Bureau Chief, Southeastern U.S. and Caribbean
Pascal's Feed
Mar 25, 2014

Africa still rising, but needs economic discipline: AfDB

JOHANNESBURG (Reuters) – Sub-Saharan Africa’s economy will grow more than 6 percent this year, the African Development Bank said on Tuesday, but its president urged governments to build resilience to capital outflows and commodity price shocks.

In an interview with Reuters, Donald Kaberuka rejected as “premature” suggestions the ‘Africa Rising’ narrative might have lost momentum as a slowing China economy depresses prices for commodities such as copper, and the run-down of the U.S. Federal Reserve’s bond-buying programme squeezes the flow of cheap capital into emerging markets.

Mar 14, 2014

U.S. philanthropist Howard Buffett takes aim at rhino poaching

JOHANNESBURG (Reuters) – American philanthropist Howard G. Buffett donated $24 million to South Africa’s national parks service on Friday to fund a high-tech campaign against rhino poaching which he compared to the United States’ war on drugs on its southern border.

Buffett, son of billionaire investor and Berkshire Hathaway Inc chairman Warren Buffett, one of the world’s richest men, presented the 255 million rand cheque to South African authorities at Standard Bank offices in Johannesburg.

Mar 10, 2014

Insight – Equatorial Guinea seeks to shake off ‘oil curse’ image

MALABO (Reuters) – On land cleared of tropical forest, gleaming new office towers, apartment blocks, homes and highways dazzle the eye in Equatorial Guinea, Sub-Saharan Africa’s No. 3 energy producer where oil and gas revenues have fed a frenzy of construction.

But cutting away the jungle is proving easier for President Teodoro Obiang Nguema than shedding his central African nation’s dark image as a reclusive, repressive and graft-ridden poster child of the “resource curse”.

Mar 10, 2014

Equatorial Guinea seeks to shake off “oil curse” image

MALABO, March 10 (Reuters) – On land cleared of tropical
forest, gleaming new office towers, apartment blocks, homes and
highways dazzle the eye in Equatorial Guinea, Sub-Saharan
Africa’s No. 3 energy producer where oil and gas revenues have
fed a frenzy of construction.

But cutting away the jungle is proving easier for President
Teodoro Obiang Nguema than shedding his central African nation’s
dark image as a reclusive, repressive and graft-ridden poster
child of the “resource curse”.

Mar 7, 2014

South Africa, Rwanda expel diplomats in row over Rwandan exiles

JOHANNESBURG (Reuters) – South Africa expelled three Rwandan diplomats it linked to a raid on an exiled Rwandan general’s Johannesburg home, and Rwanda has retaliated by ordering out six South African envoys, officials said on Friday.

The row strained ties between two African states involved in efforts to bring peace to eastern Democratic Republic of Congo, where South Africa has troops in a U.N. brigade that fought last year against rebels whom U.N. experts said received support from Rwanda. Kigali denied backing the Congolese rebels.

Mar 7, 2014

South Africa, Rwanda expel diplomats over attack on dissident Rwandan general

JOHANNESBURG (Reuters) – South Africa expelled three Rwandan diplomats it linked to a raid by gunmen on a dissident exiled Rwandan general’s home and Rwanda ordered out six South African envoys in retaliation, a diplomatic source said on Friday.

Late on Monday, armed men broke into the Johannesburg home of former Rwandan army chief General Faustin Kayumba Nyamwasa, an exiled critic of Rwandan President Paul Kagame.

Feb 21, 2014

Sanusi suspension: oil-polluted politics cloud Africa anti-graft efforts

JOHANNESBURG, Feb 21 (Reuters) – Oil and politics make a
turbid mix, and the suspension of Nigeria’s central bank chief
and anti-graft whistleblower Lamido Sanusi is a cautionary tale
for newer African oil producers trying to avoid the “resource
curse”.

President Goodluck Jonathan suspended Sanusi on Thursday,
citing “acts of financial recklessness”, only weeks after the
internationally respected bank governor had publicly upbraided
state oil company Nigeria National Petroleum Corporation (NNPC)
with allegations that it had failed to remit $20 billion owed to
federal government coffers.

Feb 4, 2014

Help us develop economy, Equatorial Guinea leader asks investors

MALABO, Feb 4 (Reuters) – Equatorial Guinea wants
international investors and financial institutions to help open
up and diversify its energy-dependent economy, its president
said on Tuesday, while insisting the nation’s oil and gas wealth
was a “blessing and not a curse”.

President Teodoro Obiang Nguema told a small group of
foreign journalists in a rare interview that the small African
nation’s reputation in the West as a secretive autocracy was
undeserved, although he recognised his government’s failure to
provide hard economic and social statistics for analysis.

Feb 3, 2014

Equatorial Guinea puts up $1 bln for diversification drive

MALABO, Feb 3 (Reuters) – African oil and gas producer
Equatorial Guinea said on Monday it would allocate $1 billion
over three years to support foreign investment aimed at
diversifying its energy-dependent economy into new areas, such
as farming, petrochemicals and mining.

President Teodoro Obiang Nguema’s government announced the
co-investment fund of 500 billion CFA francs ($1 billion) as it
hosted a two-day conference in Malabo showcasing opportunities
for foreign investors in sectors beyond oil and gas.

Jan 11, 2014

Facing tough elections, South Africa’s Zuma vows to crush corruption

NELSPRUIT, South Africa, Jan 11 (Reuters) – South African
President Jacob Zuma announced a crackdown on corruption on
Saturday, presenting his ruling ANC’s manifesto for elections
this year that will give the party its toughest political test
since the end of apartheid.

Zuma, who has ruled Africa’s biggest economy since 2009 and
himself faces allegations of graft and abuse of power, announced
the measures at a packed African National Congress (ANC) rally
in the eastern province of Mpumalanga.

    • About Pascal

      "I am based in Miami, heading the editorial reporting team covering the southeastern United States and the Caribbean. This includes Cuba and Haiti and we are also in charge of covering the annual Atlantic hurricane season and Space missions from Cape Canaveral. Previously, I was Chief Correspondent for West and Central Africa, and chief correspondent, Venezuela, following earlier postings in Cuba, Brazil, southern Africa, Portugal and Spain."
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