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How the UK election will affect trade

August 2018: Theresa May meets Cyril Ramaphosa on a trade mission to South Africa, Nigeria and Kenya designed to bolster the UK's post-Brexit fortunes. Pic: Stefan Rousseau/PA Archive/PA Images
August 2018: Theresa May meets Cyril Ramaphosa on a trade mission to South Africa, Nigeria and Kenya designed to bolster the UK's post-Brexit fortunes. Pic: Stefan Rousseau/PA Archive/PA Images

Whatever happens in Britain's general election, the uncertainty over its trade policy, including ties with Africa, will continue next year

A win for the Conservatives in the election on 12 December would mean Britain's formal exit from the European Union early next year. That would be followed by years of trade negotiations between Britain and the rest of the world. But in the short-term there would be several interim arrangements, rolling over the terms of trade that Britain signed up to as a member of the EU.


Prize fight

The 2019 Nobel Peace Prize goes to Ethiopian Prime Minister Abiy Ahmed. Pic: Lise Aserud/TT News Agency/PA Images
The 2019 Nobel Peace Prize goes to Ethiopian Prime Minister Abiy Ahmed. Pic: Lise Aserud/TT News Agency/PA Images

Selected as a Nobel Peace Laureate, the Prime Minister faces mayhem in his home region

Prime Minister Abiy Ahmed is pushing to merge all the ruling Ethiopian Peoples' Revolutionary Democratic Front's regional member organisations, as well as affiliated ruling parties...

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Two-track talks on the grand dam

Trump meets Sudan, Egypt and Ethiopia FMs over GERD. Pic:  Shealah Craighead/DPA/PA Images
Trump meets Sudan, Egypt and Ethiopia FMs over GERD. Pic: Shealah Craighead/DPA/PA Images

Sisi wants Trump's help to break the impasse with Ethiopia over the Nile dam. They meet in Washington but Addis insists nothing will change

Two negotiating tracks are emerging over the potential flashpoint between Egypt, Ethiopia and Sudan over the effects of the Grand Ethiopian Renaissance Dam on the flow of the Nile....

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Where's the plan?

Copyright © Africa Confidential 2019
Copyright © Africa Confidential 2019

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After the government's brutally honest budget statement, unions and business are pushing rival policies to boost jobs and growth

The sense of a return to the Mandela spirit in the wake of South Africa's 32-12 victory over England in the Rugby World Cup final on 2 November has quickly come up against economic...


Fighting within the ranks

EFF volunteers at work. Johannesburg, April 2019. Pic: Kate Bartlett/DPA/PA Images
EFF volunteers at work. Johannesburg, April 2019. Pic: Kate Bartlett/DPA/PA Images

The EFF leadership is facing challenges from within amid allegations of corruption at the top of the party

Julius Malema's Economic Freedom Fighters has always prided itself on being a cohesive unit speaking with one voice but with a month to go before the party's elective conference, c...


Command economics on trial

Copyright © Africa Confidential 2019
Copyright © Africa Confidential 2019

As Africa’s biggest economy slows down with dangerous political consequences, policy-makers are looking for radical solutions

With economic growth failing to keep pace with population growth, and the country far too dependent on oil and gas exports, President Muhammadu Buhari is trying to deal with critic...


Two visions lock horns

Algiers 1 November 2019. Algerians take part in an anti-government demonstration. Pic:  Farouk Batiche/DPA/PA Images
Algiers 1 November 2019. Algerians take part in an anti-government demonstration. Pic: Farouk Batiche/DPA/PA Images

The military is digging in and it will take more than weekly demos to dislodge the autocrats

The activists of El Hirak ('the movement'), who have been pitting thousands of protestors against the sclerotic ruling class every Friday for nine months, had high hopes of forcing...


Coalition of the unwilling

Saïed's first challenge as president is forming a government from a parliament split among 21 parties

Parliamentary and presidential run-off elections in October have taken Tunisia into the unknown. Public disillusionment with the post-2011 political establishment resulted in very ...


Dancing the third-term tango

Condé appears prepared to crush massive opposition in order to secure a third term of office, regardless of the dangers to society

The idea that President Alpha Condé would get the required two-thirds parliamentary majority to change the constitution to allow him to seek a third term has always been far-fetche...


