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Satchu's Rich Wrap-Up
 
 
Wednesday 19th of March 2014
 
Morning
Africa

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I thank the Chairman of @KCBGroup for the time today.

I thank H.E The Swedish Ambassador for Lunch and an always erudite discussion.

The Latest Daily PodCast can be found here on the Front Page of the site
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17-MAR-2014 :: Of Matters UK And The Scramble For Crimea
Africa


So yes London is booming and I think the city and by extension the UK
is a little like Dubai. Both cities have become safe havens in an
uncertain world.

Now lets turn to Ukraine and Crimea. The referendum is set to go one
way and in favour of Russia. In a delicious irony, President Putin is
invoking the R2P doctrine. The R2P doctrine stands for 'responsibility
to protect' ("RtoP" or "R2P") and was a new international security and
human rights norm to address the international community's failure to
prevent and stop genocides, war crimes, ethnic cleansing and crimes
against humanity.

It would be simply unconscionable for Putin to lose Crimea. It would
represent the castration of Russia as a geopolitical player.

It was Zbigniew Brzezinski who said:

"Ukraine, a new and important space on the Eurasian chessboard, is a
geopolitical pivot because its very existence as an independent
country helps to transform Russia. Without Ukraine, Russia ceases to
be a Eurasian empire."

"However, if Moscow regains control over Ukraine, with its 52 million
people and major resources as well as access to the Black Sea, Russia
automatically again regains the wherewithal to become a powerful
imperial state, spanning Europe and Asia."

The Ukraine crisis has seriously infected Russian assets. The Russians
might well have sold more than $100b of US treasuries in a counter
reaction over the last week or so.

read more





"You cannot call the same thing black today and white tomorrow," he declared to stormy applause, saying Western partners had "crossed the line" over Ukraine and behaved "irresponsibly".
Law & Politics


"Don't believe those who try to frighten you with Russia and who
scream that other regions will follow after Crimea," Putin said. "We
do not want a partition of Ukraine. We do not need this."

Setting out Moscow's view of the events that led to the overthrow of
Yanukovich in a popular uprising last month, Putin said the "so-called
authorities" in Kiev had stolen power in a coup and opened the way for
extremists who would stop at nothing.

Making clear Russia's concern at the possibility of the U.S.-led NATO
military alliance expanding into Ukraine, he declared: "I do not want
to be welcomed in Sevastopol (Crimean home of Russia's Black Sea
fleet) by NATO sailors."

Russian President Vladimir Putin accused the United States on Monday
of being guided in its foreign policy not by international law but by
the "rule of the gun."

http://www.reuters.com/article/2014/03/18/us-ukraine-crisis-putin-usa-idUSBREA2H0TE20140318

"Our Western partners headed by the United States prefer not to be
guided by international law in their practical policies, but by the
rule of the gun," he told a joint session of parliament.

"They have come to believe in their exceptionalism and their sense of
being the chosen ones. That they can decide the destinies of the
world, that it is only them who can be right."

read more


PUTIN LIVE: 'Our Western Partners Have Crossed A Red Line' With Ukraine
Law & Politics


A few hours ago, he signed a decree that recognized Crimea as an
independent state.

Putin began by saying that Crimea is intertwined with Russia.

"Everything is related to Russian history. ... [Crimea] is a fortress
and where the Russian Black Sea Fleet is in port."

"Crimea is a unique melting pot of traditions and culture and that's
why it looks ... like Russia."

Putin spoke about the "rehabilitation of ethnic Tartars," a minority
Muslim that makes up about 12% Crimea today after Soviet leader Joseph
Stalin's forcible deported of the entire population in 1944.

He then began talking about what he considers to be the lamentable
collapse of the Soviet Union.

"We all used to belong to the same country: The Soviet Union. ... The
Soviet Union has collapsed. The events happened in such a fast way
that many of the countries didn't realize ... When Crimea ended up in
a different state, Russia realized that not only Russia was robbed,
but Russia was robbed in broad daylight."

"Crimea is a Russian land."

"They used Crimea as a cow they milked ... and they didn't understand
the realities on the ground."

read more


Crimea sanctions unacceptable: Russian Foreign Minister Sergei Lavrov tells John Kerry VIA @dna
Law & Politics


Russia in fact punched first and hard with an apparent Liquidation of
$100b of marketable Treasury Securities.

Crimea sanctions unacceptable: Russian Foreign Minister Sergei Lavrov
tells John Kerry

http://www.dnaindia.com/world/report-crimea-sanctions-unacceptable-russian-foreign-minister-sergei-lavrov-tells-john-kerry-1970418

"(Crimea) republic residents made their democratic choice in line with
the international law and the United Nations charter, which Russia
accepts and respects," a Russian Foreign Ministry statement said,
"while the sanctions introduced by the United States and the European
Union are unacceptable and will not remain without consequences."

