Archive for November 27th, 2007

source: BOPA
27 November, 2007

JWANENG – Botswanas beef exports will continue to enter the European market beyond the December 31 lapse of the current trade arrangement following an interim agreement between some Southern African countries and the European economic bloc.

Trade and industry minister, Mr Neo Moroka said at the Southern District Beef Farmers Association (SDBFA) field day held near Jwaneng over the weekend that following the protracted negotiations between SADC and the EU, the two parties have agreed that beef exports from the Southern African countries will have unlimited access to the EU market while a standing trade negotiation between the two economic blocs is negotiated and finalised.

As per the new arrangement, Mr Moroka said, Botswana, Swaziland and Lesotho who are signatories of the new interim economic partnership agreement will export duty free to the EU market and without limitations on exports.

South Africa and Namibia are also expected to endorse the new trade deal in the coming week.

Economic Partnership Agreements (EPAs) between the two economic blocs that are aimed at opening a reciprocal trade between the two blocs in line with the World Trade Organisations set of international trade rules.

Therefore, the new interim agreement will provide Southern African countries with a [continue reading]

source: Telegraph (UK)
By David Blair in Kampala
Last Updated: 1:44am GMT 26/11/2007

Commonwealth leaders agreed an historic reform yesterday by formally dropping the requirement for members to be former British colonies.

The decision came on the last day of the Commonwealth summit in Uganda’s capital Kampala. For the first time, the 52 member states set down conditions for membership.

The Commonwealth’s origins were devised at conferences held in the early 20th century by British Empire prime ministers in London.

But numerous countries with no links to Britain are expressing an interest in joining.

They include Rwanda, colonised by Germany and then Belgium, which dropped French as its official language and will probably be admitted at the next summit in 2009.

In their final communiqué, Commonwealth leaders said that an “applicant country should, as a general rule, have had an historic constitutional association with an existing Commonwealth member”. A link with [continue reading]

source: IOL

November 27 2007 at 11:58AM

The National Union of Mineworkers (NUM) said on Tuesday it had been given the go-ahead by authorities to stage a one-day nationwide strike on December 4 to highlight the issue of safety at mines.

“Yes, we are going on strike on December 4, we have been given the go-ahead,” NUM spokesperson Lesiba Seshoka said.

Seshoka said more than 240 000 mine workers are expected [continue reading]

source: BOPA
27 November, 2007

GABORONE – Botswana is endowed with natural resources that can be transformed into a permanent flow of income such as silica sands, limestone and soda ash.

Botswana Export Development and Investment Authority (BEDIA) annual report for the year 2006/2007 says the country exports dense soda ash to South African glass manufacturers.

Soda ash is another major ingredient in glass production as it helps to lower melting temperatures.

BEDIA carried a study on glass and glass related products with the aim of conducting an assessment and location as well as quantity of the raw materials.

Apart from soda ash, which is abundant in Sua Pan, the study identified Mmamabula sands that are suitable for float glass manufacturing, says the report.

The study says the Mmamabula sands deposit is estimated to be 13 million tonnes and that the sands are [continue reading]

source: BOPA
27 November, 2007

KAMPALA – Botswana and Canada are looking into ways to further strengthen bilateral relations and explore more areas of trade and cooperation.

Permanent Secretary in the Ministry of Foreign Affairs and International Cooperation, Mr Charles Ntwaagae said in an interview that President Festus Mogae met Canadian Prime Minister Stephen Harper on the sidelines of the Commonwealth Heads of Government Meeting on Saturday to touch base on a number of issues.

The two leaders discussed a wide range of issues, including collaboration in mining.

Mr Ntwaagae said Botswanas economy is propelled by mining, in particular diamonds, so it is fitting to work with Canada as the country is a giant in the industry.

Also the permanent secretary said both countries are party to the Kimberly Process meant to ensure that illegal gems termed conflict diamonds do not enter the market.

