The Helmet Feeds Stay updated with every news article on your favorite constrcution news site. http://the-helmet.com/ http://the-helmet.com/news/Finance/2014/09/02/Study_highlights_Investment_Opportunities_in_Sub-Saharan_Africa Study highlights Investment Opportunities in Sub-Saharan Africa Investment Opportunities

Infrastructure, tourism, trade and agriculture are investment opportunities for Dubai based companies. Increase in economic reforms, rising fiscal spending and ties with fast growing economies in Asia, support economic activities in Sub-Saharan Africa

Ahead of the 2nd Africa Global Business Forum (AGBF) taking place this October in Dubai, the Dubai Chamber of Commerce and Industry, in collaboration with the Economist Intelligence Unit (EIU), has developed a detailed study highlighting economic and investment potential in Sub-Saharan Africa.

 

Ghana

Ghana offers a relatively business-friendly environment, however poor infrastructure remains a major obstacle. For retailers, Ghana has the potential to become the gateway to West Africa's 250m consumers.

According to the study, market opportunities are moderate. Mining communities and tourists in coastal towns and the much anticipated growth in population - expected to double in 20 years - will contribute to the development of the retail sector.

Ghana's GDP growth will average 7.5% annually until 2017, driven by the expansion of gold mines and burgeoning oil and gas sector.

 

Tanzania

The study states that tourism in Tanzania is a vital source of revenue and the economy remains dependent on agriculture and mining.

Real GDP growth is expected to average 7.1% up to 2017, assuming tourism, agriculture, trade and investment pick up while growth in construction will be robust, led by investments in the gas industry and infrastructure projects.

FDI exceeds US$2bn and is expected to increase by 20% per year up to 2017. Mining is the largest source of FDI followed by telecoms and construction. Agriculture has also been targeted by the government as a source of future FDI.

 

Nigeria

Nigeria emerges as a strong destination for investments in telecoms and retail mainly due to the large population (20% of the Sub-Saharan Africa). It is also a key market to multinationals.

Nigeria's FDI has exceeded US$6bn mainly in the energy sector. Owing to the investment in oil and gas, the economy will remain robust but will not be sufficient for a sizeable improvement in living standard.

Growth is expected to continue until 2017 owing to the investment in the oil and gas sector. Non-oil growth will be robust, led by telecoms, trade and infrastructure.

 

Kenya

Kenya's economy has developed into a market-led hub for East Africa's telecoms, retail and tourism sectors.

Growth will pick up to 5.1% a year on average as banking, telecoms and the middle class continue to develop. Prices of food and oil, and drought threat remain key risks.

FDIs are under US$0.5bn targeting mainly telecoms and financial services.

 

Economic Reforms

H.E. Hamad Buamim, President and CEO, Dubai Chamber, highlighted that the increase in economic reforms, rising fiscal spending and ties with fast growing economies in Asia are the main factors supporting the economy in Sub-Saharan Africa adding that the AGBF will shed a light on the economic and investment realities in Africa and will give business leaders and decision-makers from Africa, Dubai and the wider GCC region an ideal platform to discuss business partnerships and opportunities.Economic reforms

The study states that investment opportunities are particularly significant in the telecoms sector. Although there are over half a billion mobile subscribers, most countries are still far from saturation and internet access is still almost non-existent in many countries.

It emphasises that with the emergence of middle class in Sub-Saharan Africa, formal retail is starting to develop, offering "value" products aimed at lower income customers while infrastructure needs are enormous, with an estimated US$100bn a year required by the power sector alone.

The President and CEO of Dubai Chamber further stressed that this study is one in a series of studies on Africa developed by the Chamber, and is aimed at introducing businesses in Dubai to investment opportunities available in the continent.

Non-oil trade between Dubai and Ghana accounted for almost AED8.9bn in 2013. Imports accounted for around AED7.4bn and exports and re-exports around AED1.5bn.

Ghana ranks 34th on the list of Dubai trade partners. The most traded commodities include agricultural products, foodstuff, precious stones and metals, wood and construction material.

Challenges, opportunities and cooperation between African and Dubai based companies will be discussed further by leaders and businessmen attending AGBF in October.

