Africa In Focus

Africa In Focus: "The mainstream thinking now is that Africa is different and we could get it right if we want. The choice is fully ours, and it is now time for us to define what we want."

African Development Bank (AFDB) President, Dr. Donald Kaberuka.

Wednesday, 24 April 2013

Safaricom Invests $1.1 Million In General Electric's Durathon Batteries, Expects ROI In 3 Years

Safaricom has signed a Sh96 million ($1.1million) deal with global energy and technology firm, General Electric (GE) to provide its cell towers with 48 General Electric Durathon Batteries that will help capacitate its network to run efficiently in case of power outages.
The back-up batteries will be connected to Safaricom’s base stations that are not connected to a standby diesel generator. The company procured batteries that will serve 25 of its base stations in Nairobi.
Sustainable power supply is one of the major worry for business owners in Africa.
With about 1,700 base stations in Kenya, Safaricom use an average of 35 litres of fuel daily to power a single base station and maintain its network up-time in cases of prolong power outages.
It has in recent times; turn to solar energy to power some of its cell towers located in regions that receive abundant sunlight.
"Our primary energy source at Safaricom has been electricity from the national grid. Unfortunately the supply has been and has continued to be unpredictable," Safaricom's Chief Technology Officer Thibaud Rerolle said.
Safaricom CEO Bob Collymore said its cell sites connected to the national grid experience up to four hours of electricity blackouts daily, leading to network glitches, loss of business and high operations costs.
“The introduction of using this technology will ensure that our customers receive uninterrupted usage of our mobile services,” Collymore said on Tuesday.
He added that “Energy costs make up the biggest component in running a cell tower.”
Safaricom hopes to cut down its diesel costs used to power generators by half and achieve a return on investment before three years.
The Durathon batteries require only two to three hours recharging as opposed to conventional batteries that last a maximum of three hours.
Compared to diesel generators, 48 GE Durathon batteries have less carbon footprint as an alternative source of energy and can also be remotely monitored from a control centre.
According to GE President Africa, Jay Ireland, Durathon series batteries are generally designed to provide standby power to critical applications in the Telecom industry.
 "The GE Durathon batteries have an 8 - 10 hours life, they are dense than normal batteries, temperature insensitive and they are build out of 95 percent recycled materials."
He explained that "It is one of the first batteries in the world to be designed for telecom applications and by using the batteries as the primary energy source in a continuous charge-discharge cycling (CDS) operating mode, fuel costs and emissions can be substantially reduced and overall system efficiency dramatic improved."
"This battery is the first of its kind in Africa and Safaricom is the first mobile network operator globally to adopt this technology. We believe in a great future for Africa - this region and this country," he said.
The GE boss however express his company interest partnering with stakeholders to broaden the innovation play in Kenya and the rest of Africa.

UN: Africa Can Become “Global Economic Power”

