Bureau Chief, East Africa
Edmund's Feed
Feb 4, 2015

Ethiopia launches mobile money schemes to extend banking reach

ADDIS ABABA, Feb 4 (Reuters) – Ethiopian banks and
microfinance firms are launching mobile money services, helping
reach swathes of the population that now have little access to
branches or services, the mobile technology providers and banks
said.

The launch of the services, which allow customers to make
payments or receive money via a mobile that is linked to a bank
account, mirrors technology used in other African nations that
has drawn millions of people into the financial system.

Jan 29, 2015

March meeting to plan rebuilding of Ebola-hit states

NAIROBI (Reuters) – Governments and international organisations plan to meet in March to work out how to rebuild three West African nations whose economies have been shattered by Ebola, a U.N. envoy said on Thursday.

The number of newly detected cases of Ebola virus infection has been dropping sharply in Sierra Leone, Guinea and Liberia in recent weeks. But the three countries are still reeling from the impact of the outbreak.

Jan 22, 2015

South Africa’s Standard Bank to open rep office in Ethiopia

NAIROBI, Jan 22 (Reuters) – South Africa’s Standard Bank
aims to open a representative office in Ethiopia by
the end of March, joining others eyeing a fast growing African
economy although foreigners are barred from offering commercial
banking services there.

The office will provide a foothold for the South African
bank to build relationships with local businesses and develop
market intelligence to help advise clients interested in
investing in Africa’s second most populous country.

Jan 13, 2015

Egypt minister says pardon still possible for Al Jazeera journalists

NAIROBI, Jan 13 (Reuters) – Egypt’s President Abdel Fattah
al-Sisi could still pardon three jailed Al Jazeera journalists
who are now facing a retrial if he deems it appropriate, the
country’s foreign minister said on Tuesday.

Canadian-Egyptian Mohamed Fahmy, Egyptian Baher Mohamed and
Australian Peter Greste were sentenced last June to seven to 10
years for spreading lies to help a “terrorist organisation” – a
reference to Egypt’s outlawed Muslim Brotherhood.

Dec 8, 2014

Insight – Kenya needs to win war of ideas to stop Islamist advance

MOMBASA/NAIROBI (Reuters) – Kenya must win a battle against militant ideology that is seeping in from its northern neighbour and spreading to Muslim youths at home if it is to stop Somali Islamists extending their reach in east Africa.

After two attacks in 10 days by Somalia’s al Shabaab group that killed more than 60 people, President Uhuru Kenyatta vowed to step up his “war on terror” to halt raids across the porous border and stop any dream of making an Islamic Caliphate.

Dec 8, 2014

Kenya needs to win war of ideas to stop Islamist advance

MOMBASA/NAIROBI (Reuters) – Kenya must win a battle against militant ideology that is seeping in from its northern neighbor and spreading to Muslim youths at home if it is to stop Somali Islamists extending their reach in east Africa.

After two attacks in 10 days by Somalia’s al Shabaab group that killed more than 60 people, President Uhuru Kenyatta vowed to step up his “war on terror” to halt raids across the porous border and stop any dream of making an Islamic Caliphate.

Dec 4, 2014

Back to basics: making a car for Africa

NAIROBI, Dec 4 (Reuters) – On the edge of Kenya’s capital,
two doors down from a gleaming display of Germany’s luxury
Porsche cars, another showroom offers Africa’s answer to the
continent’s potholed roads.

It’s called the Mobius. It has no flashy dials, alloy wheels
or electric windows. In fact it has no windows at all except for
the front windshield.

Dec 2, 2014

Kenyan president changes security officials after al Shabaab kill 36

NAIROBI (Reuters) – Somali al Shabaab Islamist militants killed 36 non-Muslim workers at a quarry in northeast Kenya on Tuesday, prompting the president to change his top security officials to tackle a relentless wave of violence.

Kenyans have grown increasingly critical of President Uhuru Kenyatta and his government for failing to do more to defend the nation from the incessant militant attacks, which have killed well over 200 people since 2013.

Nov 5, 2014

East African oil safe from price drop – policies are the problem

NAIROBI (Reuters) – Tougher government terms that will squeeze corporate rewards, not the sharp crude price drop, are the more potent threat to east Africa’s oil boom.

The 25 percent fall in oil prices to below $85 a barrel from July has rattled high-cost producers, but industry insiders say Kenya and Uganda have enough oil to secure investment.

Nov 5, 2014

Africa Oil wants deal to reduce stake in Kenya fields by early 2016: CEO

NAIROBI (Reuters) – Africa Oil, which has a 50 percent stake in Kenyan fields where commercial reserves of crude have been found, wants to offer part of its holding by early 2016 to a new partner that can help it fund development, the chief executive said.

Africa Oil and its existing partner Tullow Oil, which holds the other 50 percent, have found more than 600 million barrels of recoverable reserves. A final decision to develop the fields is expected in the first quarter of 2016.

    • 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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