 

Source: African Media Agency/Business Ghana

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http://the-helmet.com/news/Finance/2014/09/02/Study_highlights_Investment_Opportunities_in_Sub-Saharan_Africa Tue, 02 Sep 2014 13:15:29 -0500
http://the-helmet.com/news/Building/2014/09/02/Ghana:_Property_developers_urged_to_adopt_modern_advertisement_media Ghana: Property developers urged to adopt modern advertisement media Participants at Tonaton event

Faced with the rising costs of advertising, which is impacting negatively on sales volumes in the property market, Tonaton.com, Ghana’s largest marketplace has urged property developers to move away from traditional 

marketing platforms and adopt new techniques to stand out and woo homebuyers. From print, radio and television through personalized selling to staging 

special fairs, property developers seem to be trying out all possibilities to raise their visibility in a cluttered marketplace as well as drum up consumer interest. This seems to have created a deep hole in the marketing budgets of property developers across the country.

"The real estate market has been inundated by different marketing and customer trends, particularly in the wake of globalization, which has not only spawned many new lifestyle trends, but has also made today's homebuyers smarter and more informed. This explains why developers must see the need to seriously start going beyond the obvious tools of marketing, with its transience and geographical limitations” says Estelle Westling, Head of  Tonaton.com at a special event to interact with real estate developers at the Paloma Hotel in Accra.

Talking on the issue of varying the tools of marketing to effectively connect with a global clientele, Millicent Ofori-Boateng, Marketing Manager, Day Spring Real Estate remarked that online advertising has exposed her properties to clients outside of Ghana. “Gone are the days when only people from this vicinity would be the ones calling to enquire about the houses. Thanks to Tonaton.com, I now receive calls from London, Tamale, Kumasi and Takoradi”.

In his contribution, Mr. Sammy Amegayibor, Acting Executive Secretary of the Ghana Real Estate Developers Association (GREDA) stated that property developers have been benefiting hugely since Tonaton.com launched her operations in Ghana last year. He admonished property developers and housing agents to list their properties on Ghana’s largest marketplace. “Tonaton.com is a highly effective platform which complements our sales and marketing effort at no cost. Additionally they have Account Executives who visit our premises to help us upload our ads, which makes it easy for those of us whose computer skills are sub-optimal. Tonaton.com, Ghana’s largest marketplace, is an effective platform to reach out to plenty of customers at a time.” He concluded.

Since entering the Ghana market,  Tonaton.com  has been at the forefront of innovations and are continuously looking for novel strategies with which the outfit can help property developers reach their customers in a more cost-effective way. Besides the normal posting of ads; one of the most recent and out-of-the box initiatives, for instance, has been the introduction of 'Top Ads', which offers developers the opportunity of paying only GHc21.00 per week to have their ad constantly remain at the top of their search pages. This is in addition to online banner ads, which improves branding and traffic to the websites of the real estate developers who use this option.

Tyrone Adu, Digital Marketing Manager, Devtraco Limited briefly commented on the improvements in branding and traffic figures for his company after putting up a banner ad on Tonaton.com. “I have been running a banner ad on Tonaton.com in the last 7 months and the results are very impressive. Because Tonaton.com is categorized, our banner on the properties section is relevant to the clients we are targeting who click on the banner to see what we also have on our website. Visitors tend to spend more time looking for what they intend buying on Tonaton.com compared to the other websites we advertise with which is very good for our kind of business”, he concluded. 

Some of the notable property developers who attended the event included Regimanuel Grey, Devtraco, Top Kings, Speed and Regency View Estates among others. They commended Tonaton.com for step-changing the online classifieds market with their continuous innovations. They were unanimous when it came to the functionality of the website in terms of how it has been simply categorized, the clean pages and a lower rate of visitors who navigate way from site after viewing only one page. 

Tonaton.com currently has over 19,000 properties listed for rent or sale by businesses and individuals. The website has over 650,000 unique visitors per month and is now ranked as the second most visited local website in Ghana according to Alexa.com. Property developers and other advertisers can therefore take advantage of these high numbers to drive sales for their products.  Interested buyers or tenants from all over the world can now find a room to rent on Tonaton.com from GHc50 per month at Ashaiman or buying a beautiful home in East Legon at GHc770, 000.


