Bureau Chief, East Africa
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Oct 27, 2015

Tanzania presidency hopeful to fix LNG land issues in weeks, if win confirmed

NAIROBI, Oct 27 (Reuters) – A government led by Tanzania’s
John Magufuli, if his election victory is confirmed, would
within “a few weeks” remove impediments related to the site of a
planned liquefied natural gas (LNG) plant and other issues, a
close aide said on Tuesday.

Pre-election polls forecast a win by Magufuli, whose CCM
party has been in power for half a century. CCM campaign
director January Makamba said the party’s count from its
representatives at polling stations suggested Magufuli would win
about 60 percent of the presidential vote.

Oct 16, 2015

Insight: Mauritius eyes Africa as pressure mounts on offshore business

EBENE, Mauritius (Reuters) – Mauritius beats Singapore as the world’s top route for foreign investment to India and is a hub for thousands of firms managing half a trillion dollars in assets.

But there are only a sprinkling of office blocks in Ebene Cybercity, the heart of the tiny Indian Ocean island’s financial services industry, and the area only livens up at the weekend when a band plays in a bar of the district’s only luxury hotel.

Oct 16, 2015

Mauritius eyes Africa as pressure mounts on offshore business

EBENE, Mauritius, Oct 16 (Reuters) – Mauritius beats
Singapore as the world’s top route for foreign investment to
India and is a hub for thousands of firms managing half a
trillion dollars in assets.

But there are only a sprinkling of office blocks in Ebene
Cybercity, the heart of the tiny Indian Ocean island’s financial
services industry, and the area only livens up at the weekend
when a band plays in a bar of the district’s only luxury hotel.

Oct 12, 2015

Mauritius plans derivatives platform in bid for African business – minister

EBENE, Mauritius, Oct 12 (Reuters) – Mauritius plans to
launch a trading platform to hedge African currencies against
the U.S. dollar, part of a bid to expand its role as a financial
hub for the continent, the financial services minister said.

The Indian Ocean island is also in talks to boost ties with
stock exchanges in Johannesburg and Nairobi to encourage
cross-listing of shares and other areas of cooperation,
Sudarshan Bhadain told Reuters in an interview.

Oct 9, 2015

Interview: Mauritius creating new bank from bailed out institutions – CEO

EBENE, Mauritius (Reuters) – A new Mauritius bank being created from two banks bailed out by the government will launch in January and could seek a strategic investor in three years, the executive leading the merger said.

MauBank will be formed by joining MPCB, a bank weighed down by bad loans amounting to 25 percent of its portfolio, and some parts of what was Bramer Bank, which was nationalised this year after suffering a run on deposits.

Oct 9, 2015

Mauritius minister sees 11 pct rise in visitors in 2015

PORT LOUIS, Oct 9 (Reuters) – The Indian Ocean island of
Mauritius expects to attract 11 percent more tourists in 2015
than last year and aims for steady growth in future of 6 percent
a year, the tourism minister said.

Charles Gaƫtan Xavier-Luc Duval, who is also deputy prime
minister, told Reuters that a major focus was boosting numbers
in the island’s winter season, running from June to September,
by drawing more visitors from India, China, Africa and Russia.

Oct 7, 2015

Mauritius seeks buyer for Britam stake, or sovereign fund may buy

PORT LOUIS, Oct 7 (Reuters) – Mauritius has asked a bank in
South Africa to help find a buyer for a near 25 percent stake in
Kenya’s British-American Investments Co (Britam) which
was seized from a disgraced tycoon, the finance minister said on
Thursday.

Finance Minister Seetanah Lutchmeenaraidoo told Reuters that
alternatively the stake could be bought by a Mauritian sovereign
fund due to be set up next month if the right price could not be
secured.

Oct 7, 2015

Mauritius eyes maritime projects, Africa links to boost growth

PORT LOUIS, Oct 7 (Reuters) – Mauritius has a deal with a
Chinese firm to develop a $113 million fishing port and is
working with investors on plans to become a maritime hub for
Africa, part of its bid to accelerate growth, the island
nation’s finance minister said on Thursday.

Mauritius has revised down growth forecasts for 2015 from
4.1 percent to 3.6 percent, a level Seetanah Lutchmeenaraidoo
told Reuters was not enough to meet a target of lifting the
Indian Ocean country from its middle income status.

Oct 7, 2015

Mauritius in talks to review India tax treaty: minister

PORT LOUIS (Reuters) – Mauritius is in talks to review a tax treaty that has made this island of just 1.3 million people the biggest single source of foreign direct investment in India, a nation of 1.3 billion people, the finance minister said on Wednesday.

The Double Taxation Avoidance treaty, signed in 1983, has been a cornerstone of Mauritius’ rise as a financial center and its diversification away from the Indian Ocean island’s traditional businesses, such as sugar cane growing and tourism.

Sep 29, 2015

Vote spurs calls for faster change in resource-rich Tanzania

DAR ES SALAAM (Reuters) – On the streets and in board rooms, Tanzanians are calling for change as they head to elections next month, demanding growth that reaches the poor, an end to red tape that holds back business and a crackdown on pervasive corruption.

Boasting huge gas reserves, a wealth of mineral deposits, vast tracts of arable land and sandwiched between two African trade blocs, Tanzania could be a regional powerhouse.

    • About Edmund

      "Edmund Blair is responsible for Reuters coverage from more than a dozen East African nations and Indian Ocean islands. He was bureau chief for Egypt and Sudan, and ran the bureau in Iran. He has worked across the Middle East and Africa, covering the Egyptian uprising, Iraq war, Palestinian-Israeli conflict and crises in East Africa. He also has experience in covering the oil and gas industry and financial affairs, including a period as an equities reporter in London."
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