Changes in world order since the turn of the century — including greater political stability in Africa and a bumper crop of commodities — if handled right, provide an opportunity for Africa to become “a global economic power,” said a UN report released on Tuesday.
“The global economic and geopolitical changes of the last two decades have shifted the global traditional power structures and witnessed the emergence of new powers from the South,” said a foreword to “Making the most of Africa’s Commodities: Industrializing for Growth, Jobs and Economic Transformation,” an economic report on Africa.
“This shift, driven largely by a revolution in information and communications technology, has led to substantial increases in cross-border capital flows and trade in intermediate goods, thus reflecting the rising importance of value chains,” said the foreword.
It was written by Carlos Lopes, UN under-secretary-general and executive secretary of the UN Economic Commission for Africa (UNECA), and African Union (AU) Commission Chairperson Nkosazana Clarice Dlamini Zuma.
“Changes in demography, rapid urbanization and a prolonged commodity-price boom have also made huge global changes, all of which present unprecedented opportunities for Africa to overcome its legacies and embark on a bold agenda that will see the continent emerge as a global economic power,” they said.
“African countries have a real opportunity to capitalize on their resource endowments and high international commodity prices, as well as on opportunities from changes in the global economy to promote economic transformation through commodity-based industrialization and to address poverty, inequality and unemployment,” the 256-page report said.
“If grasped, these opportunities will help Africa promote competitiveness, reduce its dependence on primary commodity exports and associated vulnerability to shocks and emerge as a new global growth pole,” it said.
The question is not whether Africa can industrialize by ignoring its commodities, but rather how it can use them to add value, new services and technological capabilities, said the report in its Executive Summary.
It said such a contention may not apply to all African countries and should not be the only way African resource-rich countries industrialize.
Making the most of Africa’s commodities requires appropriate development planning frameworks and effective industrial policies that are evidence-based, said the summary.
It urges caution against reliance solely on industrialization, saying it has not transformed economies.
“The seeds of its woes were sown during the colonial period but the problem worsened after independence with the failure of often externally generated industrial policies,” the summary said.
“The colonial legacy is the result of the extractive nature of African colonialism, which left behind structures, institutions, and infrastructure designed to benefit non-Africans.”
As an example, it pointed to roads and railways built in colonial times and primarily designed to transport minerals and other raw materials to the continent’s ports and shipped to Europe.
“They were not designed to join one part of the continent to another and created a legacy that is still felt in the 21st century, with production and export of commodities geared towards the needs of the former colonial powers — not value addition,” the summary said.
But, it said Africa’s “significant human and natural resources” can be used “to promote industrialization and structural economic transformation through value-addition strategies in all sectors.”
According to the report, Africa has about 12 percent of the world’s oil reserves, 42 percent of its gold, 80-90 percent of chromium and platinum group metals, and 60 percent of arable land in addition to vast timber resources.
“With such abundance and rising global demand for raw materials, African governments are forging new partnerships, boosting infrastructure investment and sharing skills and technology,” the summary said. “But Africa can do better.”
“Instead of relying on exports of raw materials, the continent should add value to its commodities to promote sustained growth, jobs and economic transformation,” it said.
It noted that “commodity based industrialization in Africa should not — and cannot — be the only way for African countries to industrialize.” “In the long-term, even resource-rich countries have to venture into innovative non-resource-based activities to sustain their industries when resources are exhausted,” it added.
In the conclusion, the report said “Africa’s industrialization is likely to take place in a changing globalized economy full of uncertainties.”
“African governments should therefore work together to develop a united vision on how to influence the global economic agenda and, in so doing, shape the outcomes of globalization itself. The time has come for Africa to stop being a bystander to its own destiny.”

Source: Xinhua 

Book: Google’s Chairman, Jared Cohen, Gives 6 Predictions on The World Digital Future

Google Executive Chairman Eric Schmidt has a new book that portends how tech trends will shape our planet.

Google chairman, Eric Schmidt has co-authored a book with Jared Cohen, a former U.S state department terrorosm adviser who now head Google Idea's; giving predictions on how the digital age future will look like.

The book, "The New Digital Age:Reshaping the Future of People, Nations and Business," reflect on what our world will be like when everyone on Earth is connected digitally.

A universal Web, the authors say, will be an inevitable outcome of a world that's increasingly being driven by technology. But instead of an ominous sci-fi vision of a planet run by robot overlords, they envision a world that will be shaped, for better or worse, by us.

"This is a book about technology, but even more, it's a book about humans and how humans interact with, implement, adapt to and exploit technologies in their environment, now and in the future ...," they write. "For all the possibilities that communication technologies represent, their use for good or ill depends solely on people. Forget all the talk about machines taking over. What happens in the future is up to us."

Here are six predictions Schmidt and Cohen make about the future of the Web:

·         Online privacy classes will be taught alongside sex education in schools.
"Parents will ... need to be even more involved if they are going to make sure their children do not make mistakes online that could hurt their physical future. As children live significantly faster lives online than their physical maturity allows, most parents will realize that the most valuable way to help their child is to have the privacy-and-security talk even before the sex talk."
Conversely, they say, "Some parents will deliberately choose unique names or unusually spelled traditional names so that their children have an edge in search results, making them easy to locate and promotable online without much direct competition."