Source: ghanaweb.com

 

 

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http://the-helmet.com/news/Building/2014/09/02/Ghana:_Property_developers_urged_to_adopt_modern_advertisement_media Tue, 02 Sep 2014 12:13:43 -0500
http://the-helmet.com/news/Energy/2014/09/02/Ghana_to_benefit_from_Singapore_Oil_and_Gas_Technology_Transfer Ghana to benefit from Singapore Oil and Gas Technology Transfer  

Kofi Buah with Singapore gov't rep

The government of Singapore has agreed to a proposal from the Minister of Energy and Petroleum Emmanuel Armah-Kofi Buah for 15 engineers and 40 technicians to undertake various training programs in oil and gas to enable them return to Ghana with the country’s second floating, production, storage and offloading (FPSO) unit and manage it.

Mr Kofi Buah was able to seal the deal in a discussion with Mr S Iswaran, Singapore’s Second Minister for Ministry of Home Affairs and Ministry of Trade and Industry after series of deliberations over permits and nature of training programs.

Explaining what caused the delay in granting permit to the technicians and engineers, Mr Iswaran said it is inevitable for a country like Singapore to bring people from other countries to complement their expertise; however, their challenge was making sure they add value and not put strain on their resources.

He added that the Singapore government is making frantic efforts to tighten laws relating to Singapore companies and institutions engaging foreigners, nevertheless, after considering diplomatic and trade relationship between the two countries over the years and Singapore’s quest to contribute to the development of Ghana in particular, the 15 engineers were granted one year permit each while the 40 technicians were granted six months permit.

Mr S Iswaran commended Armah-Kofi Buah for his leadership role in putting in place legislations and setting up institutions such as the Petroleum Commission and the passage of the Local Content Policy to ensure transparency and active participation of indigenous companies in the oil and gas sector.

The Energy and Petroleum Minister on his part commended Singapore Government for its role in ensuring Ghana becomes a hub for oil and gas in Sub-Sahara Africa, describing Singapore as one of Ghana’s sources of strength in the oil and gas industry.

He noted that government has been keen on arranging training programs in oil and gas because “we want Ghanaians to be in charge of the second FPSO when it arrives in Ghana and also prepare for a transition process in order for as many Ghanaians as possible to spearhead activities in the oil and gas sector in the near future”.

Mr Buah underscored the need for governments in Africa to work towards connecting businesses to each other to understand themselves for successful partnerships.

The Minister also mentioned measures government is putting in place to ensure that the engineers and technicians to be trained in Singapore are “bonded” and will return on completion of their programs to contribute to the growth of Ghana’s oil and gas industry.


Source: ghanaweb.com

 

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http://the-helmet.com/news/Energy/2014/09/02/Ghana_to_benefit_from_Singapore_Oil_and_Gas_Technology_Transfer Tue, 02 Sep 2014 12:03:40 -0500
http://the-helmet.com/news/Energy/2014/09/02/Ghana:_Atuabo_Gas_Plant_to_help_optimize_tarrifs Ghana: Atuabo Gas Plant to help optimize tarrifs  

PURCThe Public Utilities and Regulatory Commission (PURC) has assured Ghanaians that the successful completion of the gas processing project at Atuabo in the Ellembelle District of the Western Region will help optimize the tariffs regime in the country.

This came to light when members of the Technical Committee of PURC paid a visit to the gas processing project site at Atuabo to assess the level of work at Atuabo.
The nation is likely to gain about $1 billion per year when the gas project becomes fully operational to ease pressure on the country’s foreign exchange.
The country is currently using crude oil to power its thermal plants, which is expensive.
The Atuabo Gas Plant would provide an initial 120 million cubic feet of gas per day to the Aboadze Thermal Plant to generate electricity and Liquefied Petroleum Gas (LPG) for domestic use.

