Angola’s go-to app for delivering live goats to your door
In Africa, the gig economy can benefit rich and poor alike
African cities are tasty markets for food-delivery apps. The continent has 21 of the world’s 30 fastest-growing urban areas, where an expanding middle class boasts smartphones and spare cash. These cities also have hideous traffic, so it’s a chore to drive a car to a restaurant. But delivery scooters can slalom through jams.
These were the ingredients that made possible the rise of several food-delivery startups in Africa. Jumia Food delivers meals to urban dwellers in 11 countries. In South Africa Mr D Food competes with Uber Eats, an offshoot of the American ride-hailing app. Tupuca has been bringing meals to residents of Angola’s capital, Luanda, since 2016.
In “Congo Tales,” a new book about the second-largest tropical forest in the world, the story of a people and their home comes alive.
“Congo Tales,” a new book published recently by Prestel, began as a call to action to save the Odzala-Kokoua National Park in the heart of the Congo Basin, which is the second-largest tropical forest in the world after the Amazon, from the threats of climate change.
It soon became a book about the stories of the people who live there.
A team including Pieter Henket, a Dutch photographer; Eva Vonk, a Dutch producer; Steve Regis “Kovo” N’Sondé, a Congolese artist and philosopher; his brother Wilfried N’Sondé, a Congolese writer and musician; and a group of conservationists and researchers spent five years in the basin. There, they collected and translated the tales of the people of the Mbomo region. The stories were then edited by the N’Sondé brothers, a job suited to the pair who grew up with stories passed down from their grandmother.
“These stories, through the values and symbols they carry, are our legacy,” said Kovo N’Sondé. “When I say our, I don’t only mean Congolese citizens or Bantu peoples, I mean mankind. These stories are all about wisdom, knowledge, ethical and aesthetic principles.
Just 6% of arable land in Africa is irrigated, Morocco can offer valuable insights to help other countries tap into this enormous potential to expand irrigation.
By Dr. Karim El Aynaoui, managing director of OCP Policy Center and member of the Malabo Montpellier Panel
With the rolling dunes of the Sahara desert overlapping its borders, Morocco may be an unlikely candidate to lead the region in water control and management.
Yet it is precisely these natural features and the challenge of water scarcity that prompted the country to invest heavily in irrigation to boost food production and withstand droughts.
Today,Morocco mobilises an estimated 22 billion cubic meters of water, and has equipped around 20 per cent of all its cultivated land for irrigation.
As a new report launched at the Malabo Montpellier Panel Forum in Rabat reveals just six per cent of arable land in Africa is irrigated, Morocco can offer valuable insights to help other countries tap into this enormous potential to expand irrigation.
Nine of ten Africans unqualified for the Jobs they apply to
Research conducted by the ROAM (Ringier One Africa Media) Group shows that many Africans who apply for a job are not qualified in the first place.﻿
Clemens Weitz, CEO of ROAM elaborates on the potential for economic growth: “Our research clearly shows that the education of the African job market has a long way to go – both on the seeker and employer side. Solving this challenge will unlock tremendous latent economic potential. Imagine an efficient economy, where all employees sit in the job that is a perfect, natural fit for their individual nature. Productivity and satisfaction would skyrocket. AI and machine learning have tremendous potential, and we plan to fundamentally solve this challenge in 2019.”
Green technologies can generate growth and employment, here’s how African cities can utilize them
In 1967 one gigabyte of hard drive storage space cost US$ 1m. Today it’s around two US cents. Computer processing power has also increased exponentially: it doubles every two years. This is just the tip of the iceberg when it comes to technological progress in the 21st century.
There have also been tremendous advances in communication technology; robotics; nanotechnology; genetics and artificial intelligence, among other things. This merging of digital, physical and biological worlds has come to be known as the “fourth industrial revolution”.
So far, relatively little attention has been paid to the overwhelming potential of the fourth industrial revolution to catalyse much needed transitions to a more sustainable society – particularly in the developing world.
This is slowly starting to shift. The World Economic Forum recently published a set of briefs as part of its “Shaping the Future of Environment and Natural Resource Security System Initiative”. These documents have begun to address some key questions around the potential role of the fourth industrial revolution in supporting a sustainable development agenda.
There are many compelling reasons for combining the offerings of the fourth industrial revolution with new green technologies, infrastructures and systems to tackle the developing world’s challenges. Multiple benefits can be realised through introducing these offerings in new, innovative ways that are customised for local contexts.
These green technologies can generate employment, ease pressure on infrastructure in rapidly growing cities and lower energy costs, especially for poorer households.
West Africa’s new art destination is a sprawling megacity with a generation of artists, gallerists and collectors powering the scene.
LAGOS, Nigeria — Cars snaked out from the hideous traffic and deposited the city’s elite, dressed to impress, at the Civic Center, a concrete-and-steel edifice fronting Lagos Lagoon. Women exuding Vogue beauty and power paused on the patio to give television interviews.
