Despite their upset defeat in the first-round presidential elections, establishment parties will rally behind a unity candidate in the second round and maintain a strong course for legislative dominance. This makes the probability of a strongman populist president emerging from this electoral cycle marginally less likely. Regardless of the outcome, the IMF programme is likely to remain in place.
The government has admitted that the economy is slowing, although it still refuses to blame weak debt management. As the import bill is set to rise and debt servicing costs creep up, the risk of delayed payment on state contracts and sovereign default will remain high in coming months. Chinese companies are seeking mining assets as collateral in case of non-payment, leaving western investors potentially more exposed.
A shock to global oil prices leaves many African markets unprepared for more expensive import bills, while some crude producers may struggle to reap the benefits of higher oil export revenues. EXX Africa assesses the risk outlook for Africa’s largest oil producers and the continent’s main fuel importers.
The suspension of work on the Uganda to Tanzania crude pipeline is a major setback for the development of the Lake Albert oil sector and is likely to push back the deadline for commercial production even further. EXX Africa assesses the wider risk outlook for the Ugandan oil sector and the factors that could cause further delay to project completion.
The new government will have little time to celebrate a court ruling confirming its electoral victory earlier this year, as concerns mount over weak tax collections and rising debt servicing costs at a time of sluggish economic growth. The administration will also need to apply measures to protect its commercial assets like crude cargoes from seizure following a recent court ruling over a gas dispute.
The presidential election remains too close to call as establishment parties are set to rally behind a unity candidate in the second round to fend off a challenge from emerging populist candidates. Low voter interest in the presidential contest indicates that the real political battle will focus on the parliamentary vote in October. Whoever wins the elections, the current IMF programme is likely to remain in place. Benefits from the loan programme are starting to show as inflation slows and the government issues new bonds to finance its budget deficit.
Algeria’s ruling general is either preparing to install himself as a strongman-president of an Egyptian-inspired securocratic state or he is seeking to transition political power to a civilian administration that will protect the military’s interests. EXX Africa investigates the probability and implications of both scenarios.
Tanzania’s current administration has embarked on a number of reforms to harness the potential of artisanal and small-scale mining and address its associated environmental and social concerns. EXX Africa examines these changes and assesses whether enough has been done within the mining sector as a whole.
The incoming transitional government will need to address three priorities if it is to last its three-year term: namely seeking prosecution of those held responsible for war crimes and violence against protestors; unravelling Sudan’s ‘deep-state’ of competing power networks that continue to control lucrative assets; and driving a sustained economic recovery, most likely with Gulf financial support.
Just weeks away from publishing its much-anticipated master plan for the struggling power sector, the government is considering prescribing financial assets and forcing pension funds and banks to invest in state utilities’ debt as an alternative to seeking IMF support. However, the government’s intention to renew nuclear power capability may be more considered and economically prudent than previous nuclear procurement plans.
- EXX Africa director Robert Besseling moderated a panel on Africa’s commodity rollercoaster at GTR Commodities in Geneva hosted by Global Trade Review (GTR)
- SOUTH SUDAN: DEBT BURDEN AND CORRUPTION MAY DISSUADE FRESH FOREIGN INVESTMENT
- TUNISIA: MAIN POLITICAL PARTIES SEEK TO MITIGATE IMPACT OF UPSET ELECTORAL DEFEAT
- ZAMBIA: CHINA SEEKS MINING ASSETS AS COLLATERAL TO PROTECT AGAINST LOOMING DEFAULT
- SPECIAL REPORT: SHOCK TO GLOBAL OIL PRICES WILL IMPACT AFRICAN PRODUCERS AND IMPORTERS