Dr Emmanuel Annan, Board Chairman of PURC, who led the Technical Committee, indicated that upon completion, the project would help to reduce the tariffs paid by consumers or maintain the current tariffs.
He explained that the project would help provide cheap, reliable and efficient electricity supply to Ghanaians, adding that “the higher the cost of fuel in power generation, the higher the tariffs.”
He expressed satisfaction with the level of work at the gas processing plant at Atuabo.
The Director of Public Relations and External Affairs of PURC, Nana Yaa Gyantua, indicated that “gas is a cheap source of energy as compared to crude oil, which is used by government and other independent power-producing companies.” The Technical Committee members earlier visited the Volta River Authority (VRA) and the Aboadze Thermal Plant to learn at first-hand the operational challenges hampering the production of electricity in the country.
The proposed plans and programmes were presented to the Technical Committee.
Nana Yaa Gyantuah said the visit was also to find out how the management of the VRA was trying to improve the power situation.
Nana Yaa Jantuah added that the committee was committed to ensuring the deliver of quality utility services to consumers.
Stephen Owusu, Maintenance Engineer and Manager at the VRA, noted that the gas project would enhance the company’s operations.
He said currently the country spends millions of dollars daily on crude oil and that with the production of gas from Atuabo, the country would spend half of the amount spent on crude oil.
Mr. Owusu however added that the gas would only complement and ensure availability but would not halt the power outages that the country was facing.

 


Source: spyghana.com

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http://the-helmet.com/news/Energy/2014/09/02/Ghana:_Atuabo_Gas_Plant_to_help_optimize_tarrifs Tue, 02 Sep 2014 11:53:44 -0500
http://the-helmet.com/news/Mining/2014/09/02/Mining:_Ghana_develops_new_Environmental_Plan_for_Mining Mining: Ghana develops new Environmental Plan for Mining The Environmental Protection Agency (EPA), has developed the AKOBEN programme to carry out its mandate in conformity with the principles of the National Environment Policy.EPA log

A statement issued by the Artisanal and Small Scale Mining Africa-Network (ASMAN) says the programmes an environmental performance rating and disclosure initiative of the EPA.

Under the initiative, the environmental performance of mining operations with the exclusion of small scale mining operators are monitored and assessed in line with set standards as well as Environmental Impact Assessments guidelines.

The statement issued by Nii Adjetey-Kofi Mensah in Accra and copied to Ghana News Agency, said: “We understand AKOBEN is to serve as a monitoring and verification programme to ensure that companies follow environmental regulations on a continual basis.

It said a recent two-day international roundtable on Reducing Environmental Health Impacts of Harmful Pollutants in the Africa Region organised by the World Bank in collaboration with the EPA, in Accra, there were deliberations on the dangerous impact of pollutants in general such as e-waste and mercury use in the small scale mining sector.

Additionally, collaborative efforts within and outside the countries of concern as well as efforts been made for reduction and elimination of contaminations were discussed.

“We at ASMAN wish to remind the EPA that following our submission made at the conference on the subject-matter in relation to small scale mining in Ghana; we are still expectant of a major policy move to ensure the institutionalisation of the AKOBEN model for the small scale mining industry in order to halt the current trend where small scale miners have illegally graduated from the mercury-abuse to the usage of unauthorised cyanide.

“ASMAN also notes with grave concern the lack of education and development of national plans on Artisanal and Small Scale Gold Mining (ASGM) including a public health strategy that addresses awareness-raising on the Minamata Convention on Mercury,” the statement said.

It said as a step to substantially reduce the use of mercury in ASGM, ASMAN saw the introduction of the ThermEx Retort by the United Nations Industrial Development Organisation in collaboration with the Minerals Commission of Ghana, as a step in the right direction; but the accompanying challenge posed by the use the retort had not been evaluated, for subsequent enforcement.

The statement said it is an open knowledge that mercury exposure in ASGM communities is associated with adverse health effects including kidney dysfunction, autoimmune and neurological symptoms.

“ASMAN therefore wish to propose that whilst the World Bank continues to use roundtable to solving remediation of the contaminations; the EPA should adopt an all-inclusive approach (with small scale miners), to produce a reference document for remediation and enhance the fallen image of the ASM Sector in Ghana.

“ASMAN takes this opportunity to remind the Chief Programme Officer, Mining Department of EPA, Mr Ransford Sekyi of the Agencies assurance on instituting a customised version of the AKOBEN programme for the Small Scale Mining Sector in Ghana.”


Source: ghanaweb.com

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http://the-helmet.com/news/Mining/2014/09/02/Mining:_Ghana_develops_new_Environmental_Plan_for_Mining Tue, 02 Sep 2014 10:51:16 -0500
http://the-helmet.com/news/Energy/2014/09/01/Ghana:_Solar_Energy:_A_viable_alternative_to_energy_challenges_in_Ghana Ghana: Solar Energy: A viable alternative to energy challenges in Ghana Solar energy

Dr Osei Darkwa, Presient of Ghana Technology University College has urged government to adopt Solar Photovoltaic Energy Systems to ease the perpetual energy crises, mitigate against the high energy cost and avert environmental hazards linked to fossil fuel.

