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Bitter-Sweet Sugar: Cartels total control and inaction of Jubilee – Contaminated imports for profits!

We can wonder and think, who in their right mind orders contaminated agricultural products, rebrand it and sell it on the open with a clear conscious. That is what should bugle us right now. That the Kenyan Authorities together with the Sugar Cartels are accepting this and profiting on it. If they hadn’t, they wouldn’t have ordered, imported and tried to sell it on the market to the consumers. That is what is up and happen as the minor stops of it. The people should be worried about the authorities and what they are exposed too on the daily basis. When they cannot even trust the white sugar they are consuming.

The Kenyan people should worry, that the illegal imports through Kismaayo of Somalia, the illegal cartels of Mombasa and other places are highly-connected has pocketed key figures of industry, ports and in the ministries. If it wasn’t so, they would have had more trouble with the law. They wouldn’t just take a load of contaminated sugar, they would have ceased more and banned this trade. However, the government are doing little except tough talk. Even Cabinet Secretary Fred Matiang’i is supposed to die over this, but he will not stand-by his side-dish. So I doubt it.

It is like the Jubilee knows about the ill they are getting in, thinking of the profits and of the friendly owners of the millers. Without thinking about the citizens who possible consuming it and how it might hurt them. If it is contaminated, it might damage the body and even cause fatal ills for someone. Then someone dies over something as petty as illegal and deadly sugar. Has that even been considered? Wouldn’t that been an avoidable tragedy?

That the government, the agencies and the authorities in general haven’t delivered is obvious, while this is not only hurting the average citizen. Who could be worried about going to the market and supermarket to pick a kilo of sugar. But also the farmers who produce for the millers. They don’t know if the millers and the authorities is helping to sell second-level or third-level products from afar. While rebranding it with their labels, like the ones that comes from the local producers. Then the public will loose trust with the millers who makes this sugar.

This here is the proof of how not to run, how not to delegate and not to use the oversight role as government, as they are misusing power, being in bed with the cartels and not giving a fig about the population. Because if they know they are illegally importing through Mombasa and Kismaayo, the authorities should stop it and get rid of it. Not let it go, let it be rebranded and made ready for the market. Because then the suppliers, the supermarkets and the consumers all loose on it. Only the Sugar Cartels and the Importers earns on it.

They are spiking, they are playing and coming with a dangerous product that shouldn’t be consumed by people. It should be used for matters, if not just confiscated and destroyed at arrival. Than ask for reparation of damages and possible breaches of contract, as they we’re not given edible sugar. But dangerous ones, that shouldn’t be produced in the first place. Peace.

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KCC dispute: GÉCAMINES reaches an agreement with KATANGA GROUP, and defines with GLENCORE the foundations for a new win-win partnership (13.06.2018)

LUBUMBASHI, Democratic Republic of Congo, June 13, 2018 – On 12 June 2018, GÉCAMINES (www.Gecamines.cd), together with its subsidiary SOCIÉTÉ IMMOBILIÈRE DU CONGO (“SIMCO”), entered into with KATANGA MINING LIMITED and some of its affiliated companies (the “KATANGA GROUP”) as well as their joint company KAMOTO COPPER COMPANY (“KCC”), a settlement agreement (the “Agreement”).

Under the terms of the Agreement, the following goals and results are targeted, among others:

