Wednesday, February 24, 2010
From Creamer Media in Johannesburg, I'm Amy Witherden.
South Africa is coming out of its first recession in almost two decades reasonably quickly, said South African Reserve Bank (SARB) governor Gill Marcus yesterday, as data showed the economy growing late last year.
Official figures showed that South Africa's gross domestic product expanded by 3,2% in the fourth quarter of 2009 on a seasonally adjusted and annualised basis.
Briefing the Parliamentary Committee on Finance, Marcus said that monetary policy remains directed towards containing inflation. She also said that it is not the job of the Reserve Bank to create jobs, after Finance Minister Pravin Gordhan last week wrote to the Reserve Bank stressing the need for it to be flexible in its approach.
A final investment decision on a 1 600-km transmission line between Tanzania, Kenya and Zambia meant to boost power trade across regions, could be taken this year, said Tanzania's Deputy Energy Minister Adam Malima. The line, which would link East Africa with the Southern African Power Pool (SAPP) and allow for electricity to be traded within and between the regions, could be built within three to four years.
Speaking on the sidelines of an African utility conference, Malima said that this project is core for the African power system and is inevitable.
The project has been discussed for nearly a decade but has not moved forward owing to a lack of agreement on how profits on the line should be divided and who should foot what part of the bill. Malima estimates that the project could cost around $700-million.
President Jacob Zuma said yesterday that there is nothing to prevent African National Congress Youth League leader Julius Malema from having undeclared business interests because he is not an elected public official.
Speaking to the Parliamentary Press Gallery Association, Zuma said that Malema is a politician and not an official in government, and as such, he does not fall within the rules for declaring business interests.
Zuma added that he did not want to comment on Malema's business interests, as it is not his place to keep tabs on the business interests of every individual.
Also making headlines:
Kenyan President Mwai Kibaki calls for unity in order to boost the country's economic growth.
South African Health Minster Aaron Motsoaledi says that the implementation of National Health Insurance is on course.
Niger's military junta names Mahamadou Danda as Prime Minister in a transitional government after last week's coup.
And, the Côte d'Ivoire announces a new government in a vital step towards ending protests and putting the country back on the path to elections.
That's a roundup of news making headlines today.