Saturday, 01 October 2016
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African leaders forge stronger ties with China at Beijing meeting

African governments have agreed with the Chinese administration to concentrate their efforts on promoting industrialisation and agricultural modernisation in Africa through industry alignment, transfer of technology and human resources capacity development cooperation.

Formal risk management groups on rise across Africa

Namibia has a new risk management association, with the launch of the Institute of Risk Management South Africa’s (IRMSA) first hub outside of South Africa. This follows the recent launch of Kenya’s first risk management association, courtesy of the Institute of Risk Management (IRM) opening a chapter in the east African state.

Namibian finance minister remains confident despite outlook revision

The finance minister of Namibia has come to the country’s defence and assured investors that it remains investment grade, after Fitch Ratings revised Namibia’s outlooks to negative from stable, while affirming the long-term foreign and local currency issuer default ratings (IDR) at BBB-.

    Modern slavery risk high or extreme in eight out of ten SSA countries

    More than 80% of Sub Saharan African countries have a high or extreme risk of slavery, including Kenya and Nigeria, two of the region’s three largest economies, according to a new report from risk analysts Verisk Maplecroft.

      Changing military dynamic may lead to heightened security threat

      The Ugandan People’s Defence Force’s (UPDF) phased withdrawal of its 2,500 troops from the African Union Regional Task Force (AU–RTF), scheduled to complete by October 2016, comes amid Uganda’s wider reconsideration of its regional military commitments. This indicates the country no longer perceives the Lord’s Resistance Army (LRA) as an imminent security threat, according to analysts from IHS.

        Use of captives for EB on the rise

        The use of captive insurance companies for financing employee benefits continues to evolve, as companies increasingly go beyond using their captive vehicle purely to save money on their annual employee benefits bill, according to new data from Willis Towers Watson.

          News in brief

          Congo ratings move, African air freight in decline, Angola rating revised down, Zambia hits more stable note and CFOs want strategic teams.

            Time for some good news

            In the newspaper business, good news is usually no news. As journalists, it is the breaking news that makes the story and that is, for the most part, something going wrong.

              African banks must seize the opportunity to grow

              African banks should seize the huge long-term potential offered by the sector across the continent, starting with necessary consolidation and targeting the development of homegrown banking champions, according to a leading banking figure.

                African oil and gas industry needs to consider change

                The decline in the global oil price has led to a reduced level of activity across the African continent and had an impact on countries that traditionally depend on oil and gas revenue. Despite the bleak landscape, the African continent still offers significant opportunities in the oil and gas sector, according to PwC.

                  Reinsurers continue African success story despite challenging market conditions

                  Africa Re has reported underwriting profit and investment income up 8% and 13% respectively, amid challenges to meet top-line targets following depreciation in the underlying currencies.

                    Tough times continue in Mozambique

                    Mozambique’s growth is expected to be lower in 2016 compared to 2015, according to trade credit insurer Coface. The warning came just as S&P Global Ratings affirmed its CCC/C long- and short-term foreign currency and B-/B long- and short-term local currency sovereign credit ratings on Mozambique. It has removed the ratings from CreditWatch, where they were placed with negative implications on 27 May 2016. The outlook is negative.

                      Misunderstanding and wrong perceptions still hampering business investment in Africa

                      Businesses are still holding back from investment in African countries for fear of misconceived perception about the risks involved, according to a group of risk managers who met in London recently.

                        Rail and roads: Growth amid challenges

                        The infrastructure landscape across west Africa could be about to change dramatically if several major projects are brought to fruition. Prince Cookey takes a look at how things might develop.

                          Public education campaign to grow insurance numbers

                          Borrowing from neighbouring Kenya, Uganda’s insurance industry has rolled out public education to trigger growth in the number of insured people as it seeks to raise penetration to at least 1% in the medium term.

                            Company boards crucial in shift to risk-based supervision

                            Risk management is rising to the top of the boardroom agenda thanks in no small part to changing emphasis from regulators across Africa. Gareth Stokes reports from the Risk Frontiers – South Africa seminar, held last week in Windhoek by Commercial Risk Africa.

                              Conflict, coup d’état and terrorism

                              Multinational firms face different political risks in each of the territories in which they operate.

                                Nothing stays the same for ever

                                Risk managers have to consider myriad challenges every day and a series of Risk Labs, organised by the Institute of Risk Management South Africa in Johannesburg, Cape Town and Durban, highlighted just a few of the factors facing all South African businesses.

                                  Risk managers would be foolish to ignore terror threat in South Africa

                                  South Africa may not be the number one country at risk of a terror attack in Africa, but risk managers should not be complacent.

                                    SA has challenges but risk managers are better prepared than ever before

                                    A youth bulge combined with high unemployment could produce a timebomb for South Africa, a country that is already suffering from high levels of protests and strikes.

                                      Customer-centricity key to success for developing insurance industry

                                      For a service-oriented industry, insurance customers can feel that they are far too low on the list of considerations. Delegates at the Organisation of Eastern and Southern Africa Insurers annual conference in Swakopmund heard that there needs to be a sea-change in approach if the insurance industry is to keep pace with looming challenges.

                                        Foundations laid for South Africa’s ‘Twin Peaks’ model of financial sector regulation

                                        Becoming more consumer-centric will be critical if insurers and brokers are to remain compliant with the impending changes in regulation for South Africa.

                                          Shareholders demand returns from their African insurance investments

                                          The expansion of South Africa-domiciled insurers into the rest of Africa will slow down during the next few years as firms wait for their existing investments to meet shareholders’ profit expectations. This was among the views shared by professional services firm KPMG at the Insurance Conference, held in Sun City, South Africa, on 24-27 July.