He said the looming energy shortage coupled with environmental problems, associated with the use of oil and gas must influence the nation to invest in a much-expanded clean energy supply like Solar Photovoltaic (PV) Energy Systems.

Speaking at the launch of Solar PV training programme over the weekend, Dr Darkwa noted that the adoption of solar PV energy would help the nation meet the growing demand for alternative energy, such as solar energy and also avoid concerns over environmental problems posed by fossil fuels.

He explained that Ghana’s energy crisis has been largely driven by the high demand for power for both residential and commercial, use as well as high operational costs among others, which accounts for the current power crisis being faced by the nation.

He said the current crisis of inadequate and unreliable energy supply and the high utility costs to consumers can be curtailed and called for a critical look at alternative sources of affordable energy to support the country’s economic growth.

“Solar energy is one of the most promising alternative energy options in the future because it is known to be non.-polluting, clean, and have minimal operation costs,” he said.

He added: “Ghana is well positioned with adequate radiation to generate sustainable solar power for consumption almost throughout the entire year.”

Ghana’s energy policy targets increase solar power generation capacity from the current level of 2,000 megawatts to 5,000 megawatts and develop a non-constrained transmission network by 2020.

It also intends to achieve 10 per cent contribution of modern renewable energy in the electricity-mix by 2020.

But the GTUC President said to reach that target, the energy sector needed to educate engineers in the fundamental principles of solar systems.

Dr Darkwa also said the problem inhibiting the roll out of Solar as an alternative source of energy directly contributes to the negative impact of the energy crises on socio-economic development, evident in the soaring prices, high production costs and living standards.

He said the greater deployment of solar systems would require an increased need for qualified personnel with thorough knowledge of installation, maintenance and trouble shooting skills.

Mr Joseph Walker, National President of the Ghana Electrical Contractors Association said : “Ghana currently lacks qualified personnel who can install and maintain solar PV energy systems,” a situation he said, was affecting efficiency and rate of deployment of solar PV in the country.

He expressed regret that there was no institution in the country that provides formal or structured technical skills training and development on solar system installation and maintenance, targeted at electrical contractors and artisans.


Source: GNA / vibeghana.com

 

 

 

 

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http://the-helmet.com/news/Energy/2014/09/01/Ghana:_Solar_Energy:_A_viable_alternative_to_energy_challenges_in_Ghana Mon, 01 Sep 2014 09:22:17 -0500
http://the-helmet.com/news/Mining/2014/09/01/Illegal_Mining:_Ghana_still_on_course_to_end__menace Illegal Mining: Ghana still on course to end menace Government says it will not relent on its decision to eradicate the activities of both Ghanaian and foreign illegal miners operating on AngloGold Ashanti concessions in Obuasi and Amansie Central districts.

“I warn both Ghanaian and foreign illegal miners operating on AngloGold Ashanti concessions in the Obuasi and Amansie Central districts to pack up and leave, as the government has not relented in its decision to eradicate their activities at all costs.”

Dr. Samuel Sarpong, Ashanti Regional Minister, gave the warning at a meeting with Assemblymen and women at the Obuasi Municipal Assembly.

“Illegal mining activities continue to pose serious threats to the security and development of people in the region. “In spite of the numerous interventions made to fight the menace at national, regional and district levels through the security councils, some people continue to engage in illegal mining activities to the detriment of our natural resources and reserves.”

Dr. Sarpong explained that in his bid to give a lasting blow to illegal mining activities in Obuasi and other mining communities in the region, the Ashanti Regional Security Council has set up the Anti-Galamsey Committee to ensure responsible mining in order to reduce the destruction and pollution associated with illegal mining activities in the region.

He urged stakeholders in the municipality, particularly the chiefs and members of the municipal security council, to work together to inject sanity into the small-scale mining industry in the region.

More than 10,000 illegal miner are believed to be working on AngloGold Ashanti Obuasi and Amansie Central district concession, though legally any individual or group other than AngloGold Ashanti prospecting, exploring, mining and processing gold is engaged in illegal activity.

