Africa in Business: from Harris to hydrogen

9 個月前

STORY: Here's what's been making the business headlines in sub-Saharan Africa this week.

1. U.S. Vice President Kamala Harris starts a week-long African trip at the weekend during which she will discuss the best ways for the international community to address debt challenges faces by Ghana and Zambia.

American officials said Harris - the latest senior U.S. figure to take part in a diplomatic charm offensive on the continent - would also discuss China's engagement in technology and economic issues in Africa that concern the United States.

2. Africa-focused oil and gas producer Savannah Energy said on Friday (March 24) that it will pursue all its legal rights after Chad's government moved to nationalize its upstream assets in the country.

In December, Exxon Mobil closed a sale to London-listed Savannah of its 40% stake in the Doba Oil Project, comprising seven producing oilfields, in a $407m deal - but the Chadian government challenged the agreement.

3. Kenya's government is close to approving a restructuring plan for Kenya Airways, its CEO has said.

That plan replaces one introduced by the previous administration under President Uhuru Kenyatta, which would eventually have seen the state take over $800 million of the airline's debt.

Kenyatta's successor William Ruto has said he will cut borrowing and called into question the government's participation in Kenya Airways.

4. South African lender Absa Group said on Friday that it's aiming for net zero by 2050 by curtailing lending to coal, oil and gas projects and increasing its exposure to renewables.

South African banks - among the biggest on the continent - have come under fire from activists and environmentalists for continuing to fund fossil fuel projects, in contrast with many of their global peers.

5. And finally, France's HDF Energy is to develop Zimbabwe's first green hydrogen power plant, it said in a joint statement with the country's state-owned electricity distributor on Thursday (March 23).

The countries signed a memorandum of understanding, worth £300m, for the plant which will use renewable energy to produce hydrogen with the aim of providing electricity for 220,000 people.