them to suffer a little now or a lot more so in the future.
 
A market for electricity would introduce price competition, which, unlike Eskom’s political prices, would be market driven and would be sustainable.
 
Future consumers would not have to pay the price they do today.
 
It is worth remembering that we have had average annual increases in the electricity price of 12.46% since 2009.
 
Cumulatively speaking and taking account of inflation, this amounts to 119.61% over the March 2009 electricity price.
 
This, on its own, destroys the argument for keeping Eskom’s legislated monopoly for “the sake of the poor”.
 
The poor would likely not have been subjected to such large increases in so short an amount of time if private electricity providers had been allowed to compete with Eskom.
 
I believe that looking back to a mythical golden age when Eskom was beating the laws of economics contributes nothing to the urgent debate we need to have about how energy should be provided to the South African economy.
 
Should we continue sustaining Eskom at any cost, a company that has never been sustainable, or, rather, should we accept the laws of economics that have worked time and time again and leave energy provision to the market?
 
Mpiyakhe Dhlamini is a data science researcher at the Free Market Foundation
 
       
 
Published in Opinion & Analysis
South African President Cyril Ramaphosa did not make many new announcements his state of the nation address on Thursday night, but he used the occasion to warn those who have dabbled in corruption that government agencies will be coming for them.
 
Using the momentum of the newly appointed head of the National Prosecutions Authority, Shamila Batohi, he announced the creation of a specialised unit to deal with serious corruption and associated offences.
 
Ramaphosa said he had agreed with Batohi for the urgent need to set up this office and would soon promulgate a proclamation that will outline the specific terms of reference.
 
This will send a shiver down the spine of many of his fellow ANC leaders against whom allegations have been made at the Zondo commission of inquiry into state capture.
 
The unit or directorate will focus on the evidence that has emerged from the Zondo commission, as well as other commissions and disciplinary enquiries.
 
It will identify priority cases to investigate and prosecute and will recover assets identified to be proceeds of corruption.
 
This unit, which is already being compared to the defunct Scorpions, will help respond to public complaints that too many public representatives and government officials who are implicated in wrongdoing are let off the hook.
 
It also means that many of Ramaphosa’s opponents who have defiantly held on to positions will be handled by these processes without forcing his hand to fire them.
 
A he spoke, opposition MPs taunted him about a R500 000 donation that his ANC campaign received from Bosasa last year, implying that he could also be found wanting by these probes.
 
Ramaphosa proceeded with the speech nevertheless, without acknowledging or responding to their heckling.
 
Ramaphosa spent a lot of time speaking about the work he had done in the last year since taking over from Jacob Zuma, who was forced to resign by the ANC.
 
In particular he repeatedly mentioned his investment drive, which has attracted millions of dollars in pledges but is yet to make a direct impact on the economy.
 
“We are on the cusp of seeing direct jobs from the initiatives,” he promised.
 
As expected, a plan is also being crafted for the embattled power utility Eskom.
 
“Eskom is in crisis and the risk it poses for South Africa are great,” Ramaphosa acknowledged.
 
He said bold and decisive action was necessary and some of the consequences would be painful.
 
Without mentioning the details, it was clear the plan would either involve major restructuring or possible job losses.
 
“Eskom has come up with a the nine-point plan which we support and plan to implement. Eskom will need to take urgent steps to reduce its costs.”
 
The president was afforded space by the Economic Freedom Fighters, which had threatened to interrupt his state of the nation address unless he gave a proper explanation for the Bosasa donation.
 
But he spoke uninterrupted, which was a fresh breath of air for a Parliament used to the interruptions when Zuma was speaking.
 
Ramaphosa also spoke about a restructured intelligence service.
 
He was going to re-establish the national security council in order to better coordinate intelligence and security-related functions.
 
This follows work done by a high-level review panel on state security agency.
 
       
Source: City Express
Published in World
Despite billions of dollars being lost to the unending gridlock in Apapa Lagos, the Nigeria Customs Service, Apapa Area 1 command said it generated N404 billion for 2018 record year.
 
According to the Customs Area Controller of the Command, Bashir Abubakar while briefing newsmen in Lagos on Thursday, the money was revenue gathered from import and export duties.
 
The figure went up by N53 billion from the 2017 year where it generated N350.9 billion.
 
Abubakar explained that this implied that the agency recorded 95% of its target of N426.1bn for the year under review.
 
“This also shows that the command collected N53bn above the revenue generated in 2017,” he said.
 
While attributing the success to the commitment of staff and the support of the Comptroller-General of Customs, Col. Hameed Ali (retd.), he said the agency was strategic in the discharge of its duty.
 
He noted that 72 containers containing various goods were seized while another 41 containers with pharmaceutical drugs were intercepted.
 
“The strategies include an advanced system and monitoring, collaboration between internal and external units of the NCS and other government agencies.
 
“Seventy-two containers of various general goods such as used spare parts, used tyres and other sundry goods valued at N9.62bn were intercepted in 2018.
 
“In the year under review, the command also seized and condemned 41 containers of controlled pharmaceutical drugs including tramadol, with Duty Paid Value of N8.81bn.
 
“Furthermore, the command also seized an export-bound used helicopter valued at N210.6m, in addition to another import-bound aircraft “Cessna 182A” valued at N486.9m.
 
“All these items were seized owing to various infractions such as false declaration, concealment and complete disregard of import and export guidelines.”
 
He added that 2,500 containers were blocked over non-compliance to export declaration while command recorded 1, 206,649.67 tonnes of exported goods in 2018 valued $239.5m equivalent of N73.2bn.
 
 
Source: PmNews
Published in Business

The new law aims to protect children and the youth from being seduced by the commercials of liquor and become addicted and unproductive. It also plans to address the consequences of alcohol consumption on the health of individuals and over economy.

Reports show that most of drunkard drivers are among the causes of road traffic accidents in Ethiopia, which cost the country about 5,000 lives and millions of dollars property damage every year.

In Ethiopia liquor manufacturers and importers including beer factories have been major sponsors of broadcast programs. To minimize the impact of the ban on the income of the broadcast media, which are also significant in democratization of Ethiopia, government institutions should figure out how to work with the broadcasters for better good causes, according to the Minister of Health of Ethiopia Dr. Amir.

“…But as Minister of Health and my mandate, no matter what the consequence I support efforts to protect the health of the public,” he told Sheger FM this morning.

Primarily the draft law was suggesting transmission of alcohol adverts after the children sleep – after 9:PM. Meanwhile during the later discussions and public hearings, it is decided that alcohol advertisements have to be banned. Finally the 547 members parliament banned the commercials on broadcast media by over 400 majority votes.

The new law, which aims to protect the health of the public also involves articles related to tobacco and drug uses, among others.

Currently there are two wineries and several breweries while dozens of companies are engaged in import and distributions of liquors.

 

- New Business Ethiopia

Published in Economy
  1. Opinions and Analysis

Calender

« February 2019 »
Mon Tue Wed Thu Fri Sat Sun
        1 2 3
4 5 6 7 8 9 10
11 12 13 14 15 16 17
18 19 20 21 22 23 24
25 26 27 28