Lavrov's remarks echoed comments earlier on Tuesday by Putin who said
Western attempts to frighten Russia with sanctions would be viewed as
an act of aggression, and that Moscow would retaliate.

Kerry reiterated Washington's position that the referendum and the
takeover of Crimea were "illegal" and "unacceptable," State Department
spokeswoman Jen Psaki said.

"We don't accept them and there will continue to be costs and
consequences," she told a daily briefing. "We are continuing to
prepare additional sanctions and we haven't taken options off the
table."

Kerry told students at the State Department that an incursion by
Russia into eastern Ukraine would be "as egregious as any step I can
think of that can be taken by a country in today's world, particularly
by a country like Russia where so much is at stake.

"Now, I hope we don't get there," he added.

He likened the Crimea crisis to the lead-up to World War Two. "Today
is egregious enough, when you raise this nationalistic fervor which
could, in fact, infect in ways that could be very, very dangerous," he
said.

"All you have to do is go back and read in history of the lead-up to
World War Two and the passions that were released with that kind of
nationalistic fervor," he added.

He referred to the Soviet Union's meddling in Czechoslovakia and Poland.

"There's a tough history of things like Czechoslovakia in 1968 where
the alleged rationale for going into the country was to protect the
people in it," he said. "You can ask the Poles how they felt being
'protected' for all those years."

Vladimir Putin's aggressive foray into Eurasia, and the possibility of
a new cold war with the West, has actually enhanced rather than
lessened his popularity in Russia. Pankaj Mishra

http://www.bloombergview.com/articles/2014-03-17/putin-s-eurasian-fantasy

With the signing of the March 18th Treaty, that agreement is null and
void. Sevastopol including the Russian naval base become part of an
autonomous region within the Russian Federation.

http://www.globalresearch.ca/russia-extends-its-control-over-the-black-sea-and-strategic-waterways/5374021

Moreover, Crimea's territorial waters now belong to the Russian Federation.

read more


Iran has even more natural gas than Russia--more than anyone, in fact.
Law & Politics


At the moment Iran only exports gas through pipelines to Turkey and
Iraq. A permafrost between Europe and Russia could open markets
further to Iran's west (especially now the European Union is, somewhat
belatedly, thinking about ways to wean itself off the Kremlin's energy
teat).

An Iranian move into liquefied natural gas could come via a plant in
Oman, The Wall Street Journal's Benoit Faucon reports. This would
allow Tehran greater access to gas-hungry Far-Eastern markets and mean
Iran becomes part of an emerging Gulf-Asia energy relationship.

This would be good news for Japan, the world's biggest buyer of LNG.

read more


"We had thought it would be the United States that would lead the campaign against Iran," said Yaalon, who pointed to the Ukraine crisis as an example of Washington "showing weakness".
Law & Politics


Conclusions


President @BarackObama is not weak, he is subtle and very c21st and
deploys a sophisticated Template which includes, cyber, currency and
colour-coded Revolutions of all kinds.

In Ukraine, The Colour coded revolution overreached itself and met
with a formidable Adversary.

Putin is not Gaddafi or Ben-Ali or Bashar Assad who are/were Tin Gods
when you compare them to Putin in the Geopolitical Spectrum as it
were.

read more


Israel bombs Syrian posts over Golan attack on its troops
Law & Politics


 Israel attacked several Syrian military sites on Wednesday in
retaliation for a roadside bombing that wounded four of its troops on
the occupied Golan Heights on Tuesday, the Israeli military said.

It said targets included a Syrian military headquarters, a training
facility and artillery batteries. Aircraft carried out the overnight
strike, said Lieutenant-Colonel Peter Lerner, an Israeli military
spokesman. He described targets as military facilities on the
Syrian-held side of the Golan.

Israel captured the Golan from Syria in the 1967 war and annexed it in
a move not recognized abroad. Tuesday's wounding of the soldiers as
they patrolled the separation line on the strategic plateau marked
Israel's worst casualties there since an insurgency erupted in Syria
more than three years ago.

From Kiev to Beijing ... and Taipei Asia Times
http://www.atimes.com/atimes/China/CHIN-02-180314.html

A certain amount of attention, and rightly so, has been paid to the
discomfiture of the People's Republic of China (PRC) with Crimea
unilaterally declaring independence from Ukraine. The PRC abstained on
the UN Security Council condemnation of the vote, instead of
supporting Russia with a "nay". The PRC possesses or covets several
significant territories whose inhabitants, if given the opportunity,
might eagerly defy the One China policy to announce, organize, and
pass a referendum of independence: Tibet, Xinjiang, Hong Kong, Inner
Mongolia, Macau, and Taiwan.