While the Chinese and other foreign illegal miners with sophiscated pieces of equipment are working destructively in river beds with deadly chemicals such as mercury, their Ghanaian counterparts are using hard rock explosives on the core areas of the Obuasi operation.

Both have total disregard for their safety and the safety of the people in the communities, as well as the safety of AngloGold Ashanti employees and dependents.

The worrying trend in illegal mining these days is that the local illegal miners have been acquiring explosives illegally from some of the explosives manufacturers and distributors and are freely using them in their activities, though the laws of the country do not allow the sale of explosives to illegal users.

“In Obuasi the illegal miners, irrespective of their colour and origin, are all violently and irresponsibly abusing the AngloGold Ashanti ore-body; destroying forest, polluting water bodies and killing livelihoods of the poor people in the communities -- with the active support of local politicians, chiefs and other landowners,” Dr. Sarpong said.

 

Source: www.ghanaweb.com

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http://the-helmet.com/news/Mining/2014/09/01/Illegal_Mining:_Ghana_still_on_course_to_end__menace Mon, 01 Sep 2014 09:15:11 -0500
http://the-helmet.com/news/Finance/2014/08/30/Ghana:_World_Bank_Offers_Ghana_More_Financial_Support Ghana: World Bank Offers Ghana More Financial Support Ghana's Capital - AccraAccra — THE World Bank has pledged financial support to Ghana's government public-private partnership (PPP) initiative.

The Country Director for Ghana, Liberia and Sierra Leone, Yusufa Crookes, who made the pledge, said the bank was impressed Ghana could leverage private capital through the PPPs, which could be used to bridge the country's yawning infrastructure deficit.

The monetary value of the deficit is currently estimated at US$7.5 billion over the next five years, and would require an annual investment of US$1.5 billion to be bridged, according to economists.

Given that budgetary allocations cannot meet that amount, Crookes said PPPs came in handy hence the bank's decision to give the initiative its financial backing.

"Where you have a (PPP) process completed, a defined private sector investor identified and selected, they may need financing.

"We are standing ready, through the World Bank Group, to provide whatever financial products those investors might need to realise their ability to partner government in developing any specific infrastructure they may have been selected for," he said during a conference.

C-NERGY Ghana, the local subsidiary of investment advisory firm, C-NERGY Global, in partnership with the Ministry of Finance, organised the event,.

A Director of C-NERGY Global Holdings, Michael Cobblah, indicated that the company was prepared to offer the technical expertise needed to ensure a smooth execution of PPP projects in the country.

The Minister of State responsible for Private Sector Development and PPP, Rashid Pelpuo, assured the participants that the government was in the process of providing the legal framework that would enable the private sector to partner public institutions in the provision of public infrastructure.

 

 

Source: CAJNewsAfrica/AllAfrica.com

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http://the-helmet.com/news/Finance/2014/08/30/Ghana:_World_Bank_Offers_Ghana_More_Financial_Support Sat, 30 Aug 2014 18:39:13 -0500
http://the-helmet.com/news/Finance/2014/08/30/Ghana:_World_Bank_Project_Expands_to_Offer_More_Opportunities_for_Poorest_Women Ghana: World Bank Project Expands to Offer More Opportunities for Poorest Women

A community workforce working on the Zanlerigu Small Earth Dam in the Nabdam Distict in the Upper East Region of Ghana. 

Desmond Desduam, Ghana Social Opportunities Project Implementing Unit

ACCRA, August 26, 2014 – On any weekday in deprived districts throughout the country, it is common to see community members helping to rehabilitate roads that lead to rural areas and other community facilities such as small earth dams. Not only are the community members gaining experience and being paid for their work through the Labor-Intensive Public Works (LIPW) program, they are also helping to build the local infrastructure; to date, 69 feeder roads, 50 small earth dams and dugouts, 1,206 hectares of woodlots and tree crops planted have been delivered through the LIPW program, generating 5,132,021 person days of employment, all within the last three years.


"The Ghana Social Opportunities Project supports Ghana’s efforts to fight poverty in the country’s poorest regions and to ensure that poor and vulnerable households are not left behind as the economy grows"
Yusupha Crookes (World Bank Group country director for Ghana)

The LIPW is just one part of the Ghana Social Opportunities Project (GSOP), which recently received additional financing from the World Bank Group. The project aims to reduce poverty and expand social opportunities for the poorest people through public works employment and grants for poor households.

