Kigali, Rwanda – March 26, 2019: Sustained infrastructure development is required across Africa to boost the prospects of integrated trade on the continent, Sahara Group has stated, as business leaders gather in Kigali, Rwanda for the 7th edition of the Africa CEO Forum.
Sahara Group’s Director for Governance and Sustainability, Pearl Uzokwe said the energy conglomerate would make a strong case for multi-stakeholder partnerships to shore up infrastructure development as “this is one of the most critical enabling factors required to achieve the ambitious ideals of the African Continental Free Trade Agreement (AfCTA).”
Uzokwe noted that the disparity in landscape composition across the continent is one of the most daunting barriers to economic development.
According to her, “There’s no doubt that infrastructure development should be accorded a prominent position on the agenda for the continent’s CEOs. The non-uniformity of Africa’s landscape confers some measure of advantage on countries with coastal lines as against nations that are landlocked. How to navigate this and other challenges to facilitate an integrated trade scenario remains a critical issue. The business community must be prepared to articulate a collaborative position that will address the achievement of the estimated $170 billion infrastructure funding gap in Africa,” she stated.
Scheduled to attend several meetings to push this position, Uzokwe will also join the AFRICA CEO’s Women in Business Initiative workshop dedicated to “Drafting a gender diversity charter to reach equality in the workplace”.
She said all stakeholders billed to attend the meeting are confident that the charter would drive specific actions geared towards ensuring there is adequate representation of approximately half the world’s population while becoming a catalyst for increasing female representation and retention at various levels of organizational hierarchies.
Uzokwe added that she was hopeful that the charter would also inspire more interventions to drive gender equality and more access to education for girls and women in Africa. “We are intentional about women empowerment and gender parity at Sahara Group and will continue to lead conversations and collaborations in this regard. Our support for women goes beyond just our employees as over two million people have benefitted from Sahara Foundation’s projects, with women and girls accounting for over 50% of the beneficiaries. Some of the initiatives include eye care programmes, scholarships, literacy development programmes, career guidance programmes and water & sanitation programmes and will continually look for ways to encourage sustainable growth and development in this regard”.
– SAHARA GROUP
Empowering Entrepreneurs is the Route to Eradicating Poverty in Africa – Tony Elumelu Foundation CEO, Ifeyinwa Ugochukwu
As Tony Elumelu Foundation Past Beneficiary, Wecyclers, Receives King Baudouin Award African Development Prize
Brussels, Belgium, June 13, 2019—The CEO, Tony Elumelu Foundation, Ifeyinwa Ugochukwu, stated that building and empowering entrepreneurs is the route to eradicating poverty and creating economic transformation in Africa. She said this in a fireside chat in Brussels where she was a guest of King Philippe and Queen Mathilde of Belgium as one of Tony Elumelu Foundation past beneficiaries, Wecyclers received the African Development Prize awarded by the King Baudouin Foundation.
During her remarks, she emphasized the need for Africans to develop a job-creating mentality, not a job-seeking mentality to catalyze the economic development on the continent.
She linked this to the work of the Tony Elumelu Foundation and its impact on the African continent. Its mission is to empower 10,000 African entrepreneurs in 10 years through its Entrepreneurship Programme. Just half-way through the Programme, the Foundation has empowered 7,520 African entrepreneurs across 54 African countries, providing its alumni with a non-refundable seed capital of $5,000 each, training, mentoring and networking opportunities. To further scale the impact of its work beyond its 10,000-beneficiary goal, the Foundation launched TEFConnect—the largest digital networking platform for African entrepreneurs—late last year. Already, the platform boasts over 500,000 registered users who network, do business and forge partnerships across the continent.
Hosted by the King Baudouin Foundation, the ceremony was in honour of the Nigerian business Wecyclers for their contribution to the development of sustainable recycling and environmental wellbeing. In 2012, Wecyclers received seed capital from the Tony Elumelu Foundation through a partnership with accelerator, CCHub.
Following the presentation of the prize to Olawale Adebiyi, Wecyclers CEO, Mrs. Ugochukwu commended the work of the team. The award represented further credence to the importance and potential of entrepreneurship in Africa in transforming the economy and lives of Africans.
She said, “The Wecyclers initiative is further testament to the Tony Elumelu Foundation’s belief that all of Africa’s problems are businesses waiting to be taken on by the bright young minds we have in Africa”.
Mrs. Ifeyinwa Ugochukwu closed her remarks by reiterating the commitment of the Tony Elumelu Foundation to supporting SMEs and MSMEs and in turn creating the millions of jobs that the youth population of Africa needs.