  • KCC’s net equity will be restored in accordance with applicable laws ;
  • KCC’s indebtedness towards the GLENCORE group will be reduced from 9 billion USD down to 3.45 billion USD as at 1 January 2018;
  • Interest rates applicable on intra-group loans are revised and shall no longer exceed 6% per year;
  • On the basis of KCC’s current business plan, as early as the 2019 fiscal year, GÉCAMINES will start, for the first time, receiving dividends, which assessed cumulated amount should exceed 2 billion USD over the next ten years;
  • The profits will allow for the payment of corporate taxes being likely to significantly contribute to the replenishment the Congolese State’s treasury;
  • A better valuation, in the future, of GÉCAMINES’ contribution of the copper and cobalt deposits to the partnership through a significant increase of the amount per ton of the pas de porte, from 35 USD to 110 USD, and which can reach 170 USD in certain scenarios;
  • A significant increase of the valuation of GÉCAMINES’ ownership in KCC, which value was until then nil due to the high level of indebtedness of the company;
  • The waiver by KCC to the benefit of the JORC certified reserves amounting to 3,992,185 tCu and 205,629 tCo (the “Reserves”), releasing GÉCAMINES from its obligation to deliver the Reserves or, failing that, to pay a counter-value of a maximum amount of 285 million USD;
  • The payment by the KATANGA GROUP of a settlement indemnity (150 million USD) in favor GÉCAMINES; and
  • The withdrawal by GÉCAMINES and SIMCO, at closing, from the judicial proceeding initiated before the Commercial Court of Kolwezi on 20 April 2018.

GÉCAMINES welcomes the outcome of the discussions with the KATANGA GROUP and its majority shareholder GLENCORE PLC, and the new foundations now set for the partnership, with a view to an effective sharing of wealth, with immediate financial benefits for all the stakeholders, and in particular the Democratic Republic of the Congo and the affected communities. GÉCAMINES hopes that upcoming negotiations with other partners and companies will be conducted in a similar open and respectful climate, and will reach the same satisfactory outcome.

Opinion: Trump impose tariffs on Steel & Aluminum from the EU, another proof that the world cannot trust the US anymore!

The world doesn’t need enemies, it already have Trump, President Trump. He doesn’t care and shows no tact, no mercy and no sort of dialogue. That is proven again. Now that he has over night decided to impose tariffs on Aluminum and Steel from the European Union (EU). It is like Trump wants the US to be alone in the world. That is what he is getting closer to every single day.

When your not making sure the friends of United States gets to trade with reasonable tariffs, then who do you let do that? Why does the United States think they are so special that they can hit another continent like nothing. This is just like they pulled out of the Paris Agreement on the Climate, as the US don’t want to part of the global fight against climate change. We also seen the US has pulled out of the Iran agreement, making things worse in the Middle East. That is done while the US Embassy was moved to Jerusalem and weapons delivered to Saudi Arabia. This is all decisions that makes the world more fragile and hits the nerves of the regions.

Now, the EU is imposed tariffs, which are done because of Trump’s imaginary vision of supremacy, instead he is losing end. As people knows with every day, they cannot trust the United States. Even Angela Merkel said that during April 2018. There is more and more proof, that the world cannot trust Trump and the US Government. It is erratic and unstable, it is a house of cards.

President Trump policies are short-sighted and without vision of consequences. The US will not salvage this industry, this will just make the products made with this more expensive before the industry get better sights and hired more educated people to work in the industry. You cannot just build steel mills over night and nether have the educated engineers like that too. This isn’t making copyrights on random products, this is actually producing and making them.

I don’t think that Trump knows this, he thinks of ancient ways and wants to be Cesar and rule everything without any consequences. But Trump should know that the EU will react to this, they will put reactionary tariffs on products and American goods valued the same as the industries they hit in the EU. So that the different partners are making sure the Americans get to feel it too.

The US should know, that all of this doesn’t make friends, but more people looking at them and mind boggling thinking. The US Government, we cannot trust or really count on. They are just using everyone and making sure the rest is hit. While the US wants to get away without any responsibility. But the reality will hit them, when the EU answers with imposing tariffs on US goods too. That would be a natural reaction. Hopefully hit a nerve with the President and his allies. Since that was what the EU planned in the past to answer it.

Let’s see how this goes. But it is not a good look. Only making things more hostile and letting the world know. The US cannot be trusted, they are misusing their position and will only make the global diplomacy harder. Peace.

Robert Kyagulanyi MP aka Bobi Wine – Labor Day Message 2018 (01.05.2018)

Today is the INTERNATIONAL LABOUR DAY.
We celebrate every Ugandan worker home and abroad whose labour sustains our mother land.