“The Ghana Social Opportunities Project supports Ghana’s efforts to fight poverty in the country’s poorest regions and to ensure that poor and vulnerable households are not left behind as the economy grows,” said Yusupha Crookes, World Bank Group country director for Ghana. “This will build on Ghana’s gains in recent decades, which include reducing the poverty rate from 52% in 1992 to 28% in 2006, and help the country to make faster progress towards the Millennium Development Goals.”

The $50 million in additional financing will be used to extend the LIPW program from 49 to 60 districts, as well as increase the number of grants from 100,000 to 150,000 poor households through the Livelihood Empowerment against Poverty (LEAP) program. The LEAP program is designed to help alleviate short-term poverty by providing cash transfers and health insurance to extremely poor households across the country.

In addition, social protection systems will be strengthened through improved targeting and the establishment of a National Household Registry, which seeks to provide a database of poor households across the country to aid the targeting efforts of all social protection programs. The registry will help expand the scope of social protection initiatives, and allow more accurate selection of households based on socioeconomic status.

Janet Kundija, a mother of two, earned GHc168.00 working during the rehabilitation of Gbare-Bombaa-Yibile feeder road in Jirapa District of the Upper West Region. Kundija said she used her earnings to pay for her children’s school fees, laborers who prepared a one acre land for her soya beans and groundnut farm, and she also bought seeds and other necessities for her farm. She has also started a business of preparing and selling ‘koose,’ a local brand of doughnut made from beans, to members of her community every Sunday.

At mid-year review in February 2014, a total of 298 sub-projects made up of school blocks and clinics, feeder roads, small earth dams and dugouts and climate change mitigation activities have been completed. Another 168 sub-projects are under implementation. The ongoing public works program has already exceeded the original 13,000 beneficiaries targeted, with over 80,000 people benefiting directly. Climate change public works projects have been the most labor-intensive, followed by small earth dams and dugouts, roads and social infrastructure.

Both the public works and household grant programs have achieved success in reaching women;  60% of public works beneficiaries and 69% of household grant beneficiaries so far have been female, helping to empower women and increase their income.

“In Sakoti in the Nabdam Distict of the Upper East Region for instance, over 180 women gave testimony of how but for their involvement in the LIPW program, they would have migrated to urban towns to engage in menial jobs such as  head potter, a phenomena that is commonly referred to as ‘kayayo.’” said Robert Austin, National GSOP coordinator.

In the past three years, the World Bank Group has supported 14 projects in Ghana, totaling $956 million. Of this amount, infrastructure received the most support with $316 million. Education, health, and social protection projects received $274 million, while agriculture and fisheries received $200.3 million and $130 million going to public sector management and reform. The additional financing of the GSOP will be implemented by the Ministry of Local Government and Rural Development and the Ministry of Gender, Children and Social Protection, and will run until 2017. 

 

Source: World Bank

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http://the-helmet.com/news/Finance/2014/08/30/Ghana:_World_Bank_Project_Expands_to_Offer_More_Opportunities_for_Poorest_Women Sat, 30 Aug 2014 18:25:37 -0500
http://the-helmet.com/news/General/2014/08/30/BAUMA_CONEXPO_AFRICA_Moves_to_Three-Year_Cycle_After_2015 BAUMA CONEXPO AFRICA Moves to Three-Year Cycle After 2015 Bauma Africa Connexpo Agg

After celebrating its premiere event in 2013, Africa’s largest trade fair for the construction machinery and mining industry is making some changes. The next BAUMA CONEXPO AFRICA takes place Sept. 15-18, 2015 at the Johannesburg Expo Center in Johannesburg, South Africa, but after that, the event is moving to a three-year cycle — meaning the next fair will be held in 2018.

This decision was made after close consultation with local and international industry representatives who recommended the three-year cycle for the markets of Africa.

We made this strategic decision based on the many discussions we have held since the extremely successful premiere. The three-year cycle clearly positions BAUMA CONEXPO AFRICA as the leading trade fair in Africa for the global construction and mining industry,” said Elaine Crewe, CEO of BC Expo South Africa.