Tony Elumelu Foundation
Africa loses $50B annually due to corruption, illegal flows
Ministry of Planning – Youtube
CAIRO – 13 June 2019: The first African Forum for Combating Corruption revealed that the African continent losesan estimate of $50billion annually due to corruption and illegal financial flows, the Planning Ministry said.
The forum,which is held under the patronage of President Abdel Fatah al-Sisi in Sharm El-Sheikh, highlighted several issues and important topics in the strategies of African countries and their efforts to confront corruption and illegal financial flows.
The Ministry of Planning, Follow-up and Administrative Reform stressed that the problem of corruption is of the utmost importance to the development priorities in the African continent, emphasizing the need for comprehensive treatment for the matter.
The ministry also expressed its happiness and pride in participating in the session “Sustainability of the African continent’s resources to serve the objectives of sustainable development” as it is the first forum of its kind to be held on the African continent.
The ministry talked about the importance of anti-corruption efforts to achieve sustainable development.
It also pointed out that the national plans and strategies to achieve sustainable development in many countries of the continent, including Egypt,are based upon special axes fighting corruption, indicating that this reflects the centrality of anti-corruption efforts within the framework of the UN, regional and national strategies for sustainable development.
“Corruption negatively affects the revenues of public budgets of states, the economic efficiency of institutions and the efficiency and effectiveness of public administrative organizations as well as its impact on the investment environment in general,” it stated.
According to the ministry, the African countries have stepped up their efforts in recent years to fight corruption and increase regional cooperation in this area, the ministry said, stressing the importance of activating mechanisms and legal and regulatory frameworks developed by the countries of the continent to combat corruption, including the African Union Convention against Corruption and the SADC Anti-Corruption Protocol, as well as ECOWAS Anti-Corruption Protocol.
On the Egyptian anti-corruption efforts to achieve sustainable development in accordance with the vision of Egypt 2030 and at the national level, the Planning Ministry pointed out that the Egyptian State attaches great importance to intensifying efforts to enhance the efficiency of institutions and fight corruption to achieve comprehensive and sustainable development.
The Egyptian government is currently carrying out a comprehensive plan for the reform and governance of the administrative system, the ministry said, stating that the plan aims at raising the efficiency of institutions, strengthening governance and combating corruption.
WorldRemit launches new product for business payments to Nigeria
Through the WorldRemit website and app small and medium-sized enterprises (SMEs) can now quickly and securely transfer money to pay employees and contractors in 140 countries including Nigeria
LONDON, United Kingdom, June 13, 2019 – Leading digital money transfer company WorldRemit has launched WorldRemit for Business, a new service that enables small and medium-sized business owners to quickly pay employees and contractors in 140 countries worldwide, including fast-growing markets such as Nigeria, Ghana, Kenya, and South Africa. The platform will first be available to U.K.-registered businesses.
WorldRemit’s low fees and exchange rates are shown up-front and customers can send money easily via the company’s website and app. By extending its money transfer service to SMEs, WorldRemit will save businesses time and money when they make international payments.
Each year, the UK imports $2 billion in goods and services from Nigeria, where SMEs account https://pwc.to/2Re1abj for 96% of businesses and 84% of employment. WorldRemit for Business will make it easier individuals to receive payment by UK-based partners via bank transfer to GT Bank accounts. While some banks can take up to one week to process payments, WorldRemit transfers to Nigeria are processed instantly.
Customers sending funds abroad can easily track their transfers in real-time on the WorldRemit app and opt-in to receive daily exchange notifications to send money abroad at the optimal time.
Ismail Ahmed, Founder and Executive Chairman at WorldRemit, comments: “When I first started WorldRemit, I was frustrated with the high charges and long delays in sending money abroad both as a business owner and consumer. Over the past 9 years, we’ve made it easier for 4 million people around the globe to send and receive money.
Today, we’re pleased to extend that service offering to businesses, and put an end to the steep fees that many businesses have to pay, especially when sending to Nigeria. We’re committed to making it quick, safe and easy for you to pay individuals across borders, leaving you to focus on growing your own business.”
Shane Lennox, Senior Product Manager for Business, comments: “With more people moving and settling across borders, the nature of business is becoming increasingly global. This new product offering is catering for those in need of a digital service that solves a number of pain points faced by SMEs with international staff and contractors. This new product launch will enable millions of SMEs to benefit from our award-winning convenient service.”
WorldRemit customers complete over 1.4 million transfers every month from over 50 countries to over 140 destinations using its app or website and remains committed to providing innovative solutions to meet money transfer needs across the world. In addition to partnering with Nigerian Banks including First Bank of Nigeria Plc, Access Bank Plc, Fidelity Bank Plc for instant digital money transfers. In April 2019 the company launched international transfers to Paga mobile money accounts.