The fact that the United States is also encouraging a similar campaign
against a legitimately elected but anti-American and vulnerable
government in Venezuela is another indication that the Ukraine coup
itself (if not the befuddled response to the subsequent Russian
pushback) was a matter of careful design, and not backed into by the
Obama administration in a fit of improvisation.

With Ukraine and Venezuela apparently demonstrating the US
determination to exploit popular discontent, political opposition, and
oligarch anxiety to overthrow target regimes, it would not be
surprising if the PRC regime decides it has more pressing priorities
than expanding political participation, loosening the leash on
opposition parties, allowing increased freedom of expression, or
assisting the journalists of Western prestige media in their practice
of adversarial soft power reporting inside China.

The real Asian game, however, might not be inside the People's
Republic of China, where the regime still keeps a firm thumb on
things. The PRC's most apparent vulnerability to a Ukraine-style coup
is on Taiwan.

Taiwan de jure independence is an existential threat to the PRC. That
is not because the PRC would "lose" the province of Taiwan which is de
facto independent and enmeshed in an intimate economic relationship
with the mainland.

It is because if Taiwan, a Han Chinese bastion, formally disassociated
itself from the PRC, and especially if/because independence was
understood to represent a repudiation of US and Western adherence to
the One China policy, PRC sovereignty would be fair game for the
regime's adversaries inside and outside of China, and ethnic regions
such as Tibet would be emboldened to demand independence themselves.

Tweets via the Africa CEO Forum @africaceoforum Geneva
https://twitter.com/search?q=%23ACF2014&src=hash

Africa CEO Forum @africaceoforum  17m Daphne Mashile-Nkosi, CEO
Kalagadi Manganese, "women are the backbone of the economy in Africa"
#ACF2014

pic.twitter.com/es8ZDhbSjQ

Bob Collymore @bobcollymore  42m
Private sector in Africa responsible for 90% employment, 75% output,
60% investment. #ACF2014

Africa CEO Forum @africaceoforum  9m
Ramesh Moochikals, @Olam: 32 of the 36 billion dollars produced in
Africa are exported today. Major issue. #ACF2014

pic.twitter.com/5gi4DsIN3n

read more


Whoever reached across the dimly lit cockpit of a Malaysia Airlines jet and clicked off a transponder to make Flight MH370 vanish from controllers' radars flew the plane into a navigational and technical black hole.
Law & Politics


By choosing that exact place and time to vanish into radar darkness
with 238 others on board, the person - presumed to be a pilot or a
passenger with advanced knowledge - appears to have acted only after
meticulous planning, according to aviation experts.

Understanding the sequence that led to the unprecedented plane hunt
widening across two vast tracts of territory north and south of the
Equator is key to grasping the motives of what Malaysian authorities
suspect was hijacking or sabotage.

By signing off from Malaysian airspace at 1.19 a.m. on March 8 (1719
GMT March 7) with a casual "all right, good night," rather than the
crisp radio drill advocated in pilot training, a person now believed
to be the co-pilot gave no hint of anything unusual.

Two minutes later, at 1.21 a.m. local time, the transponder - a device
identifying jets to ground controllers - was turned off in a move that
experts say could reveal a careful sequence.

"Every action taken by the person who was piloting the aircraft
appears to be a deliberate one. It is almost like a pilot's
checklist," said one senior captain from an Asian carrier with
experience of jets, including the Boeing 777.

The radio call does not prove it was the co-pilot who turned off the
transponder. Pilots say the usual practice is that the pilot not in
control of the plane talks on the radio.

Police have searched the premises of both the captain and co-pilot and
are checking the backgrounds of all passengers.

But whoever turned the transponder to "off," did so at a vulnerable
point between two airspace sectors when Malaysian and Vietnamese
controllers could easily assume the airplane was each others'
responsibility.

"The predictable effect was to delay the raising of the alarm by
either party," David Learmount, operations and safety editor at Flight
International, wrote in an industry blog.

Whether or not pilots knew it, the jet was just then in a technically
obscure sweet spot, according to a top radar expert.

Air traffic controllers use secondary radar which works by talking to
the transponder. Some air traffic control systems also blend in some
primary radar, which uses a simple echo.

But primary radar signals fade faster than secondary ones, meaning
even a residual blip would have vanished for controllers and even
military radar may have found it difficult to identify the 777 from
other ghostly blips, said radar expert Hans Weber.