·         The rise of the mobile Web means the entire world will be online by 2020.

"What might seem like a small jump forward for some -- like a smartphone priced under $20 -- may be as profound for one group as commuting to work in a driverless car is for another," they write. "Mobile phones are transforming how people in the developing world access and use information, and adoption rates are soaring. There are already more than 650 million mobile-phone users in Africa, and close to 3 billion across Asia."
One example they cite of how mobile is already changing lives: Congolese fisherwomen who used to take fish to the market, only to sometimes watch their catch spoil, now leave their fish in the water and wait for calls from customers.

·         News organizations will find themselves out of the breaking-news business, as it becomes impossible to keep up with the real-time nature of information sources like Twitter.

"Every future generation will be able to produce and consume more information than the previous one and people will have little patience or use for media that cannot keep up," the authors say.
"News organizations will remain an important and integral part of society in a number of ways, but many outlets will not survive in their current form -- and those that do survive will have adjusted their goals, methods and organizational structure to meet the changing demands of the new global public."

·         Online "cloud" data storage will continue to emerge as the norm, and that's going to radically change how we view privacy.
"The possibility that one's personal content will be published and become known one day -- either by mistake or through criminal interference -- will always exist. People will be held responsible for their virtual associations, past and present, which raises the risk for nearly everyone since people's online networks tend to be larger and more diffuse than their physical ones," they write.
"Since information wants to be free, don't write anything down you don't want read back to you in court or printed on the front page of a newspaper, as the saying goes. In the future, this adage will broaden to include not just what you say and write, but the websites you visit, who you include in your online network, what you 'like,' and what others who are connected to you say and share."

·         As the Web expands, revolutions will begin springing up in nations with oppressive governments "more casually and more often than at any other time in history."
"With new access to virtual space and to its technologies, populations and groups all around the world will seize their moment, addressing long-held grievances or new concerns with tenacity and conviction. Many leading these charges will be young, not just because so many of the countries coming online have incredibly young populations ... but also because the mix of activism and arrogance in young people is universal."

·         More people will use technology for terror. But a Web presence will make those terrorists easier to find, too.

"Many of the populations coming online in the next decade are very young and live in restive areas, with limited economic opportunities and long histories of internal and external strife. ... Terrorism, of course, will never disappear, and it will continue to have a destructive impact," the authors write.
"But as the terrorists of the future are forced to live in both the physical and the virtual world, their model of secrecy and discretion will suffer. There will be more digital eyes watching, more recorded interactions, and, as careful as even the most sophisticated terrorists are, even they cannot completely hide online."

Source: CNN

Private Jet Owners In Nigeria May Pay Luxury Tax

Nigerian government will soon impose a form of luxury tax on owners and operators of private jets in the country, top officials of the Ministry of Aviation has told Punch, a local Nigerian newspaper.

The plan to impose the luxury tax will be preceded by the new general aviation policy, which is currently being drafted by the government, officials said.
The move is part of the on-going review of the 2006 Civil Aviation Act, which wil be perfected soonest.

A source privy to the plan explained that the luxury tax on all private jet owners. “is patterned after what is in operation in Brazil and most European countries.”

The source said, “You know the government is exempting private jet owners from possessing AOC in the proposed general aviation policy that will be unveiled very soon. As soon as this is implemented, the government will start asking all private jets to pay the luxury tax.”

“The idea is that since chartered aircraft operators and regular commercial airlines are already paying ticket sales tax and passenger service tax to the government, private jet owners should also pay a form of tax, which most countries of the world called luxury tax. The plan to exempt private jet owners from possessing an AOC before they can fly is just part of the whole policy proposal.

“All these foreign private jets coming into the country must either come under an AOC and be mandated to pay ticket sales charge and passenger service charge, or you stay under private category and pay luxury tax. Once you are flying within the country for some time, you must fall in one of the categories.”

