Africa in Business: Ramaphosa rumors hit rand

STORY: Here are five business stories making headlines in sub-Saharan Africa this week.

South Africa's rand stabilized early on Friday (December 2) following a steep sell-off the day before.

The currency had, at one stage on Thursday (December 1), plunged more than 4% on speculation President Cyril Ramaphosa was going to resign after a panel report found preliminary evidence he may have violated the constitution.

Also in South Africa, the country's National Prosecuting Authority said on Thursday that Swiss engineering firm ABB has agreed to pay 2.5 billion rand, or around $144.5 million, for its involvement in state corruption.

ABB was investigated for and found guilty of improper payments and other compliance issues at the Kusile power station, in a wide-scale investigation that concluded in June.

The Ivorian subsidiary of French telecoms company Orange will launch an initial public offering on December 5, lead manager NSIA Finance has said.

Stock worth almost 141 billion CFA francs, or $215 million, will be sold to private investors - with a discount on offer for Orange Cote d'Ivoire employees.

Germany has pledged $86 million to Ghana in grants to support renewable energy and financial sector development, Ghana's finance ministry has said.

The West African nation has been unable to access international capital markets since a flurry of credit ratings downgrades at the beginning of the year.

And finally, more direct financing is needed to support the whole of Africa's transition to cleaner fuels and power generation, a panel at the Reuters Next conference has heard.

Anibor Kragha, executive secretary of the African Refiners and Distributors Association, said projects on the continent were struggling to tap available finance for the energy transition.

"We have to have a pool of capital designated for decarbonization projects for Africa that can go beyond just the commercial banks to the DFI (development finance institutions), so that we can actually execute in a meaningful and sustainable manner”