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Welcome to this latest edition of S-RM’s Regional Bulletin for Sub-Saharan Africa. Here, we review some of the key news stories and developments across the region. Elections in Angola and Rwanda have predictably maintained the status quo, whilst the SADC has failed to place the Democratic Republic of Congo’s recalcitrant President Joseph Kabila under pressure to organise his own delayed elections.
A flurry of legislative activity in South Africa has received a mixed response, resulting in a revised mining charter and regulatory change to combat financial crime. Meanwhile, President Trump has until 12 October to make a decision on extending or easing US sanctions on Sudan, and Mozambique remains at stalemate with the IMF following the long-running ‘tuna bond’ scandal.
In our first feature article, Gabrielle Reid takes a look at the commercial impact of the Magufuli presidency in Tanzania, as he turns his populist fervour to the country’s mining sector. A robust approach to anti-corruption initiatives and a prioritisation of long-term development goals won President John Magufuli initial praise, but short-term investor confidence has been shaken by a series of bills amending regulation in the mining sector. ‘The Bulldozer’s’ centralised approach to governance is anticipated to facilitate further ad hoc policy changes, but President Magufuli’s administration will need to be mindful not to push back too hard on investors.
Our second feature article sees Ben Connery analyse the impact of a re-run of Kenya’s presidential election on the country’s longer-term political and economic prospects. In an unprecedented ruling in Africa, on 1 September Kenya’s Supreme Court annulled President Uhuru Kenyatta’s election victory of the previous month, in a promising sign of the judiciary asserting its independence from an executive affected by endemic corruption. Whilst fears of instability and the unexpectedly prolonged political uncertainty are expected to slow the Kenyan economy in the short term, a focus on infrastructure, power and technology is likely be a powerful driver of longer-term growth.
We hope you enjoy this brief look at the African continent, and if you have any questions regarding S-RM’s work here, or elsewhere in the world, please don’t hesitate to get in touch.
All the best,
Natalie Thomas Stafford