Private jet owners in Nigeria include President of Dangote Group, Alhaji Aliko Dangote; Chairman, Globacom, Dr. Mike Adenuga; Chairman, Zenon Oil, Mr. Femi Otedola; General Overseer, Redeemed Christian Church of God, Pastor Enoch Adeboye; and General Overseer, Living Faith World Outreach, Bishop David Oyedepo.

British Petroleum (BP) To Invest 5 Billion In South Africa, Mozambique in Next 5 Years

"With the improving investment climate, especially policy stability... being presented in Southern Africa, BP has decided to invest significantly for the benefit of all of our stakeholders," British Petroleum (BP) refining and marketing chief executive Iain Conn told reporters in Johannesburg.

"It gives me great pleasure to announce that BP will be investing in excess of R5bn in Mozambique and South Africa over the next five years, commencing in 2013, which will be new plant and infrastructure upgrades."

It would be funded from BP cash reserves. Conn said R800 million would be invested in Mozambique, and R4.7bn in South Africa.

"This investment is designed to improve safety, customer experience, operational efficiency, help with government to improve energy security, and enable the transition towards cleaner fuels."

Conn said R2.5bn would be invested in upgrading refinery infrastructure at the SAPREF refinery, its joint venture with Shell in KwaZulu-Natal.

Over R1bn would be invested in terminals in South Africa and Mozambique.

The balance of the investment would be in the "retail network".

He said the investment was approaching five percent of all the capital that went into the marketing, refining, and chemical business of BP, which was currently represented in 70 countries.

"We are encouraged by the progress being made in South Africa and Mozambique to establish an environment of policy certainty and continuity for all economic activities," Conn said.

"In South Africa, I am conveying our appreciation to the government for adopting the National Development Plan as the blueprint for tackling the many challenges that continue to face this great nation."

Energy department director general Nelisiwe Magubane said government "endorsed and welcomed" the investment.

Source: SAPA

Monday, 22 April 2013

RwandaAir To Become 12th Operator Of Q400 Aircraft In Africa


Bombardier Aerospace and RwandAir of Kigali, Rwanda announced today that RwandAir has signed a firm purchase agreement for one Q400 NextGen turboprop airliner.

Based on the list price of the Q400 NextGen aircraft, the order is valued at approximately $33 million US.

The Q400 NextGen turboprop airliner, which is built at Bombardier's Toronto, Ontario facility, is the most recent development in the evolution of the Q400 aircraft, and the advanced successor to Bombardier's Dash 8/Q-Series family of . Optimized for short-haul operations, the "comfortably greener," 70- to 80-seat Q400 NextGen aircraft is a large, fast, quiet and fuel-efficient turboprop. It provides an ideal balancaircrafte of passenger comfort and operating economics with a reduced environmental footprint.

"As demand for domestic and regional travel in Africa accelerates, our 67-seat, dual-class Q400 NextGen aircraft will ensure RwandAir is well positioned to offer increased capacity on popular routes that are being opened and serviced with our 37-seat Bombardier Dash 8-200 aircraft," said John Mirenge, Chief Executive Officer, RwandAir.

"The Q400 NextGen turboprop is the right aircraft to develop our domestic and regional market and to firmly support RwandAir on our path towards growth and increased profitability. We are also complementing our new dual-classBombardier CRJ900 NextGen regional jets by offering similar cabin amenities on the Q400 NextGen aircraft, providing for a seamless passenger service between the two aircraft models and aligning our total fleet strategy towards a unified passenger experience. We are developing the RwandAir brand and we are gaining momentum in the region through selection of the right aircraft and right services for our growing market."

"As one of our newest and fast-growing customers, RwandAir is serving Africa's expanding domestic and international markets and we are delighted that the carrier has yet again chosen Bombardier aircraft to further develop its network of short- and medium-haul destinations," said Mike Arcamone, President, Bombardier Commercial Aircraft.

“The Q400 NextGen turboprop has proven its capability and flexibility in many regions of the world and is operating in diverse environments. We anticipate that it will serve RwandAir and its customers very well."

