Archive for December 15th, 2007

source: BOPA
13 December, 2007

GABORONE – The mining boom that Botswana is experiencing will add the much needed value to the economy. Speaking in an interview, an independent economic consultant, Dr Keith Jefferies noted that diversification within mineral economies leads to promotion and exploitation of different minerals in a situation where an economy is highly dependent on a single commodity such as diamonds.

He said apart from being a leading producer of diamonds in the world, Botswana also produced copper and nickel, coal, cobalt, gold and soda ash.

Dr Jefferies explained that for this boom to be of benefit to the country, the government should make sure that the investment climate was conducive to the realisation of economies of scale The consultant added that they had to be [continue reading]

source: allAfrica
Highway Africa News Agency (Grahamstown)

14 December 2007
Posted to the web 14 December 2007

Francis Mukuzunga

Telecom Namibia and the Xnet Development Alliance Trust announced sign a memorandum of understanding (MoU) to provide subsidized Internet access to more than 1 500 schools as well as other educational establishments in Namibia.

The partnership will support and enhance the provision of affordable, subsidised Internet to schools and educational institutions affordable prices.

The director of Namibia Telecoms, Mr Frans Ndoroma and the chairperson of Xnet Trust, Dr. Tjama Tjivikua signed the partnership and agreed that it was a “landmark” in the struggle to bridge the digital divide.

Dr. Tjivikua also highlighted the pivotal role that ICTs play in the development of nations, saying, “This is a landmark agreement as it breaks new ground. ICT is an absolute requirement in the modern economy. ICT is an enabler and facilitator for growth and knowledge transfer. It brings technology closer to the people and allows them to contribute to the democratisation of ICT in Namibia.”

“Telecom Namibia are excited about the [continue reading]

source: BOPA
13 December, 2007

MAUN – Government is committed to improving the out-of-school education to promote learning and skills for young people and adults, says Assistant Minister of Education, Mr Peter Siele.

Officiating at the graduation ceremony of Non Formal Education, standard seven class of 2006/07 in North West region, Mr Siele said Non- formal Education had grown and it continued to grow, adding that his ministry was committed to its enhancement.

“To address the disadvantage that the out-of-school learners experience in the School Primary Leaving Examination (PLSE), my Ministry is developing an adult basic education programme that is equivalent in quality to the Primary School Leaving Examination,” he said.

Mr Siele said the implementation of the adult basic education programme was important because through it, Botswana would fulfill the education-for-all of “Promoting learning and skills for young people and adults,” as espoused in the Millennium Development Goals.

The programme will require facilitators who are [continue reading]

source: SW Radiao Africa

By Tererai Karimakwenda
14 December 2007

Speculation as to whether the harmonised elections due next year will be postponed to allow more time for preparation, was put to rest by Robert Mugabe on Thursday at the official opening of ZANU-PF’s Extraordinary Congress in Harare. In his keynote address the ruling party leader said the elections will be held in March without fail and warned all participants they will only have themselves to blame if they are not ready.

The opposition faction led by Morgan Tsvangirai reacted to Mugabe’s announcement by saying it was outrageous, as the date and other electoral issues are to be decided only within the context of the mediated talks in South Africa. A civil organisation opposed to the whole process, the National Constitutional Assembly (NCA), said the MDC should not be surprised because Mugabe has always set a March date for the elections.

According to the state media Mugabe said: “We shall hold this combined poll in that month of March without fail, in the month of March without fail. I want to [continue reading]

Victory for Botswana at UN

source: BOPA
13 December, 2007

BALI, Indonedia – Botswana and its negotiating partners have succeeded in convincing the UN to set up a climate change adaptation fund, which will finance concrete adaptation projects in poor countries.

The decision reached on Tuesday will see the creation of a 16-member board to administer the fund, majority of which will be representatives of developing and least developed countries.

“We wanted the fund to have its own financial mechanism to fast-track its efficiency while the UN’s Global Environmental Fund provides the interim secretariat,” Botswana negotiator, Mr Steven Monna said in an interview.

