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Engen has introduced MTN Mobile Money payments at its ten service stations in Kigali. Customers can purchase fuel, lubricants and other goods via the platform, and the service will be rolled out to up-country service stations in early 2017. Engen started operations in Rwanda in November 2008 after acquiring the assets of Total. It now has 21 service stations in the country.

Rwanda
Issue 161 - 24 April 2009

Artumas needs cash for power lifeline

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Oslo Börs-listed Artumas Group has retained DnB NOR Markets to help it work out ways to resolve its short-term financing problems (AE 159/4). Some $10m of convertible bonds fall due in June, and the Canadian company concedes that meeting the payments will pose a challenge in the present environment. The Oslo-based bank, part of Norway’s largest financial services group,

Mozambique | Tanzania
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Tullow Oil says it has “agreed the principles” of a capital gains tax payment to the Ugandan government on the farm-down of its assets. The company said in its 2018 results statement on 13 February that tax payments would be phased and partly linked to project progress. A final investment decision (FID) on the upstream development is held up by a government demand for a $167m tax payment on the $900m farm-down deal.

Uganda
Free

There has been progress in the campaign against Boko Haram and President Muhammadu Buhari’s flagship fight against corruption. Higher oil prices will pump more cash into the economy, helping to ease extreme foreign exchange shortages that have hurt business. A $1bn Eurobond was nearly eight times oversubscribed, the Ministry of Finance said on 9 February. But pending a major fillip for the economy (including an eventual official devaluation of the naira), the outlook for Nigeria remains patchy, with investors holding back until they see clearer signs of the direction of business and politics.

Nigeria
Free

United Nations (UN) Secretary-General Ban Ki-moon and World Bank Group President Jim Yong Kim have announced the members of the advisory board and executive committee for the Sustainable Energy for All (SE4All) initiative. The initiative is a partnership between governments, the private sector, and civil society. Launched in 2011, it has set three objectives to be achieved by 2030: to provide universal access to modern energy; double the share of renewable energy in the global energy mix; and double the global rate of improvement in energy efficiency.

Issue 259 - 26 July 2013

Liberia: Anti-corruption court


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President Ellen Johnson-Sirleaf has renewed calls for a fast-track court on corruption. Speaking during the dedication of projects undertaken for independence celebrations on 26 July, she said that the three branches of government – executive, legislative (consisting of the Senate and House of Representatives) and judiciary – would work together for the country’s prosperity. “We have been calling for a fast-track court on corruption; so we are emphasising that call on the legislature because the executive cannot do it alone. We need to address some problems,” she said.

Liberia
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The government’s draft finance bill, approved by the cabinet on 18 December, looks forward to stronger economic growth, higher exports – including from increased oil output – and a lower budget deficit next year. Prime Minister Motazz Moussa observed that the 2019 budget was “based on real resources [and] disciplined spending”.

Sudan
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ICBC Standard Bank has agreed to pay fines in the UK and US for failing to prevent a former affiliated bank from trying to bribe officials in Tanzania. Lord Justice Leveson at Southwark Crown Court on 30 November approved the first application by the UK Serious Fraud Office (SFO) to use a deferred prosecution agreement to end an investigation. The bank agreed to pay a fine of $25.2m and a further $7m in compensation to the government of Tanzania. The $25.2m penalty consisted of a $16.8m fine and $8.4m in disgorgement of profits, the SFO said.

Tanzania
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No public money is available to support Algeria’s ambitious renewable energy development programme, which remains a high national priority despite the lack of projects. So support for solar and wind projects will have to come from the private sector and mostly from international companies, according to the most recent statements from energy minister Noureddine Bouterfa, who says the programme will now be rebooted. But despite the low global oil price and domestic fiscal austerity, it is far from clear that Algeria is ready to return to international project financing, which has been outlawed for more than a decade. The sector may fall back on the tried and tested backstop of bringing in state-owned oil and gas company Sonatrach to fill the gap.

Algeria
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Burkina Faso, Democratic Republic of Congo, Morocco, Mozambique and Zambia presented investment plans and projects for approval at the Climate Investment Funds (CIF) partnership forum in Cape Town on 24-25 June, hosted by the African Development Bank (AfDB). New projects included:

Morocco
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President Muhammadu Buhari visited China in mid-April, accompanied by ten government ministers, and returned with a number of trade agreements. Buhari secured a $6bn loan for infrastructure projects, an increase in the amount of Nigerian foreign reserves held in yuan, a deal with Industrial and Commercial Bank of China (ICBC) to extend the use of the Chinese currency in trade finance arrangements, and the opening of negotiations on a ‘Panda’ bond, denominated in yuan and marketed in China. ICBC also agreed to lend $2bn to Dangote Group for two cement plants.

Nigeria
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A Lagos-based energy and natural resources lawyer told African Energy immediate action was needed to save the sector. “The bubble of debt will keep growing until eventually it bursts, which will likely result in companies going bust and the whole power market collapsing. The only way out is for the discos and gencos to raise money through sales of equity – which they are very reluctant to do – or for the government to come to the rescue and bail out the sector. The sector is a ticking time bomb and there isn’t long left until we reach a crunch point.”

Nigeria
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Finance minister Nhlanhla Nene’s 2015 budget speech was hard listening for power consumers, already pressed by an erratic electricity supply and rising tariffs. Nene confirmed that Eskom will apply to the National Energy Regulator of South Africa (Nersa) for an increase in the electricity tariff above the 8% already approved, as well as announcing a proposal to increase the electricity levy from 3.5c/kWh to 5.5c/kWh, insisting that the move is intended to encourage energy saving rather than to raise revenue.

South Africa
Issue 406 - 19 December 2019

Uganda: Umeme secures $70m loan

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Distribution company Umeme Ltd announced on 12 December that it has secured a $70m loan that will part-fund its capital expenditure for the next two years. The World Bank Group’s International Finance Corporation was lead arranger for the syndicated loan; participants included Stanbic Bank Uganda Ltd, Standard Chartered Bank and the Netherlands’ FMO. Umeme is investing in the expansion and reinforcement of its network to improve the quality and reliability of supply.

Uganda
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Germany’s KfW has extended grant financing totalling €41.5m ($46.6m) for the rehabilitation and expansion of the 6MW Chishimba Falls hydropower plant in Kasama District in Northern Province. The project, which involves the rehabilitation and upgrading of existing structures and the construction of a new 15MW hydropower station and associated substation, will help meet increasing energy demand in northern Zambia, which has been experiencing low voltage and power outages in recent years, KfW principal project manager Marco Freitag told African Energy.

Zambia