RwandAir will become the 12th operator of Q400 and Q400 NextGen aircraft in Africa, and its Q400 NextGen aircraft will join more than 40 Q400and Q400 NextGen aircraft that are already in service with, or have been ordered by, 11 operators in nine countries in Africa.

With the transaction announced today, Bombardier has taken firm orders for 468 Q400 and Q400 NextGen aircraft.

Worldwide, Q400 and Q400 NextGen aircraft have transported more than 243 million passengers and have logged over 3.8 million flight hours and more than 4.1 million take-offs and landings in service with more than 40 operators in over 30 countries on five continents.

Nnamdi Azikiwe International Airport To Start Digital Tolling By May

To ensure security efficiencyand accountability at in the nation’s airport/terminals; Nigeria air travellers will start using digital toll gates at the Nnamdi Azikiwe International Airport, Abuja by the end of May.

The digital gates will be managed by the Federal Airports Authority of Nigeria (FAAN), in partnership with First Bank Nigeria Plc and another private firm.

According to Henrietta Yakubu, FAAN, Abuja airport spokesperson: “The automated service became imperative to plan against insecurity as well as ensure transparency in the collection of fare at the airport entrance,” adding that  “people will no longer stand there collecting N200.”

“There will be a bar at the entrance. If they don’t put the correct amount of money or a chip, as the case may be, the bar will not lift. I can confirm to you that it is something that will take place very soon.

“We are planning to go on air to educate members of the public on this because there is nowhere in the world where people park to pay money at airports. It will not only speed up the process, but will boost security at the airport.”

Yakubu lamented that FAAN had been losing huge sums of money to motorists, amidst other illegalities.

“There are a lot of drivers who do not want to pay. There are a lot of recycling of tickets and so many other things going on, she said.

Acer Africa Open e-Learning Classroom In Zimbabwe

Photo: Acer works together with partners CreAtive Credit and Axiz to open first of its kind Classroom at the Mary Mount School in Zimbabwe:

Acer Africa, together with business partners CreAtive Credit and Axiz Workgroup have collaborated to contribute in the construction of a first-of-its-kind technology driven education facility, based at the Mary Mount School, in the Rashinga district, Zimbabwe.
The Mary Mount School has been providing scholars with quality education for a number of years and with the addition of this technology will provide up to 600 learners with world class computer-based education.
The aim of this project is to equip each pupil with essential skills as well contribute to their daily classroom experience and see them one day achieve the dreams they aspire to.
The Mary Mount School will be fully equipped with top of the line Acer notebooks, desktops and monitors as well as an Acer Education interactive whiteboard.
The solution further includes a fully interactive projector, offering training imperative to all scholars at the school thus bringing Mary Mount in line with many other schools in terms of the technology offering at their disposal.
Sylvester Nguni, Zimbabwean Minister of State (Representing Vice President Joice Mujuru) along with Lazarus Dokoro, Zimbabwean Deputy Minister of Education Sport and Culture officiated at the opening of the classroom together with other dignitaries including Acer Vice President Amin Mortazavi and CreAtive Credit Managing Director John Burnett after a five hour drive through the remotest of terrain Africa has to offer.
“Much like the recently established Orlando Pirates Learning Centre in South Africa, the Mary Mount version will empower disadvantaged children through integrated technologies,” says Amin Mortazavi, Vice President of Acer Middle East and Africa “In the future Acer will aim to establish these facilities all over Africa in order to provide pupils with a supplementary understanding of their school curriculum.”
The classroom was handed over to the Rashinga community to realise a partnership that was formed between CreAtive Credit and the Zimbabwe department of education to address the need for educational infrastructure in the area. Marius Le Grange, Acer Africa Education Manager added “The most important investment a nation can make is in its young learners; offering them education will develop them in to leaders of the 21st century. Acer is proud to play an active role in such development projects where students will have access to the latest technology and educational software available in the market.”
According to Guido Terni, Acer EMEA Education Manager, technology has assumed a substantial stake in the social and educational lives of today’s youth. “For them, learning must be flexible, dynamic, easy, comfortable and practical. Acer plays an active role in developing and cultivating the school of the future, providing innovative and easy-to-use solutions to the global education community.”