The resolution resembling Botswana’s blueprint to the last detail is expected to effect immediately as beneficiaries will be [continue reading]

source: SouthAfrica.info

14 December 2007

Local empowerment company Sea Ark Africa has signed an agreement with China Direct to provide it with advanced mariculture technology and remotely manage prawn farms in the southeastern Chinese city of Zhanjiang.

The technology transfer forms part of a larger R9.2-billion deal, in which Sea Ark is developing a 1 200 hectare giant prawn farming facility at the Coega Industrial Development Zone outside Port Elizabeth.

“Perfected in South Africa after 15 years of research in the US and locally, the technology deployed in China Direct’s facility in the Zhanjiang economic development zone will be built and managed online from Coega by [BuildAll and Sondolo IT],” Sea Ark says in a statement issued on Tuesday.

Sea Ark, project management company BuldAll and information technology company Sondolo IT all belong to the Bosasa Group of companies, a diversified broad-based black economic empowerment (BEE) organisation that [continue reading]

source: BOPA

13 December, 2007

BALI – Governments have been urged to act swiftly to implement energy efficiency steps that will help curb the release of greenhouse gas into the atmosphere.

International Energy Agency (IEA) executive director told journalists covering the UN climate change conference that “we do not have any time to lose, decisions need to be taken now and implementation has to begin immediately.” Mr Nobuo Tanaka noted that energy production and uses are a big part of the environmental pollution problem, as such he called on all energy sector players to deliver solutions.

The UN conference has 193 nations intending to kick-start negotiations of a new climate change agreement post 2012 when the current Kyoto protocol’s commitment period lapses.

“Much stronger action is needed everywhere to curb, stabilise and reduce man-made carbon dioxide emissions in the foreseeable future,” Mr Tanaka emphasised.

It is now 10 years since the signing of the Kyoto protocol and Mr Tanaka feels the agreement is [continue reading]

source: The Economic Times
15 Dec, 2007, 0101 hrs IST, TNN

MUMBAI: An Indian diamond company, Suashish Diamond (SDL), is setting up a $60-million diamond cutting and polishing centre in Botswana, currently the world’s largest producer of rough diamonds.

This is the first major attempt by an Indian company to ensure continued supply of rough diamonds by setting up cutting and polishing facilities abroad. Industry analysts consider this move strategic, as such a facility would ensure that the company would not be constrained in future by shortage of supply of rough diamonds. Botswana now supplies 35% of rough diamonds and its global market share is expected to go up to 50% in three years.

SDL managing director Ashish Goenka said the company was [continue reading]

source: SW Radio Africa

By Henry Makiwa
14 December 2007

There are serious health fears across Harare after reports of a cholera outbreak earlier this week.

According to independent health experts in the capital, the cholera outbreak has been created by the inability of the Harare City Council to provide residents with clean water. Cholera is an extreme diarrhoeal disease whose transmission in humans is mainly by ingestion of contaminated water or food. In its most severe form cholera is one of the most rapidly fatal illnesses.

Many Harare residents have been forced to drink unsafe water from streams and wells on the outskirts of the city. Complaints also abound that the Zimbabwe National Water Authority (ZINWA), is supplying people with untreated tap water. The state run ZINWA took [continue reading]

source: allAfrica
The Namibian (Windhoek)

14 December 2007
Posted to the web 14 December 2007

Brigitte Weidlich
Windhoek

NAMIBIA finally signed an interim trade pact with the European Union late on Wednesday night – having refused to do so twice – after securing some provisional trade assurances from Brussels during “difficult” negotiations.

“Ambassador Hanno Rumpf initialled the interim economic partnership agreement (IEPA) in Brussels on Wednesday night,” Deputy Trade and Industry Minister Bernhard Esau told reporters and a large number of representatives of the farming sector yesterday.

“However, we will continue negotiating on issues of concern to us like infant industry protection for our products and abolition of quantitative import restrictions for EU goods into Namibia.”

Under the deal Namibia will obtain duty-free and quota-free access for any products it wants to export to the 27 EU member states, but it has to provide reciprocal market access for EU goods by July 1 2008, according to [continue reading]