The men and women who dig the land from where we get food. The women who by 4:00am are in our markets selling commodities. The men who travel different routes transporting us in taxis and on boda bodas. Our citizens who put on uniform and stay up in the night to keep us safe. Our health workers who without proper facilities and equipments do everything in their power to treat us. The midwives who must use anything at their disposal to help our mothers bring new life. Our teachers who, despite little pay still make it to class every day to teach our children. And yes, all Ugandans whether in the formal or informal sectors, who work hard and earn their bread from their sweat- you guys are the champions: the heroes of our nation. HAPPY LABOUR DAY.

And Mama, those who simply exploit our people are also here. Those who impose taxes on anything and everything in the name of increasing the tax base when in actual sense they are just increasing their stealing base. Those who milk the tax payer dry. Those who have no compassion for the poor person, the common person. Those who undermine the sweat of our people. Mama, all of them are here. Give us a signal on what message to give to them on this Labour Day.

South Africa: Section 232 Investigation by the United States of America on Steel and Aluminium Products (12.03.2018)

South Africa’s exports to the US on steel amounted to US$950 million in 2017 and accounted for 1.4% of U.S.’s global imports.

PRETORIA, South Africa, March 12, 2018 – The South African Government has noted the announcement of the President of the United States of America, Donald Trump on 8 March 2018 that he has signed proclamations to impose a 10 percent ad valorem tariff on aluminnium articles and a 25 percent ad valorem tariff on steel articles.

It was further announced that the United States (US) will consider specific requests from affected domestic parties, to exclude from any adopted import restrictions those steel articles for which the Secretary of Commerce determines there is a lack of sufficient US production capacity of comparable products, or to exclude steel articles from such restrictions for specific national security-based considerations.

The proclamations make a provision for any country with which the US has a security relationship to discuss with the US alternative ways to address the threatened impairment of the national security caused by imports from that country. Should the US and that country arrive at a satisfactory alternative means to address the threat to the national security, the US President may remove or modify the restriction on steel articles imports from that country and, if necessary, make any corresponding adjustments to the tariff as it applies to other countries as the national security interests require.

In relation to aluminium, the products to be affected are defined in the Harmonized Tariff Schedule (HTS) as: (a) unwrought aluminum (HTS 7601); (b) aluminum bars, rods, and profiles (HTS 7604); (c) aluminum wire (HTS 7605); (d) aluminum plate, sheet, strip, and foil (flat rolled products) (HTS 7606 and 7607); (e) aluminum tubes and pipes and tube and pipe fitting (HTS 7608 and 7609); and (f) aluminum castings and forgings (HTS 7616.99.51.60 and 7616.99.51.70), including any subsequent revisions to these HTS classifications.

The products affected in relation to steel are defined at the Harmonized Tariff Schedule (HTS) 6-digit level as: 7206.10 through 7216.50, 7216.99 through 7301.10, 7302.10, 7302.40 through 7302.90, and 7304.10 through 7306.90, including any subsequent revisions to these HTS classifications.

In addition, the Secretary of Commerce is expected to publish the Federal Register on the appeal process for US buyers to apply for exclusion within 10 days. The tariffs will be implemented on 23 March 2018, if no alternative arrangement is agreed to with individual countries.

South Africa is studying the proclamations and its implications for the domestic industry in South Africa. South Africa’s exports to the US on steel amounted to US$950 million in 2017 and accounted for 1.4% of U.S.’s global imports. In the case of aluminium, the SA exports were US$375 million in 2017, accounting for 1.6% of US imports from all global suppliers. It is clear that South Africa’s exports do not impose a threat to US industry and jobs. The SA exports are in some cases used as inputs into further processes in the US manufacturing sector thus in fact contributing to US jobs and production.

The Department of Trade and Industry (the dti) is fully engaged with the matter and continues to have discussions with the US on this issue. A formal submission will also be made to the US as is provided for in the proclamations.

Somalia: An Open Letter to the Somali Federal Cabinet (03.04.2018)

Opinion: Now that the World Bank has new priorities, they will most likely not loan to the pipelines in East Africa!