Africa's Largest Solar PV Plant Launched In Mauritania

 Africa's largest solar PV plant

Masdar, Abu Dhabi's renewable energy company, has launched an US$31.99 million utility-scale, 15-megawatt solar photovoltaic (PV) power plant in the Islamic Republic of Mauritania. The Sheikh Zayed Solar Power Plant is located in the capital city of Nouakchott and is the largest solar PV plant in Africa. The new facility accounts for 10 percent of Mauritania's energy capacity and will displace approximately 21,225 tons of carbon dioxide annually.
Mauritania's electricity grid, which is powered mostly by expensive diesel generators, currently has an installed capacity of only 144 megawatts, resulting in severe energy shortages. With energy demand increasing by 12 percent annually, the addition of solar power will help meet future electricity shortfalls and supply the energy demand of approximately 10,000 homes. The plant, which consists of 29,826 micromorph thin-film panels, was built using innovative and sustainable construction practices. In particular, project engineers designed the support structure for the PV modules to be piled into the ground instead of using a concrete foundation, which reduced the project's carbon footprint and cost.
"Energy access is a pathway to economic and social opportunity," said Mauritania President Mohamed Ould Abdel Aziz during the inauguration of the solar plant. "Electrification, through sustainable sources of energy, is critical in ensuring our people have access to basic services and is a step toward improving our infrastructure and long-term economic development. We are pleased to have partnered with Masdar to successfully deliver Africa's largest solar PV plant and an important facility to meet Mauritania's growing energy needs.
"This new solar power plant not only provides much needed grid capacity for our people, it also proves that renewable energy can play a major role in the development of our country. The United Arab Emirates, a nation dedicated to improving global welfare, have committed resources and expertise to improving energy access through renewable energy technologies. This is a testament to the UAE leadership's vision of ensuring sustainable development -- economically, socially and environmentally," added President Abdel Aziz.
The United Arab Emirates has a long history of reinvesting its hydrocarbon wealth into helping developing countries promote economic development and alleviate poverty. From the construction of water and road infrastructure to building hospitals and schools, the UAE is enabling economic growth across developing nations.
The acceleration and adoption of renewable energy is part of the UAE's commitment to the developing world. With the price of renewable energy technologies falling, solar and wind power are becoming economically viable solutions to improving energy security and access. Domestically generated renewable energy is clean, sustainable and helps developing nations insulate themselves from volatile fuel prices.
"For more than 40 years, the UAE has remained steadfast in its commitment to helping developing countries achieve their economic potential," said Dr. Sultan Ahmed Al Jaber, CEO of Masdar. "Today, as the UAE and Masdar help countries realize their ambitions of developing critical energy infrastructure, we are finding important new ways to assist the global community in achieving sustainable development.
"Through this project, and others like it, Masdar is committed to improving energy access and demonstrating that renewable energy can serve as a foundation for economic development and social opportunity," added Dr. Al Jaber.
With strong solar and wind energy resources, Mauritania has the potential to derive a significant portion of its electricity capacity from sustainable and reliable sources of energy.
"Renewable energy has the potential to be a major contributor to the energy mix in developing countries where access to conventional energy is limited," said Dr. Al Jaber. "With energy demand expected to nearly double by 2030, renewable energy will play an increasingly important role, especially in countries where demand is rapidly outstripping supply."

