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Continental Re Names Kenyan Head Of Botswana subsidiary2 minutes read

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Continental Reinsurance Plc has announced a change in the ownership structure of in its subsidiary, Continental Reinsurance Ltd (Botswana).

The firm also named Mr Francis Nzwili, a Kenyan, as the Managing Director of the Botswana business.

In a statement on Wednesday, the company said it now holds 100% of the issued ordinary share capital in the subsidiary.

The statement read, “After its recent acquisition of a minority 40% stake in the company, through its holding company, CRe African Investments Limited (“CRAFIL”), from Botswana Insurance Company Ltd (BIC), Continental Reinsurance now holds 100% of the issued ordinary share capital in the subsidiary.”

Continental Reinsurance’s Group Managing Director, Dr Femi Oyetunji, said Mr. Nzwili replaced Mr Cas Hansa as head of the Botswana business.

He said: “The acquisition means not only growth in economic size, but also presents us with an opportunity to enhance our strategic influence and broaden our market appeal through the expansion of stakeholder segments that we actively interact with.

“Building on our talent growth and diversity strategy, we have appointed Mr Francis Nzwili, previously with our Nairobi subsidiary, as Managing Director of the Botswana business. Francis comes on board with a wealth of experience in underwriting and business development that significantly complements the strength of the existing team. The position of Managing Director was previously held by Mr Cas Hansa who has taken up new strategic responsibilities as Group Head: Underwriting and Claims.”

As at half-year 2020, the Group has reported strong growth across all key metrics. Gross premium income at N26.8 billion (USD 71.7 million) reflects a 27 per cent growth over 2019. Underwriting profit at N2.7 billion (USD 6.9 million) grew by 442 per cent (2019: N457 million /USD 1.3 million).

Investment and other income at N1.4 billion/USD 4.6 million (2019: N1.2 billion/USD 3.6 million) reflect a 30 per cent year on year growth. Profit before tax at 4.4 billion/USD 12.3million (2019: N1.1 billion/USD 3.1million) represents a 300 per cent increase.

“The strong contribution to the Group’s half-year results from our entire network with offices in Anglophone West Africa, East Africa, Southern Africa, CIMA and North Africa, is a testament to the resilience wrought by our operating model that is anchored on geographic diversity. We shall continue to adapt and improve this model as we strive for superior efficiency,” said Dr Oyetunji.

“These results come as we brace for the impact of the Covid-19 crisis that continues to unfold. We remain cautiously optimistic regarding prospects for the year, overall, and, in conjunction with our partners, we look forward to better times ahead. We remain fully committed to playing our part in supporting our partners and the wider community through the pandemic, including prioritizing financial donations through industry bodies in our various jurisdictions for sustainable and equitable use for the benefit of local citizens.”

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Sudanese Delegation in UAE for Talks with Emirati, U.S Officials

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The head of Sudan’s ruling council has led a high-level delegation to the United Arab Emirates for separate talks with U.S officials and Emirati, including discussions on its removal from the U.S’s list of countries sponsoring terrorism”, according to state media.

The Sudanese state news agency SUNA disclosed that General Abdel-Fattah al-Burhan, head of the sovereign council which has been ruling the country since the overthrow of President Omar al-Bashir last year, will hold talks with the UAE’s leadership on “all regional issues related to Sudan”.

It added that Sudanese Justice Minister Naser-Eddin Abdelbari will meet U.S officials present in Abu Dhabi to discuss the removal of Sudan from the list of states sponsoring terrorism, support of the transitional period and writing off American debts”.

The Axios website did, however, report that there will be a decisive meeting in Abu Dhabi on Monday which will have in attendance US, Emirati and Sudanese officials. This would be to discuss “possible normalization agreement between Sudan and Israel”, similar to the U.S-brokered deals struck by the UAE and Bahrain in recent weeks.

Citing anonymous sources, Axios said besides the terror delisting, Sudan’s transitional government is asking for “over $3bn in humanitarian assistance and direct budgetary aid” in return for a deal with Israel.

It also seeks to have the U.S and the UAE to commit to providing Sudan with economic aid over the next three years”, Axios reported on Sunday.

In August, U.S Secretary of State Mike Pompeo raised the issue of Sudan establishing ties with Israel during a visit to Khartoum. In response to this, Sudanese Prime Minister Abdalla Hamdok said his government had no mandate to do so, and that such a move could be decided after the end of the transitional period and the holding of elections, which has been planned for 2022.

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Algeria Appoints New Central Bank Governor

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President Abdelmadjid Tebboune has announced Rosthom Fadli as the new governor of the country’s central bank – the Bank of Algeria.

Fadli takes over the post three months after Ayman Abderrahmane left the role after a cabinet reshuffle.

Abderrahmane was appointed Algeria’s Minister of Finance in June by President Tebboune.

Mr Fadli was one of the three vice-governors in the bank at the time.

Following Abderrahmane exit, Fadii was governor of the Bank of Algeria in Acting capacity, a role he held till he was officially named the bank’s governor by President Tebboune.

During an interview with national media officials, the president said that he “signed last week the decree appointing Mr Rosthom Fadhli to the post of governor of the Bank of Algeria”.

Meanwhile, Algeria on September announced it will for the first time launch Islamic insurance, known as takaful, as the government seeks to boost the country’s Islamic finance industry.

Finance Minister Benabderrahmane also said authorities planned to set up banks in neighbouring African countries like Niger and Mali as part of wider economic reforms in the North African nation.

Algeria has announced plans to develop its economy and diversify it from oil and gas after a fall in energy earnings caused financial problems.

That step follows a move by state banks last month to start offering Islamic finance products in a bid to attract money from the parallel market, he said.

The government has said sharia-compliant services would help find new funding sources for the economy, which currently relies heavily on oil and gas export revenues.

The authorities have also said they will open the door for the private sector to set up banks, part of reforms pledged by President Abdelmadjid Tebboune in the banking sector.

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Nigeria to join Agriculture Transformation Initiative – FAO

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FAO Nigeria

The Food and Agriculture Organisation (FAO), an agency of the United Nations says Nigeria has expressed its interest to join the initiative to accelerate agricultural transformation and sustainable rural development.

FAO National Communication Officer, David Tsokar, made this known in a statement in Abuja. The statement said that the country was ready to join the other 20 countries involved in this new initiative.

According to the statement, the initiative  or Hand-in-Hand initiative was launched in 2019 by FAO’s Director General, Qu Dongyu. It is meant to support evidence-based, country-led and country-owned investments for eradicating poverty and ending hunger and all forms of malnutrition.

All of which will lead to the attainment of the Sustainable Development Goals particularly goals number one and two on poverty eradication and ending hunger,”

The statement said that through the initiative, FAO would bring its technical expertise in all areas of its mandate, with emphasis on innovation and digital technologies.

FAO, however, assured commitment to support the country’s development through the initiative, innovation digitalisation of agriculture and called for a quick ratification and domestication of pending international legal instruments.

According to the statement, the minister of Agriculture, Sabo Nanono said the initiative was a good one and timely for the country to ensure food security and nutrition to all Nigerians.

The statement said that the minister directed that a letter expressing Nigeria’s interest to take part in the initiative be drafted immediately.

He also nominated a focal point from the Ministry, to liaise with the FAO team and other Government experts from the National Bureau of Statistics (NBS) in assembling required data for analysis.

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