Addis calling

The race is on to snap up the two new telecom licences Ethiopia plans to award by the end of March. Kenyan SafariCom is teaming up with parent group Vodacom, while other multinatio...


Islamic state onslaught

The death of at least 49 Malian soldiers in an attack on their base at Indélimane on 1 November confirms the continued potency of Islamic State in the Greater Sahara (ISGS) ...


Delta pollution damned

John Sentamu. Pic:  Dominic Lipinski/PA Archive/PA Images
John Sentamu. Pic: Dominic Lipinski/PA Archive/PA Images

'Environmental genocide' was the label the Archbishop of York, John Sentamu, hung on the decades of multinational oil company operations in Nigeria's Niger Delta at the 1 November ...

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Water cannon fodder

The assault on leading oppositionist Kizza Besigye by police on his way to a Forum for Democratic Change meeting on 4 November was the latest in a series of violent crackdowns on t...


Ruto-Raila (round one)

The by-election campaigns for Kibra (previously Kibera), Kenya's largest slum, near downtown Nairobi, turned into a full-dress rehearsal of the political contest between Deputy Pre...


BDP ends Khama's fightback

BDP supporters gather as ballots are counted in Gaborone on 24 October 2019. Pic: Tshekiso Tebalo/Xinhua/PA Images
BDP supporters gather as ballots are counted in Gaborone on 24 October 2019. Pic: Tshekiso Tebalo/Xinhua/PA Images

The ruling party’s decisive election victory has ended ex-President Ian Khama's campaign to unseat President Mokgweetsi Masisi

The Botswana Democratic Party won a new five-year mandate by a larger margin than expected on 23 October, taking 38 of the 57 seats in parliament, one more than in 2014, while the ...


Fury over ambassador's exit

Dr. Arikana Chihombori-Quao
Dr. Arikana Chihombori-Quao

Critics blame 'neo-colonial' pressures on the African Union for the sacking of its ambassador to the US but its Addis HQ insists they are parting on good terms

A furore has broken out over the dismissal of the African Union's ambassador to the United States, Dr. Arikana Chihombori-Quao, by AU Commission Chairman Moussa Faki Mahamat. The A...

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Frelimo takes no chances

President Nyusi arrives in Sochi for Russia-Africa Economic Forum. Pic: Alexander Ryumin/Tass/PA Images
President Nyusi arrives in Sochi for Russia-Africa Economic Forum. Pic: Alexander Ryumin/Tass/PA Images

Despite claims that the election was won through fraud and violence, the results will stand and strengthen the President’s hand

President Filipe Nyusi has won a second and final term of office with the second-largest majority since multi-party elections began in 1994. The election win – which included...

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Up against the slowdown

Copyright © Africa Confidential 2019
Copyright © Africa Confidential 2019

As growth ebbs in 90% of the world’s economies, Africa is trying to swim against the tide

The annual meeting of the International Monetary Fund and World Bank between 14 and 20 October in Washington DC was one of the gloomiest for decades, with economists competing to o...


The price of legitimacy

The President must hold elections that look fair if he is to win the wider acceptance he craves

After their boycott of the 2018 legislative polls failed to extract concessions from the regime of President Faure Gnassingbé, most of the opposition is returning to the electoral ...


The politics of counter-terror

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Copyright © Africa Confidential 2019

The government issues appeals to the West and the region for solidarity and money to resist the jihadist onslaught

Soldiers, civilians, worshippers at a mosque were but some of the dozens of victims of Islamist guerrillas in Burkina as the pace of jihadist attacks on civilians and security forc...


Backs to the wall

The speed of the jihadists’ campaign has caught the government off-guard and exposed the woeful inadequacy of the security forces

This year the country has experienced more violent attacks in six months than the whole of the previous three years, causing hundreds of thousands to flee their homes while the arm...


Short circuits

A US aid agency and President Akufo-Addo’s government are clashing over a plan to reform the state power company

The government's cancellation of a contract with a business consortium to manage the Electricity Company of Ghana (ECG) has put it at odds with the United States government and cos...


Tuna bonds in Brooklyn

Privinvest salesman Jean Boustani's trial on money-laundering charges in connection with Mozambique's $2 billion hidden loan scandal started in New York on 14 October.