Friday, 19 April 2013

World Bank Proffer Three Ways To Achieve Growth And Poverty Reduction

President of the World Bank Jim Yong Kim speaks to the media after arriving at the bank for his first day on July 2, 2012 in Washington, DC. Mr. Kim succeeds Robert Zoellick and is the 12th president of the World Bank.
The World Bank President, Jim Yong Kim, in the statement released at the formal opening of the IMF/World Bank spring meeting, has revealed three initiatives under its current plan to end extreme poverty within a generation, especially in developing countries.
According to Kim, “if we are to end extreme poverty within a generation, we’ll need at least three things to happen. First, the high growth rate in the developing world over the past 15 years must accelerate.  Second, growth has to translate into poverty reduction and job creation and it must be inclusive and curb inequality. And third, we must avert or mitigate potential shocks, such as climate disasters or new food, fuel, or financial crises.
“In particular, doing better on growth means doing even more of the kinds of reforms that have underpinned the strong developing-country growth of the past 15 years. That means eliminating bottlenecks; additional investment in infrastructure; and, to ensure that the poor participate in the benefits of growth, much greater investments in education and health care,” he said.
While admitting that the task of ending extreme poverty within a generation is difficult, Kim said it would require “ingenuity, focus, commitment, and visionary leaders. But if we succeed, we will have accomplished one of humankind’s most historic accomplishments.”
Kim said the anti-poverty must be far more effective in fragile and conflict affected nations, hence the bank’s determination “to shift more funding toward fragile states under our concessionary lending fund, the International Development Association, or IDA. If we hope to meet our goals of ending poverty and boosting shared prosperity, we must be successful in fragile states.”
Kim noted that the bank spent $9 billion on agriculture last year, as part of large “investments in areas like sustainable energy, agriculture — looking, for example, at how to build clean cities. Those are things that we do all the time and we’re doing everything that we can to be more climate smart in every one of those activities.”
"As we move ahead, we also must address climate change with a plan that matches the scope of the problem. Climate change is not just an environmental challenge. It is a fundamental threat to economic development. Unless the world takes bold action now, a disastrously warming planet threatens to put prosperity out of reach of millions and roll back decades of development.
Recently, the World Bank outlined an ambitious agenda for the global community that called for a two-pronged approach for a world free of poverty.
The first is virtually ending extreme poverty by 2030. The second is promoting shared prosperity by fostering income growth of the bottom 40 percent of the population in every country. And for that second goal, we also mean sharing prosperity across generations, and that calls for bold action on climate change.
According to the World Bank "ending extreme poverty within a generation will be much harder than most people realise. It is far from a given. It will take ingenuity, focus, commitment, and visionary leaders. But if we succeed, we will have accomplished one of humankind’s most historic accomplishments.
"Let’s take a look at the situation in the world today.  More than four years after the start of the financial crisis, high-income countries continue to struggle with high unemployment, weak growth and economic fragility.
"The good news is that taken as a whole developing countries are doing relatively well, with growth expected to reach about 5.5 percent this year. That should strengthen to just under 6 percent by 2015. Indeed, developing countries are accounting for more than half of global growth.”

Shimadzu Corporation Gets South Africa Market Share Leadership Award

Based on its recent analysis of the general X-ray devices market, Frost & Sullivan recognises Shimadzu Corporation with the 2013 South Africa Market Share Leadership Award.  
Shimadzu Corporation, together with its South African representative, Africa X-Ray Industrial & Medical (Pty) Ltd (AXIM), has positioned itself as the market leader principally in the public healthcare sector and is poised to make rapid strides within the private sector as well.

"The company is lauded for offering a product portfolio at an exceptional price-performance ratio," noted Frost & Sullivan Research Analyst Shalena Naidoo .  "It has been able to overcome the financial restraints within the highly price-sensitive public sector through its high quality, reliable offerings that cover the spectrum from high-end to mid-range, and provide outstanding value for the cost."

Shimadzu Corporation/AXIM imparts hardware and software skills training to radiographers and radiologists through regular training workshops and conferences.  Such initiatives have been critical to improving the skill sets of professionals handling general X-ray devices, while also strengthening Shimadzu Corporation's competitive positioning in the South African market.

"The company's strong, geographically dispersed technical support network helps rapidly service device units across the country," stated Naidoo. "Through this, the Shimadzu brand represents service excellence within the general X-ray device market in South Africa."

The company offers technical support in regions that are not accessed by other competitors.  Smaller regions, such as East London and Bloemfontein, are effectively serviced by AXIM's technical staff, enabling it to strengthen customer loyalty to the brand.

"Shimadzu Corporation/AXIM have set the industry standard in terms of service excellence," remarked Naidoo. "The company's strong regional technical support capacity remains the gold standard for other leading competitors in the market."

