South Africa and five other Southern African countries have concluded a new trade agreement with Britain.
The South African Minister of Trade and Industry, Ebrahim Patel say they, together with Lesotho, Eswatini, Namibia, Botswana and Mozambique, made the deal with Britain. The new agreement will govern the bilateral trading relationship between the six countries and Britain after the UK leaves the EU without an agreement or “no-deal Brexit”.
Patel says the South African government have been engaging Britain in the past two years after an announcement to leave the EU and avoid disruption to the country’s exports.
“I am pleased that we have concluded this agreement with the United Kingdom”, he said.
The new agreement will replicate the terms of previous trade on tariffs, quotas, rules of origin and health and safety regulations.
“We are pleased that regardless of the outcomes of these processes, our trading relationship with the United Kingdom can continue without disruption. This is important for the thousands of South African workers whose jobs are dependent on this trade and for the investors who have utilized South Africa as an export base to Britain and the rest of the world”, says Patel.
In 2018, Britain was the fourth largest destination for South African exports, with bilateral trade between the two countries amounting to more than $9.3 billion.
The growth of digital and online marketing in Africa
Is Digital Marketing for Africa? How have businesses gained by marketing online?
Innovative changes have over the years, proven to be a constant. Ways of doing things are changing globally at a rather fast pace; things that affect the way we live, the way we travel, study, do business, run homes and families, interact with others etc.
The influence of innovation is simply overwhelming! One sector that has been touched by the transformative wind of innovation is the business sector. In this article, we are going to evaluate the growth of digital marketing in Africa. Before we dissect the topic, let us first look at the meaning of digital marketing.
What is digital marketing?
Wikipedia defines digital marketing as the marketing of products or services using digital technologies, mainly on the internet, but also including mobile phones, display advertising, and any other digital medium. From the definition provided by Wikipedia, one may sum up the meaning of digital marketing as the use of technologies in marketing as opposed to the traditional ways of marketing we all know.
Before the digital era, marketing and advertisements were only done using traditional methods such as public announcements, newspaper, radio, television, billboards, posters and flyers. Digital marketing on the other hand employ methods such as social media marketing, search engine optimization (SEO), search engine marketing (SEM), e-Commerce marketing, content marketing among other methods.
Advertising has been taken to a whole new level through the help of online marketing. Business owners, especially startups in Africa now save millions hitherto used in running newspaper advertisements and paying for sessions on television channels that expire after a short time. They now spend less than half of that amount to advertise on various digital platforms, which enjoy more audience than the traditional means, including television and newspapers.
The state of online marketing in South Africa
In South Africa, a study by World Wide Worx in collaboration with Cisco Internet Business Solutions Group found that as at the year 2010 the number of South African internet users have grown beyond 5 million. Ever since figures continued to advance upwardly.
By 2016 the number of internet users stood a little below 29 million. That was more than half of South Africa’s 52 million population. With that number of internet users, digital marketing will continue to grow in leaps and bound in South Africa.
Kenya and Digital Marketing
In Kenya, the story is pretty much the same as in South Africa. If you are familiar with Kenya’s marketing terrain, you will understand how big it has grown in a very short period. Just a couple of years ago, expensive traditional methods of marketing still thrived in the country but today the story has changed as around 22% of all media consumption in Kenya is digital.
What is more, this number is growing fast! The German online portal, Statista reported that Internet advertising spending in Kenya is expected to grow from US$72 million in 2015 to US$151 million in 2020.
Digital marketing in Nigeria
Digital Marketing started to gather momentum in Nigeria around 2012 with the entry of e-commerce platforms such as Jumia and Konga in the country. The period between 2015 to 2019 saw a massive increase of Small & Medium Enterprises in the country with a population of 190 million people.
According to Statista, Nigeria had 92.3 million internet users in 2018 and it is projected to grow to 187.8 million internet users in 2023. This was 47.1 per cent of the population in 2018. It is expected to climb to 84.5 per cent in 2023. With 92.3 million people using the internet, the place of digital marketing in Nigeria’s business space has been secured. The prospect for the growth of digital marketing in Nigeria seems pretty good.
From the situation reports in South Africa, Kenya and Nigeria – three of the largest economies in Africa, digital marketing is growing really fast in the continent. The future of Businesses in Africa can now be viewed better through the lens of the digital.
Nigeria extends border closure to January 31
Illegal importation of cheap rice is seen as a major cause of the decision by the Nigerian government to close its borders
Nigerian President, Muhammad Buhari has announced an extension on the country border’s closure with neighbouring countries until 31 January, 2020.
The Nigerian government closed all its land borders two months ago in a bid to stop smugglers and criminals who pose a threat to the country and its economy.
“Mr President has approved the extension of the exercise to January 31, 2020. Consequently, you are requested to convey the development to all personnel for their awareness and guidance,” Victor Dimka, the Deputy Comptroller of Customs in charge of Enforcement, Investigation and Inspectorate, directed in a memo.
Even though the border closure had bore fruit, a few objectives are yet to be achieved.
Illegal importation of cheap rice is seen as a major cause of the decision by the Nigerian government to close its borders.
While some businessmen in the West African country say they have made huge losses since the directive took effect, officials are confident there is more to gain once the desired objectives are achieved.
South Africa to accelerate economic reforms
South Africa’s credit ratings by Moody’s remain investment grade (one notch above non-investment grade
The South African government has pledged to carry out urgent reforms to improve economic performance following the country’s credit rating downgrade from stable to negative.
“The government is fully aware that short- and medium-term reforms are urgently required to improve economic performance over the next several years”, the country’s Treasury said in a statement after international rating agency Moody’s on Friday night downgraded South Africa’s credit rating from “stable” to “negative.”
South Africa’s credit ratings by Moody’s remain investment grade (one notch above non-investment grade but the latest downgrade is seen as the final step before Moody’s strips South Africa of its “investment grade” Baa3 long-term foreign-currency and local-currency issuer rating, which will leave it at “junk.”
Two other major international rating agencies – S&P Global Ratings and Fitch – have placed South Africa’s credit-worthiness to sub-investment grade (commonly known as junk status).
The government also notes the decision by Moody’s to affirm South Africa’s long term foreign and local currency debt ratings at ‘Baa3’ and also revise the outlook to negative from stable.
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