"Turning off the transponder indicates this person was highly
trained," said Weber, of consultancy TECOP International.

"It was a red-eye flight. Most people - the passengers and the crew -
just want to rest," a Malaysia Airlines stewardess said. "Unless there
was a reason to panic, if someone had taken control of the aircraft,
they would not have noticed anything."

At some point between 1.07 a.m. and 1.37 a.m., investigators believe
someone switched off another system called ACARS designed to transmit
maintenance data back to the ground.

The explanation of the timing has shifted after Malaysian officials
initially said it was turned off before the pilot last spoke at 1:19
a.m. But it could have been done later as well, although before 1:37
a.m., when the system was to make another transmission, which it did
not.

By itself, switching off ACARS was unusual but would not necessarily
have raised alarms at the airline and the passengers would not have
known something was amiss, said some of the six pilots contacted by
Reuters, none of whom agreed to be named.

"Occasionally, there are gaps in the communications systems and the
guys in ground operations may not think much of it initially. It would
be a while before they try to find out what was wrong," said one
captain with an Asian carrier.

Cutting the datalink would not have been easy. Instructions are not in
the Flight Crew Operating Manual, one pilot said.

Circuit-breakers used to disable the system are in a bay reached
through a hatch in the floor next to the lefthand front exit, close to
a galley used to prepare meals.

Most pilots said it would be impossible to turn off ACARS from inside
the cockpit, although two people did not rule it out.

After the transponder was turned off, the northeast-bound jet took a
northwestern route from the sea off Kota Bahru in eastern Malaysia to
Penang Island. It was last detected on military radar around 200 miles
northwest of Penang.

Even that act of going off course may not have caused alarm at first
if it was handled gradually, pilots said.

"Nobody pays attention to these things unless they are aware of the
direction that the aircraft was heading in," said one first officer
who has flown with Malaysia Airlines.

The airline said it had reconstructed the event in a simulator to try
to figure out how the jet vanished and kept flying for what may have
been more than seven hours.

Pilots say whoever was then in control may have kept the radio on in
silent mode to hear what was going on around him, but would have
avoided restarting the transponder at all costs.

"That would immediately make the aircraft visible ... like a bright
light. Your registration, height, altitude and speed would all become
visible," said an airline captain.

After casting off its identity, the aircraft set investigators a
puzzle that has yet to be solved. It veered either northwards or
southwards, within an hour's flying time of arcs stretching from the
Caspian to the southern Indian Ocean.

The best way to avoid the attention of military radars would have been
to fly at a fixed altitude, on a recognized flight path and at
cruising speed without changing course, pilots say.

"The military radar controllers would have seen him moving on a fixed
line, figured that it was a commercial aircraft at a high altitude,
and not really a danger especially if he was on a recognized flight
path," said one pilot.

"Some countries would ask you to identify yourself, but you are flying
through the night and that is the time when the least attention is
being paid to unidentified aircraft. As long as the aircraft is not
flying towards a military target or point, they may not bother with
you."

Although investigators refused on Monday to be drawn into theories,
few in the industry believe a 250-tonne passenger jet could run amok
without expert skills or preparation.

"Whoever did this must have had lots of aircraft knowledge, would have
deliberately planned this, had nerves of steel to be confident enough
to get through primary radar without being detected and been confident
enough to control an aircraft full of people," a veteran airline
captain told Reuters.

read more



NSA surveillance program reaches 'into the past' to retrieve, replay phone calls [and they cannot find #MH370]
Law & Politics


The National Security Agency has built a surveillance system capable
of recording "100 percent" of a foreign country's telephone calls,
enabling the agency to rewind and review conversations as long as a
month after they take place, according to people with direct knowledge
of the effort and documents supplied by former contractor Edward
Snowden.

A senior manager for the program compares it to a time machine -- one
that can replay the voices from any call without requiring that a
person be identified in advance for surveillance.

read more


A brief history of innovation - graphic of the day
International Trade


Afghanistan: as China forges new alliances, a new Great Game has begun

http://www.theguardian.com/commentisfree/2014/mar/18/afghanistan-china-new-great-game-united-states

As the disappearance of flight MH370 dominated the headlines across
China, a party of senior US officials and AfPak experts arrived in
Beijing last week for discreet talks with their Chinese counterparts.
They were there as part of a little reported but crucial new
Sino-American dialogue on Afghanistan, discussing the role China could
play there after the US withdrawal. It is an important development in
the new Great Game that is already realigning the delicate
geopolitical balance of the region.