Art X Lagos was living up to its reputation as a happening. Not just collectors, but the hip, the curious, the Instagram crowd, thronged West Africa’s principal fair in November. They packed the venue to hear the keynote talk by the distinguished British-Nigerian artist Yinka Shonibare, back for the occasion. The Ooni of Ife, a Yoruba king, showed up, escorted by praise-singers. Conversations carried over from gallery openings around town and from the Art Summit, a two-day convening, where the celebrated painter Kehinde Wiley, flown in by the United States consulate, was a special guest.
This enormous city — with no official census, population estimates range from 13 million to 21 million — is dynamic by disposition. Yes, the roads are clogged, political corruption is rampant, and the power cuts trigger armies of generators spewing noxious fumes. But Lagosians — who are proud of their “hustle,” a mix of effort, imagination, and brash optimism — will turn any challenge into enterprise. Commerce, music, fashion, have long thrived amid the chaos. And now, with its solid collector base and thickening web of galleries and alternative spaces, the art “ecosystem” — the word everyone uses — is achieving critical mass.
Op-Ed: How African countries can ‘leapfrog’ the fossil-fuel based growth strategies of developed countries
This week, heads of African states are convening at the African Union Summit in Addis Ababa, Ethiopia, where they will discuss the African Union’s strategy for socio-economic development, known as Agenda 2063. This agenda casts a vision of inclusive growth and sustainability, in the face of the growing risk of climate change. It is true: rising global temperatures pose a serious challenge to the lives and livelihoods of Africans. But climate change also offers an unprecedented opportunity to steer our continent towards a more sustainable, inclusive and prosperous future.
As wildlife authorities on the continent work with nonprofit organizations to secure ecologically valuable landscapes, populations of large mammals have grown.
The earth’s sixth mass extinction, scientists warn, is now well underway.
Worldwide, wildlife populations are plummeting at astonishing rates, and the trend is perhaps most starkly evident in Africa’s protected areas — the parks, game reserves and sanctuaries home to many of the world’s most charismatic species.
Between 1970 and 2005, national parks in Africa saw an average decline of 59 percent in the populations of dozens of large mammals, among them lions, zebras, elephants and giraffes. In at least a dozen parks, the losses exceeded 85 percent.
One of those was Gorongosa National Park, an area roughly the size of Rhode Island, in central Mozambique.
Once a premier safari destination, Gorongosa suffered through a brutal 16-year civil war. When the fighting finally ended in 1992, the park was a shambles: More than 95 percent of its large mammals had been wiped out — slaughtered for food and the purchase of arms. Abandoned for another decade, it might well have gone the way of so many other protected areas: downgraded and downsized, converted to cropland or opened to mining.
But now the numbers tell a different story, and it’s one with lessons for the world.
In Gorongosa, African wildlife is making a comeback. On a visit last fall, I saw vast herds of antelope, lion prides lazing in the shade, pods of hippos, a pangolin, a fish eagle weighed down with a fresh catch and families of elephants lumbering through a forest of fever trees. And much more.
In October, researchers in the park counted more than 100,000 large mammals, an increase of more than 700 percent over figures from a decade ago. And with that resurgence, Gorongosa has emerged as a rare success story — a case study in nature’s renewal and proof that with adequate funding and committed leadership, conservation is possible in even the poorest corners of the world.
This time, the winners could be Africans themselves
The first great surge of foreign interest in Africa, dubbed the “scramble”, was when 19th-century European colonists carved up the continent and seized Africans’ land. The second was during the cold war, when East and West vied for the allegiance of newly independent African states; the Soviet Union backed Marxist tyrants while America propped up despots who claimed to believe in capitalism. A third surge, now under way, is more benign. Outsiders have noticed that the continent is important and becoming more so, not least because of its growing share of the global population (by 2025 the un predicts that there will be more Africans than Chinese people). Governments and businesses from all around the world are rushing to strengthen diplomatic, strategic and commercial ties. This creates vast opportunities. If Africa handles the new scramble wisely, the main winners will be Africans themselves.
The extent of foreign engagement is unprecedented (see Briefing). Start with diplomacy. From 2010 to 2016 more than 320 embassies were opened in Africa, probably the biggest embassy-building boom anywhere, ever. Turkey alone opened 26. Last year India announced it would open 18. Military ties are deepening, too. America and France are lending muscle and technology to the struggle against jihadism in the Sahel. China is now the biggest arms seller to sub-Saharan Africa and has defence-technology ties with 45 countries. Russia has signed 19 military deals with African states since 2014. Oil-rich Arab states are building bases on the Horn of Africa and hiring African mercenaries.
Establishing Africa's Place in the Future: New Approaches to Driving Growth
This year's theme
The Africa Business Club is excited to present the 12th Annual Stanford Africa Business Forum, Establishing Africa's Place in the Future: New Approaches to Driving Growth. This year’s forum will invite all of us to think beyond the challenges that are affecting people living on the African continent. For so long we have been fully engrossed, and rightly so, in trying to solve localized challenges. While we must continue doing this, for us to truly reach our potential, we must think global. How can Africans contribute to solving the world’s toughest challenges? For example, what do we need to do in order to be at the center of the fourth industrial revolution? What must we do to help prevent a food shortage crisis as the world’s population continues to grow? What opportunities exist over the next decade for the continent to drive global growth? These pertinent questions will be addressed at the 2019 Stanford Africa Business Forum.
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