 

There is certain movements that will strike as more expensive for the East African Community (EAC). This being for the Government of Uganda (GoU) and the Government of Kenya (GoK), who has big plans of petroleum pipelines from their oil-fields and to the coast. That being from Turkana to Lamu Port. While the Ugandan oil goes from Hoima to Tanga Port in Tanzania. Both development and industrial projects will have issues with the funding. The World Bank has supported massive infrastructure projects in both countries.

Therefore, for the two counties big development and oil industry, this is giant set-back, since they have to find funding and loans for the pipelines on the open market. Even with higher interests and making the profits of it lesser, than it would have been with a World Bank loan. It would not hurt the pocket as much as it does on the open market. The banks wants more profits themselves and also make sure they are paid-in-full.

With all this in mind. There are speculations, but first. Parts of the self-answering service. Before we look at the reactions in Kenya and Uganda. All of are important, as the state is involved in the licensing and building the pipelines. They are directly into the development and procurement of the pipelines. That is why this is big blow for the administrations and their possible tax-profits on it.

Word Bank Q&A:

Q. How is “upstream” oil and gas defined?

Upstream is an industry term that refers to exploration of oil and natural gas fields, as well as drilling and operating wells to produce oil and natural gas” (World Bank, 2017).

Current projects in our portfolio would continue as planned. However, no new investments in upstream oil and gas would be undertaken after 2019, unless under exceptional circumstances as noted in the decision” (World Bank, 2017).

Kenya Pipeline:

The announcement by the bank, which has significant interests in Kenya’s oil prospecting sector, does not bode well for the country’s anticipated entry into the club of oil producing nations beginning next year. Analysts said they do not expect an immediate reaction to the announcement even as they acknowledged that it takes the shine from oil in the long term” (…) “Locally, the World Bank is offering technical support to the Kenyan government, through the Kenya Petroleum Technical Assistance Project, to prime all stakeholders for commercial oil production and sale. The six-year programme is scheduled to run until February 2021 and involves the World Bank managing a Sh5.2 billion fund set up by investors from Germany, Norway and Britain. The World Bank’s private lending arm, International Finance Corporation, is however directly involved in Kenya’s oil fields, having a 6.83 per cent stake in Africa Oil, the Canadian exploration firm with interests in northern Kenya oil blocks” (Mutegi, 2017)

Uganda Pipeline:

The pipeline, is expected to be completed by the year 2020, when the country is scheduled to start oil production. In fact, Uganda’s President, Yoweri Museveni and his Tanzanian counterpart recently commissioned the construction of the East African Crude Oil Pipeline. The two leaders laid mark stones for the crude oil pipeline in Mutukula, Kyotera district and Kabaale in Hoima district. Total E&P Uganda, a subsidiary of French oil giant, Total S.A, is spearheading the construction of the crude oil pipeline on behalf of the joint venture partners. Adewale Fayemi, the general manager, Total E&P Uganda says discussions are ongoing to discuss on the formalities of how the pipeline will be run. Already, an agreement has been reached that the East African Crude Oil Pipeline (EACOP) will be run and managed by a Special Purpose Vehicle (SPV) – private pipeline company. This means that a private company will be incorporated with joint venture partners – Tullow Uganda, Cnooc Uganda Ltd and Total E&P Uganda, and the governments of Uganda and Tanzania as shareholders in the company” (Ssekika, 2017)

Certainly, this will put a strain on the projects. They have to deliver another type of arrangement to make sure they get funding and have the funds to pay the added interests the banks wants. The added points on the dollar and the interest-rates will hit state-owned firms and the state itself. Since the pipelines most likely becomes more expensive and will be less profitable.

That the World Bank is pulling out of these projects is all within line of the Paris Accord, as they have professed is the reason. Still, this will make these projects more expensive and make sure they are earning less on it. Unless, the crude-oil prices are going up to a level that makes these investments even more profitable. That is only for time to tell. Since it is costly projects and also sophisticated to build. There is needed lots of expertise combined state planning to achieve the development plans.

This is just the beginning, but the pipelines and these investments are vital for both Kenya and Uganda. As the governments are already borrowing state funds on the possible earnings from the oil reserves in their basins. Therefore, they need to drill and need the petrodollar as quickly as possible. Peace.