The public standoff between the world's two greatest military powers
in the South China Sea over the Senkaku/Diaoyu islands has disguised a
growing detente between them both over central Asia. "The Chinese are
very much aware that we are now on the same page in Afghanistan," I
was told by a senior state department official with the delegation.
"Our interests are now in almost complete alignment there."

The fledgling dialogue received a huge boost earlier this month when
China suffered what one newspaper affiliated with the party described
as "China's 9/11". A knife attack by a group of eight militants at
Kunming station in Yunan province left 29 dead and 140 injured. The
authorities stated that the assailants were Uighurs, the
Turkic-speaking Muslim minority, many of whom want independence for
the northwest region of Xinjiang - or East Turkestan, as Uighurs call
it.

A supermassive black hole six billion light years from Earth is
spinning extremely rapidly.

http://chandra.harvard.edu/press/14_releases/press_030514.html

read more


Currency Markets at a Glance WSJ
World Currencies


Euro 1.3922
Dollar Index 79.43
Japan Yen 101.56
Swiss Franc 0.8740
Pound 1.6592
Aussie 0.9121
India Rupee 61.139
South Korea Won 1071.55
Brazil Real 2.3322
Egypt Pound 6.9614
South Africa Rand 10.7356

Dollar Index 3 Month Chart INO 79.43

http://quotes.ino.com/charting/index.html?s=NYBOT_DX&v=d3&t=c&a=50&w=1

Euro versus the Dollar 3 Month Chart 1.3922

http://quotes.ino.com/charting/index.html?s=FOREX_EURUSD&v=d3&t=c&a=50&w=1

Dollar Yen 3 Month Chart INO 101.56

http://quotes.ino.com/charting/index.html?s=FOREX_USDJPY&v=d3&t=c&a=50&w=1

Third Place, Singapore, National Awards: In the same vein as the
Metabolists and Brutalists, golden mile complex, formerly known as Woh
Hup complex, is a Metabolist inspired building in Singapore built in
1973. ((c) Daniel Chia, 2014 Sony World Photography Awards)

http://www.theatlantic.com/infocus/2014/03/winners-of-the-2014-sony-world-photography-awards-part-i/100700/

read more



The World Bank's lead financial sector specialist Arnaud Dornel told the conference that annual infrastructure needs across Africa are estimated at $93 billion - 15% of Africa's gross domestic product (GDP).
Africa


"Eurobonds have become like stock exchanges, private jets and
presidential palaces. Every African leader wants to have one," said
one investor, asking not to be named.

http://www.reuters.com/article/2014/03/18/us-africa-debt-sustainability-analysis-idUSBREA2H08B20140318

As African states line up to join the growing club of dollar bond
issuers, economists and analysts warn of a slide back into
indebtedness that could undo recent economic gains and create a
"Eurobond curse" to match the distorting "resource curse".

In 2007, Ghana became the first African beneficiary of debt relief to
tap international capital markets, issuing a $750 million 10-year
Eurobond. Since then, previously debt-burdened countries, such as
Senegal, Nigeria, Zambia and Rwanda, have also put their names on the
list of bond issuers.

Up to 30 low-income sub-Saharan African countries had their debts
reduced under the IMF and World Bank's Highly Indebted Poor Countries
(HIPC) initiative, which was later supplemented by the Multilateral
Debt Relief Initiative (MDRI).

An estimated $100 billion of debt was wiped out, easing countries'
onerous debt burdens, often the result of loans taken on by corrupt
regimes. These had meant more being spent on debt service payments
than on health and education combined.

In Ghana, Uganda, Mozambique, Senegal, Niger, Malawi, Benin and Sao
Tome and Principe, debt levels are creeping back up. If all continue
to borrow and grow at current rates their debt indicators could be
back to pre-relief levels within a decade.

Others with rapidly rising debt ratios include Ethiopia, Tanzania and
Burkina Faso.

Nevertheless, the study finds that on average there has only been a
modest rise in debt-to-GDP ratios in nearly a decade.

In the 26 African HIPC beneficiaries studied, nominal public debt fell
from a GDP-weighted average of 104 percent of GDP before relief, to 27
percent by 2006 when most had received full debt relief. Half a decade
later the ratio was at 34 percent.

In a sign of waning market confidence, yields on Ghana's sovereign
debt are higher than for any other African country with an actively
traded international bond, at around 9 percent for its 2023 Eurobond
and over 20 percent for domestic debt.

Zambia's story is in some ways a slow-motion version of Ghana's.
Africa's biggest copper producer, which sold a hugely oversubscribed
debut $750 million Eurobond in 2012 and plans to return to the market,
was also downgraded by Fitch last year.

Zambia's debt is around 30 percent of GDP, still quite low. The
government needs to spend on roads and energy but economists worry its
current pace of borrowing cannot be sustained.

