Africa Economics Weekly

Africa Economics Weekly

South Africa’s fiscal tightrope, FX reshuffling in Nigeria

"Post-unrest relief measures announced by the South African authorities will probably go some way to offset the blow to the economy. The government expects to be able to stick to its fiscal consolidation plan, but the path to do so has narrowed again. Meanwhile in Nigeria, the central bank’s move this week to shake up foreign exchange provision in the country risks hurting economic activity and exacerbating inflationary pressures."

30 July 2021

Africa Economics Weekly

Vaccines and variants in SSA, post-unrest fallout in SA

A boost to vaccine supplies in Sub-Saharan Africa is likely to breathe some fresh air into struggling vaccine campaigns across the region at a time when third waves are sweeping across key economies. Meanwhile, although unrest in South Africa has fizzled out in the past week, there are early signs that it will leave a lasting economic effect

23 July 2021

Africa Economics Weekly

South Africa after the unrest

There are signs that the worst of the violence and unrest that has gripped South Africa this week may be over. Any hit to economic activity is unlikely to be long-lasting but the risk that the government’s austerity plans are watered down has increased.

16 July 2021
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Africa Economics Weekly

SA wage negotiations, Ethiopia debt restructuring

South Africa’s government is giving up further ground in wage negotiations with trade unions, raising the threat that the austerity plans unravel. Elsewhere, Ethiopia has revealed plans to restructure $1bn of external debt and with the “Common Framework” struggling to accelerate a broader restructuring, the risk of a disorderly default is rising.

Africa Economics Weekly

Nigeria’s oil reform, Angola’s debt, SA restrictions

Nigeria’s long-awaited Petroleum Industry Bill is on the verge of making into law, but it probably comes too late to propel a marked turnaround in the oil sector and will not resolve many other issues afflicting the economy. Elsewhere, the IMF’s view that Angola’s debt position is sustainable is based on some pretty optimistic assumptions regarding growth and fiscal consolidation. Finally, comments from one of South Africa’s MPC members echo our view that the tightening of virus restrictions won’t inflict severe damage on the economy and that interest rates will be raised later and more slowly than investors currently expect.

Africa Economics Weekly

Ghana’s cocoa boom, core inflation still low in S. Africa

Optimism is growing about a potential bumper cocoa harvest in Ghana, which could boost exports by more than 1% of GDP and presents an upside risk to our above-consensus growth forecasts. Meanwhile, although South African inflation hit a multi-year high in May, the weakness of core inflation suggests that it won’t join the EM tightening cycle soon.

Africa Economics Weekly

SA’s recovery, all change in Tanzania

The latest hard activity figures suggest that South Africa’s economy started Q2 on a weak footing and, while there were signs of improvement in May, tighter containment measures are likely to have dampened activity this month. One consequence is that we doubt that the Reserve Bank will raise interest rates in the near term. Elsewhere, reports this week that Tanzania is planning to join the Covax facility to secure vaccines add to signs of a broader improvement in policymaking under the new president, and bode well for the country’s growth prospects.

Africa Economics Weekly

Filling gaps: vaccine supply in SSA & electricity in SA

Leaders of G7 nations meeting this week are ramping up efforts to provide more vaccines to the developing world, which – along with the prospect of larger supplies from China – could give a lift to struggling inoculation campaigns and economic recoveries in Africa. Meanwhile, South Africa announced further steps to address its chronic electricity supply problem that has long weighed on the economy, but the measures will probably take some time to bear fruit.

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