Regarding education, he said Botswana is looking to have Canada assist towards [continue reading]

source: News24
27/11/2007 12:42 – (SA)

Durban – Police in Pietermaritzburg issued a fraud warning on Tuesday after financial institutions in the area reported numerous cases of the new “over deposit refund scam”, police said.

Police spokesperson Inspector Joey Jeevan said a fax was sent to a potential victim by a person pretending to be from South African Revenue Service (SARS) or Telkom.

“In the fax they say a certain amount of money has been paid in error into the victim’s account and the unsuspecting victim is then instructed to refund SARS or Telkom,” said Jeevan.

“The victim generally pays the amount after he/she notices that an amount has been deposited into his/her bank account. Later, the bank informs the victim that the [continue reading]

source: BOPA
27 November, 2007

GABORONE – The newly launched website and logo for the Attorney Generals Chambers (AGC) are designed to reflect the departments mandate, enhance its professional image and increase its awareness among stakeholders, says Mr Phandu Skelemani.

Speaking at the launch, the Minister of Justice, Defence and Security said the logo, website and revised strategic plan will drive the mandate of the department and serve as a strategic reference point.

He said the developments are historic and timely in the age of organisational branding and customer-centered service.

I believe everybody would agree with me that websites are of paramount importance in the modern world.

Mr Skelemani noted that the website will expose the department to the international community and allow customers easy access to information about the department and its mandate from the comfort of their desks.

The minister also noted that the website boasts an enquiry facility through which customers queries and comments will be received and be accordingly processed.

He said one of the challenges facing the chambers, as is the case with most organisations, is to keep the website up-to-date and current.

For her part, the Attorney General, Dr Athaliah Molokomme said [continue reading]

source: Mmegi

BY TUMELO SETSHOGO
CORRESPONDENT

Mmegi staff photographer Kebofhe Mathe has scooped the first prize in the Photography category and walked away P10, 000 richer at the Orange Botswerere Artist Award 2007 at the Gaborone International Convention Centre (GICC) on Friday.

The awards were sponsored by Orange Botswana and Department of Culture and Youth.
Mathe was competing with other potential winners in the likes of Chief Kgosi Goodwill and Leutlwetse Kgosidialwa. The three nominees have been in photojournalism at their respective companies for a long time, according to background information provided before the winners were announced.

The French Embassy sponsored this category. Counsellor for cooperation and Culture Affairs at the embassy awarded Mathe the prize. In the creative writing category, Lauri Kubuitsile scooped the first prize, beating [continue reading]

Mogae off to Mozambique

source: BOPA
27 November, 2007

GABORONE – President Festus Mogae will attend the handover of the Cahora Bassa Dam to the Mozambique government by Portugal today.

Cahora Bassa is the biggest dam in Southern Africa and which was constructed in the 1960s by a consortium of South African, Italian and German investors headed by Anglo American Trust.

Since construction ended in 1974 Portugal has retained control of the dam, until a memorandum of agreement signed early this month that gives Mozambique charge of the dam.

The new arrangement gives Mozambique 85 per cent of the Cahora Bassa Hydroelectric (HCB) project while Portugal will retain only 15 per cent.

The project has capacity to produce 2 000 megawatts of electricity and is one of the main suppliers of power to [continue reading]

source: BOPA
27 November, 2007

GHANZI – Ministry of Agricultures collaboration with Botswana Training Authority has the potential to improve the quality of skills in the Agricultural sector for better throughput. says Olifant Mfa.

Officiating during Farmers Association Breakfast Seminar in Ghanzi on Friday Assistant minister of Agriculture Mr Olifant Mfa said this could be achieved through the development of unit standards, accreditation of Rural Training Centers and registration of trainers and assessors and general quality assurance of all inputs.

Improvement of skills within the sector will then lead to improved service delivery and production through skilled human resources.

The training standard according to the Assistant Minister for Agriculture can also be used at the work place to improve the skills of those working in farms.