"I wonder and sometimes fear about a Eurobond curse, particularly in
sub-Saharan Africa, where all of a sudden you get what seems like a
windfall of money and you end up with policymaking deteriorating," he
said.

The challenge for governments will be to ensure that borrowed funds
are invested wisely and not mismanaged.

South Africa All Share Bloomberg +2.41% 2014

http://www.bloomberg.com/quote/JALSH:IND

Dollar versus Rand 3 Month Chart INO 10.73455

http://quotes.ino.com/charting/index.html?s=FOREX_USDZAR&t=c&a=50&w=1&v=d3

A South African anti-corruption watchdog unveils a report on Wednesday
on a $21 million state-funded "security upgrade" to President Jacob
Zuma's private home that a newspaper says included a swimming pool and
cattle enclosure.

http://uk.reuters.com/article/2014/03/19/uk-safrica-zuma-idUKBREA2I00M20140319

If Public Protector Thuli Madonsela's long-awaited findings concur
with leaked excerpts in the Mail and Guardian daily, they could damage
the scandal-plagued Zuma and the ruling African National Congress
(ANC) in an election only six weeks away.

The newspaper said Madonsela's draft report, entitled "Opulence on a
Grand Scale", found Zuma had derived "substantial" personal gain from
the home improvements paid for by the state and recommended he should
repay some of the money.

The improvements included a visitors' lounge, amphitheatre, cattle
enclosure and swimming pool, referred to in official documents as a
"fire pool" on the pretext it could double up as a water reservoir for
fire-fighters, the paper said.

The leaked report provoked derisive cartoons of Zuma sipping cocktails
and relaxing in his "fire pool", and reinforced the perception of
runaway corruption in Africa's biggest economy during Zuma's first
term in office.

Despite voter concerns about graft and shoddy public services, the ANC
is almost certain to win the May 7 election, handing the 71-year-old
Zuma another five years at the helm.

The extent of his unpopularity in urban areas was highlighted by the
boos that greeted him at a memorial to Nelson Mandela at
Johannesburg's Soccer City stadium in December, although he still
enjoys huge support in the countryside.

@SAPresident Jacob Zuma by Henry Leutwyler

http://assets.upstart.bizjournals.com/images/site/editorial/magazine/zuma-main-vert-large.jpg?v=1

Egypt Pound versus The Dollar 3 Month Chart INO 6.9612

http://quotes.ino.com/charting/index.html?s=FOREX_USDEGP&v=d3&t=c&a=50&w=1

Egypt EGX30 Bloomberg +21.69% 2014

http://www.bloomberg.com/quote/CASE:IND

8,196.83 +35.78 +0.44%

Nigeria All Share Bloomberg -9.51% [5 month Lows]

http://www.bloomberg.com/quote/NGSEINDX:IND

Ghana Stock Exchange Composite Index Bloomberg +11.53% 2014

http://www.bloomberg.com/quote/GGSECI:IND

Zambia's kwacha fell a fourth day, the world's worst performer after
Ukraine's hryvnia, as a dollar shortage in Africa's second-biggest
copper producer persisted.

http://www.bloomberg.com/news/2014-03-18/zambia-s-kwacha-weakens-most-in-world-after-ukraine-s-currency.html

"Local demand for the dollar, net dollar outflows from emerging
markets and negative fundamentals, such as weakening copper prices
continue to weigh heavily on the Zambian currency," Zambia National
Commercial Bank Plc analysts, including Virginia Mwalilino, wrote in
an e-mailed note today. "The local currency is expected to remain on
the back-foot."

The kwacha retreated 1.1 percent to trade at a record low 6.21 per
dollar by 10:50 a.m. in Lusaka, the capital. The kwacha dropped almost
11 percent this year, the fourth-worst performer of all currencies
tracked by Bloomberg and the biggest decline in Africa.

A sharp increase in mining production will drive economic growth in
Democratic Republic of Congo to around 9.5 percent this year, one of
the highest rates in Africa, Prime Minister Augustin Matata Ponyo said

http://in.reuters.com/article/2014/03/18/congo-democratic-matataponyo-idINL6N0MF3BH20140318

Congo to Debut 3-Month Bonds as Seeks End to Dollar Dependence

http://www.bloomberg.com/news/2014-03-18/congo-to-debut-3-month-bonds-as-seeks-end-to-dollar-dependence.html

The Democratic Republic of Congo, which overtook Zambia as Africa's
biggest copper producer last year, will offer three-month Treasury
bills for the first time as the central bank tries to wean the country
off using the dollar.