The company continues to pioneer easy-to-use, highly efficient and top quality products. Currently, it has about seven device model units available in the South African market.  

The top selling model that features mainly within the public sector is the RADspeed Series . An ergonomic design and ease-of-operation have underlined the appeal of this model in public hospital settings.

"With technology research and development conducted in Japan, Shimadzu continues to bring in world-class medical imaging devices to South Africa, thereby aiding in improved diagnosis and patient treatment," concluded Naidoo.

The Frost & Sullivan Award for Market Share Leadership is presented to the company that has demonstrated excellence in capturing the highest market share within its industry.  The Award recognizes the company's leadership position within the industry in terms of revenues or units, as specified.

Frost & Sullivan Best Practices awards recognize companies in a variety of regional and global markets for demonstrating outstanding achievement and superior performance in areas such as leadership, technological innovation, customer service, and strategic product development. Industry analysts compare market participants and measure performance through in-depth interviews, analysis, and extensive secondary research to identify best practices in the industry.

Tourism Development: South Africa Launch “What’s Your BIG 5?” Campaign


South African Tourism North America will unveil its ground-breaking campaign, What’s Your BIG 5? on NBC’s hit series, “All-Star Celebrity Apprentice” this Sunday, April 21st at 9/8PM Central.

A year in the making, the multi-faceted What’s Your BIG 5? platform aims to increase awareness and travel to South Africa by educating travelers through the spectrum of distinct experiences offered only by this destination, beyond its iconic safari. 

Sunday’s episode will bring to life the vibrant culture of South Africa to an astounding six million viewers.  In tandem with the airing, viewers can also enter to win two exclusive VIP tickets to the show’s finale via Visit South Africa on Facebook, view a bonus video featuring one of this season’s celebrity contestants, and book an “All-Star Celebrity Apprentice” travel package exclusively on

“South Africa has become a highly sought-after travel destination, breaking tourism records with double-digit growth in the past three years,” said Ms. Sthu Zungu, President of South African Tourism North America.  “High-profile partnerships like ‘All-Star Celebrity Apprentice’ are one of the many driving forces catapulting our destination into mainstream consciousness, fueling conversations and travel to South Africa like never before.” 

“South Africa is an amazing destination,” said Mr. Donald Trump , executive producer and star of ‘All-Star Celebrity Apprentice.’  “This Sunday’s episode will highlight the magnificence of the country, and I will be going to South Africa soon, it’s one of my favorite places.”

With seven contestants left, watch teams Plan B and Power go head-to-head on this Sunday’s task as they bring South Africa’s rich and diverse travel experiences to millions of homes across the country.  Catch a bonus video of one of the All-Stars living the episode’s electrifying task first-hand in South Africa after Sunday’s airing at 11PM EST on Captivated viewers can also learn more about South Africa’s incredible culture, diversity and friendly people on the website, while booking their very own “All-Star Celebrity Apprentice & What’s Your BIG 5?” travel package.

Additionally, one lucky viewer participating in the show’s launch of “What’s Your BIG 5?” campaign via Visit South Africa on Facebook or @SouthAfrica on Twitter, will win a trip to New York City on May 19th and two VIP tickets for the live finale taping.  The winner and a guest will also be invited to rub elbows with Mr. Trump and the All-Star cast and crew at the exclusive finale after-party. Sweepstakes starts on April 21st and ends on April 29th.

The genesis of the What’s Your BIG 5? campaign starts with the proverbial “BIG 5” of South Africa’s safari animals, a familiar term coined for the destination’s wildlife. South African Tourism North America is re-defining “BIG 5” to underscore the broad range of authentic and distinct experiences South Africa has to offer for travelers of all ages, more than safari.  The face of the What’s Your BIG 5? story is a loveable giraffe character named Zandi, who is the embodiment of South Africa—vibrant, colorful, warm, and friendly.  The campaign officially launches on Sunday with a 360-degree platform including advertising, year-round public relations, trade marketing, and consumer-driven events throughout the year.