Reference:

Mutegi, Mugambi – ‘World Bank dims Turkana oil hopes’ (14.12.2017) link: http://www.nation.co.ke/business/World-Bank-dims-Turkana-oil-hopes/996-4227848-u02v8n/index.html

Ssekika, Edward – ‘East African Crude Oil Pipeline: The Inside Story’ (11.12.2017) link: http://www.oilinuganda.org/features/economy/east-african-crude-oil-pipeline-the-inside-story-details-emerge-of-how-the-crude-oil-pipeline-will-be-financed-managed.html

World Bank – ‘Q&A: The World Bank Group and Upstream Oil and Gas’ (12.12.2017) link: http://www.worldbank.org/en/topic/climatechange/brief/qa-the-world-bank-group-and-upstream-oil-and-gas

Bears Ears National Monument: Energy Fuels Letter to U.S. Department of the Interior – ” Re: Review of Certain National Monuments, Federal Register Notice of May 11, 2017″ (25.05.2017)

Trumps signs proclamations shrinking two national monuments in Utah (Youtube-Clip)

The 10th Parliament today adds more debt to the state, near 2 trillion shillings more actually!

Today, the Ugandan Parliament has added more debt to the state since they cannot get grants or donors to fund their projects like in the past. National Resistance Movement (NRM) have the majority of the Parliament, therefore the adjustment and the possible questioning of the bills today. Would be squashed briefly, as the new amount of debt will arise and the state has to get more sufficient funds to repay the loans and the rising interests. That the three projects might bring profits in the future and could be seen as positive development, might be true, but it is a high risk. When the levels of debt already has grown as much as it is.

The first loan approved by the parliament was to borrow for the Lake Victoria Maritime Communication and Transport Project. That loan is up to $ 14,4 Million USD or 52,409 billion Uganda Shillings.

The second loan approved by the parliament was to borrow for the upgrade the road Kapchorwa-Suam-Kitale Road. These was two loans in one. Which is one $ 38,349,313.28 or 139,705 billion Uganda Shillings, this was borrowed from African Development Bank (ADB). The other was $ 56,129,597.12 or 204,437 billion Uganda Shillings from the African Development Fund (ADF).

The third loan was in Euros, first part from UK Export Finance (UKEF), which was EUROS 270,266,042.15, converted to US Dollars is $ 321,199,210.23 or in Uganda Shilling the total: 1,170,081,708,10 Uganda Shillings or in word One Trillion One Hundred Seventy billion Uganda Shilling. The second loan are in EUROS 37,110,585 from Standard Chartered Bank, converted to US Dollars is $ 44,112,060.75 or in Uganda Shillings 160,670,761,044.55 or in words One Hundred Sixty Billion, six hundred seventy million, seven hundred sixty-one thousand, forty-four and fifty-five hundredths Uganda Shillings.

So collectively today, the NRM has accepted loans which totals $ 474,190,180 US Dollars. In Uganda shilling it means 1,727,264,129,950.40 Uganda Shillings. In words it is one trillion, seven hundred twenty-seven billion, two hundred sixty-four million, one hundred twenty-nine thousand Uganda Shillings.

The budget of 2017-2018 was in total 29 Trillion Shillings. Therefore, they are now seeking to borrowing close to 2 Trillion Shillings, which is of last years budget close to 2,9 %. So the NRM MPs and State has had no trouble borrowing close to 3 percentage of previous budget on three infrastructure projects. It is evident and should be worrying with the knowledge that the state is already using 33 % of the budget to repay loans of old and their interests. No matter how positive these projects are and what they can accumulate in the future. Still, the basis of loaning this amounts while having growing debts already. Is really tasking future generations to pay for the loans of the previous ones.

So it seems like the NRM are planning to opening the gates and making sure the state owns more to even more banking and international money lenders. As if the petroleum dollars will safe the deficit in the future. As the interests and the downgrading of the state might appear. Unless, the state gets higher oil prices and some luck. Since, the NRM have really forked itself and hoping someone will bail it out. Peace.

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