The sale of the securities will add to existing weekly auctions of 7-
and 28-day debt, Plante Kibadhi Mbuka, a spokesman for the bank, said
by phone from the capital, Kinshasa on March 17. The central bank has
yet to set a date for the first offering, which will meet increasing
demand for domestic-currency deposits, he said.

 As the $18 billion economy stabilizes, policy makers are encouraging
the use of the Congolese franc for greater control over monetary
policy. The domestic currency makes up only about 20 percent of bank
balance sheets, according to the Congolese Banking Association, with
the rest being denominated in dollars.

"The Congolese franc is maintaining its value and more people want to
keep money in local currency," he said. "Commercial banks have been
soliciting us to offer longer-term bonds."

The franc weakened 1.4 percent against the dollar over the past four
years through December 2013, compared with a 51 percent decline over
the previous four-year period, the worst performer through 2009 among
African currencies, according to data compiled by Bloomberg. The
economy may expand 9.5 percent this year, Prime Minister Augustin
Matata Ponyo's office said March 4. The International Monetary Fund
estimates 2014 growth will be 8.7 percent, compared with 8.5 percent
last year.

Last month, the central bank set an inflation target of 3.7 percent
this year, after an average 1 percent increase last year. In the
absence of shocks, the 2014 rate may be about 1.5 percent, the bank
said in a statement March 14.

The central bank kept its benchmark interest rate at 2 percent this
month after it reached a high of 70 percent in the beginning of 2010,
when inflation hovered at about 40 percent, Kibadhi said. Commercial
loan rates in Congo are often above 10 percent, which limits lending,
he said. The franc gained 0.2 percent yesterday to close at 921.5001
per dollar for a decline this year of 0.2 percent.

Congo's efforts to stem the use of the dollar is being replicated in
other African nations. Neighboring Angola last year introduced a
foreign-exchange law that has halved the amount of dollars auctioned
by the central bank, while Ghana last month announced a clampdown on
dollar sales to prop up the domestic currency.

Mining contributes approximately 80 percent of Congo's annual export
revenue and accounts for about 30 percent of gross domestic product,
according to the prime minister's office. Copper production topped
900,000 metric tons in 2013, a record for the central African nation,
according to the IMF. CRU Group ranked Congo the biggest producer in
Africa and the world's sixth-largest last year.

Somali Islamist militants drove a car bomb at a hotel in a town in
central Somalia that was being used by African Union and Somali
military forces, a resident and the militant group said.

http://www.reuters.com/article/2014/03/18/us-somalia-attacks-idUSBREA2H0FC20140318

Hussein Nur, a resident in Bulobarde town, said a car bomb exploded
late on Monday at the Camalow hotel, and this was followed by fighting
between troops and militants that lasted several hours. He was
speaking on Tuesday morning, but his line cut before he could provide
further details.

AMISOM could not immediately be reached for comment.

"First, a mujahid (holy warrior) with a car bomb entered the hotel,
followed by two well-armed fighters who sprayed bullets," said Sheikh
Abdiasis Abu Musab, Al Shabaab's military operation spokesman, told
Reuters on Tuesday.

"My government will not tolerate such acts of political violence to
destabilise the peaceful management of elections and to threaten the
peace and security of our people," Banda said in a statement.

http://www.google.com/hostednews/afp/article/ALeqM5isfvlyW6vUbALHLL6oV_5B-SBpgQ?docId=2f82f457-4c6e-40fd-bd41-c916205b9a62

"This barbaric act was politically motivated. All those that are
directly or indirectly involved should face the wrath of the law."

Violence erupted on Sunday shortly after an election rally led by
President Joyce Banda at Goliyati village in a stronghold of her rival
Peter Mutharika of the former ruling Democratic Progressive Party.

A police officer was axed to death and a protester was shot dead in
clashes with stone-throwing opposition activists after police fired
tear gas to disperse the hostile crowd.

The protester was killed when police fired into the crowd in what a
police spokeswoman described as "self defence".

The poor southern African country heads to the polls on May 20 for
presidential, parliamentary and local elections.

Protesters' stones hit within 100 metres (yards) of the podium where
Banda and senior party officials were sitting, presidential spokesman
Steven Nhlane said.

Banda said she was "saddened by the killing of a police officer who
was enforcing peace, calm, law and order".

read more


COOP Bank reports FY 2013 Earnings here [I will analyse these results overnight]
Kenyan Economy


Par Value:                  1/-
Closing Price:           19.10
Total Shares Issued:          4190840000.00
Market Capitalization:        80,045,044,000
EPS:             1.84
PE:                 10.380

Carbacid reports H1 2013 PAT -11.001% EPS -40.645% Earnings here

http://www.rich.co.ke/rcdata/company.php?i=MzA%3D

Par Value:                  5/-
Closing Price:           37.00
Total Shares Issued:          254851988.00
Market Capitalization:        9,429,523,556
EPS:             2.80
PE:               13.214

Local carbon dioxide company.