He however put it to farmers that the development of training standard will require their full participation as they (farmers) understand the skills required better than anybody.

He therefore urged practitioners in Agriculture to grab the opportunity presented to [continue reading]

source: BOPA
27 November, 2007

KANYE – Botswana Power Corporation (BPC) is busy planning to electrify rural areas which do not enjoy the coverage of the national electricity supply network through a programme dubbed non-grid electricity supply.

Addressing the Southern District full council meeting Tuesday, a BPC official, Ms Tapiwa Moloise said the programme would be implemented under the Renewable Energy-Based Rural Electrirification Project.

Ms Moloise said all rural houses, including those in the farming areas, had been targeted for connection, adding that the government of Botswana and UNDP tasked BPC with the implementation of the programme in 2005.

She said the programme, which used the alternative of solar power, would also cover businesses and government facilities which had been missed by the national grid.

She said the project would be useful to the people, including the government and councils because of its efficiencies and cost benefits through economies of scale and localised technical services.

Ms Moloise further said it would also overcome technical capacity issues of [continue reading]

source: Mmegi

The Botswana Power Corporation (BPC) says the country might get a new 250 MW peaking to a midmerit power plant to cater for what it terms a “supply gap”.

It is envisaged that an independent power producer (IPP) will develop the power station. In an invitation to show interest, BPC says the “gestation period” for the IPP power plant should not be more than two years from January 1, 2008. The BPC will buy the capacity and energy from the developer through a power purchase agreement. It might also consider a build, own, operate and transfer arrangement. The closing date for the expressions of interest is December 14.

Current electricity demand in Botswana is estimated at 500 MW, which [continue reading]

source: SW Radio Africa

By Tichaona Sibanda
26 November 2007

Zambian Airways will stop its direct flights to Harare from Friday, becoming the second airline to pull out of Zimbabwe in less than a month.
British Airways stopped its direct flights from London on 30th October, citing viability problems. David Evans, the chief operating officer for Zambia Airways told Newsreel from Lusaka Monday that the reason for ditching the route was that it was no longer profitable.
The airline flies daily into Zimbabwe and the last flight on the Harare-Lusaka route will be on November 30th. Evans said the decision was taken purely on a commercial basis because of continuing operational challenges caused by high fuel costs and extreme currency fluctuations in Zimbabwe.

‘We have been keeping a close watch on the route and came to a conclusion that there is no [continue reading]

soure: Mmegi

BY ONALENNA MODIKWA
STAFF WRITER

SELEBI-PHIKWE: After announcing the signing of a Memorandum of Agreement (MoU) with the Local Enterprise Authority for the benefit of the small business sector in Gaborone last month, Barclays Bank of Botswana introduced the MoU in Selebi-Phikwe last Thursday.

Addressing a Business Club seminar held for the purpose, the bank’s head of SME Division Sabrina Mahlalela said the agreement would enable the two institutions to work together mainly because they share similar objectives regarding concern for the success of the small and medium business sector.

Mahlalela emphasized the importance of SMEs to the broader economy and the sector’s share of job creation.

She noted that over the years, Barclays bank has been criticised for [continue reading]

source: allAfrica
East African Business Week (Kampala)

26 November 2007
Posted to the web 26 November 2007

Edris Kisambira
Kampala

Uganda’s President Yoweri Museveni has asked the Commonwealth Business Council (CBC) to help break down trade barriers preventing poor commonwealth member states from exporting value-added goods instead of raw materials.

“We have confined ourselves to the export of raw materials such as coffee, where we have been getting $1 per kilogramme while Nescafe in London is getting $20 per kilogramme,” Museveni told delegates. “It is possible for us to break into these markets if we can add value, we need the CBC to help out.”

Museveni said that if the CBC played a big role in breaking those trade barriers, it will be mutually beneficial for all Commonwealth member states. Of the 53 members, 20 are the only ones that can be considered wealthy.

And a good number of the 53 members of the Commonwealth have been held back because of [continue reading]