H1 Earnings through 31st January 2014 versus 6 months through 31st January 2013

H1 Turnover 473.761m versus 546.713m -13.343%
H1 Cost of Sales [180.436m] versus [222.197m]
H1 Gross Profit 293.325m versus 324.516m -.9.611%
H1 Admin Expenses [46.017m] versus [54.315m]
H1 Operating Profit 259.413m versus 282.304m
H1 Finance Income 39.509m 47.968m
H1 PBT 317.787m versus 358.464m -11.3475%
H1 PAT 235.162m versus 264.231m -11.001%
Proposed Dividend per share 0.40 versus 0.60 [restated]
H1 EPS 0.92 versus 1.55 -40.645%

Company Commentary

''The Exceptional Demand experienced last year in the southern Africa
market for Carbon Dioxide has eased''

Conclusions

Softer than I for one expected. Its probably a little richly priced right now.

Kenya Caps Borrowing at $1.75 Billion Before Eurobond Sales

http://www.bloomberg.com/news/2014-03-18/kenya-caps-borrowing-at-1-75-billion-before-eurobond-sales-1-.html

Kenya's Treasury capped foreign borrowing that includes the country's
first planned Eurobond at $1.75 billion in the fiscal year through
June, according to a debt strategy document.

The size of non-concessional borrowing is consistent with a ceiling
set under an International Monetary Fund program that ended in January
and is meant to "safeguard debt sustainability levels," the Treasury
said in the document e-mailed today from the capital, Nairobi.

The Eurobond will push Kenya's total stock of debt to 53.3 percent of
gross domestic product by June from 51.8 percent at the end of
December, according to the document.

After a series of delays since September, Kenya is completing the
paperwork to offer its maiden Eurobond, in which Treasury Secretary
Henry Rotich has said the government targets to raise as much as $2
billion. Rotich said March 10 he expected approvals from foreign
exchanges where the Eurobond will be issued last week and to announce
a schedule of roadshows this week.

Kenya has no plans to follow up the debut sovereign bond with another
in the fiscal year that starts July 1, according to the document.

The debt will serve as benchmark for domestic corporates to tap
foreign funding, the Treasury said. Companies including Kenya Power
Ltd., country's sole electricity distributor, ARM Cement Ltd., the
second-largest cement-maker, and Kenya Electricity Generating Co.,
East Africa's biggest power producer, have all said they may consider
following the government by selling Eurobonds.

Government debt repayments are expected to surge to almost 700 billion
shillings in 2015 from about 120 billion shillings this year as
short-term government securities sold in the year through June are
redeemed.

"The uptake of domestic debt will be reduced to cut-back on rises in
interest costs and the rapid growth of the debt stock," the Treasury
said in the document.

The Treasury also expects debt-stock increasing on account of newly
created county-level governments seeking to borrow to support
development projects. The central government is required by law to
guarantee such debt. Guarantees of debt to the energy industry, of
which credit to five independent power producers has already been
guaranteed by government, is also expected to increase debt, according
to the debt strategy.

The Treasury said guaranteed debt stood at $505 million at the end of December.

The Kenyan economy grew an estimated 5.1 percent last year, slower
than the government's earlier forecast of as much as 6 percent. By
2017, the expansion is expected to reach 7 percent, according to a
budget policy statement.

And of course, there is our big Wembley stadium moment with the
eurobond, which is now imminent 20th January 2014

http://www.rich.co.ke/media/docs/038NSX2001.pdf

I incline to the view that the Kenya government should slot the
Eurobond market the full $2bn. This eurobond issue will release the
pressure cooker that is the domestic bond and interest rate markets--we
should see a good rally in interest rates.

04-NOV-2013 ::Kenya joins Africa's Eurobond League

http://www.rich.co.ke/media/docs/039NSX0411.pdf

Kenya Shilling versus The Dollar Live ForexPros 86.597

http://j.mp/5jDOot

Nairobi All Share Bloomberg  +5.13% 2014

http://www.BLOOMBERG.COM/quote/NSEASI:IND

Nairobi ^NSE20 Bloomberg +0.20% 2014

http://j.mp/ajuMHJ

Every Listed Share can be interrogated here

http://www.rich.co.ke/rcdata/nsestocks.php

read more




 
 
by Aly Khan Satchu (www.rich.co.ke)
 
 
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March 2014
 
 
 
 
 
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