Lawrence Peters, Chairman of CONMESA (Construction and Mining Equipment Suppliers' Association), is also pleased by the news: As a local partner, we are pleased that the discussions were so productive and that the organizers of BAUMA CONEXPO AFRICA decided to change the frequency of future events. The three-year interval suits the region because it depicts the market more accurately. It also gives local and international companies additional time to ensure that they are sufficiently prepared for the intense business activity at this event.

Additional information is available at www.bcafrica.com.

Source: Trenchless Online

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http://the-helmet.com/news/General/2014/08/30/BAUMA_CONEXPO_AFRICA_Moves_to_Three-Year_Cycle_After_2015 Sat, 30 Aug 2014 17:07:50 -0500
http://the-helmet.com/news/Company_Watch/2014/08/30/Kenya:_BASF_inaugurates_concrete_admixture_production_plant Kenya: BASF inaugurates concrete admixture production plant (From left) Laurent Tainturier, BASF Senior Vice President CIS, Middle East and Africa; Ambassador Amina Mohamed, Kenya’s Cabinet Secretary of Foreign Affairs and International Trade; Dick Purchase, Head of BASF’s Regional Business Unit Construction Chemicals Middle East, West Asia, CIS and Africa.

BASF has inaugurated a new concrete admixtures production plant in Nairobi, Kenya. The facility will enable the company to meet the rising demand for construction chemicals in Eastern Africa.

The plant is located in the Mlolongo area of Greater Nairobi, with good access to the road network and the Mombasa Port. It will deliver to customers within Kenya, as well as to neighbouring countries such as South Sudan, Uganda, Rwanda and Tanzania.

“We are now able to rapidly supply our customers with admixtures for all cement and aggregate types, whether their construction projects are located in the urban areas of Eastern Africa or in more remote sites,” commented Dick Purchase, Head of BASF’s Regional Business Unit Construction Chemicals Middle East, West Asia, CIS and Africa.
BASF will manufacture standard and custom-made performance admixtures from the MasterRheobuild® and MasterGlenium® product line at the site. The admixtures help to increase concrete strength and workability retention. The latter is of particular relevance for urban areas such as Nairobi or Kampala, Uganda, where heavy traffic may cause transportation of the concrete to the construction site to take longer.

BASF hopes that the solutions produced at the new plant will also benefit contractors in Eastern Africa, who may already be aware of the product portfolio and technologies.

“Not only will BASF now be able to further contribute to the building of sustainable structures in Eastern Africa, it will also bring employment opportunities and expertise to the region’s construction sector,” said Kenya’s Cabinet Secretary of Foreign Affairs and International Trade, Ambassador Amina Mohamed, at the opening ceremony.

BASF’s construction chemicals have been sold on the East African market for over 25 years. The company’s other production facilities in Africa include: Westonaria, South Africa; Algiers, Algeria; Sadat City, Egypt; Casablanca, Morocco.

“Growth in emerging markets is an integral component of BASF’s ‘We create chemistry’ strategy,” noted Laurent Tainturier, Senior Vice President CIS, Middle East and Africa at BASF. “In line with this, BASF’s Africa strategy aims to double sales on the continent by the year 2020. The new production facility will strengthen the product portfolio in the region, and will meet the demands for multi-story buildings, long-lasting infrastructural constructions and more energy efficiency in construction techniques.”


Adapted from press release by Louise Fordham

 

Source: World Cement

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http://the-helmet.com/news/Company_Watch/2014/08/30/Kenya:_BASF_inaugurates_concrete_admixture_production_plant Sat, 30 Aug 2014 16:49:58 -0500
http://the-helmet.com/news/Energy/2014/08/28/Ghana:_200_MW_thermal_power_plant_to_be_constructed_in_Prampram Ghana: 200 MW thermal power plant to be constructed in Prampram Power  Transmission Lines

Santerre Limited has entered into an agreement to finance and develop a 200MW combined-cycle thermal power plant in the Republic of Ghana as an independent power producer (IPP). Construction of the plant is expected to begin in 2015.

The new power plant will be constructed in the coastal town of Prampram, close to the industrial hub of Tema -- a major port city in West Africa -- near the new 330 kV Ghana Grid Company transmission line, the West African Gas Pipeline and the Tema Oil Refinery. The plant will be built on a fast-track basis to help alleviate the ongoing power cuts and load management in Ghana. The total investment cost of the project is expected to be about US$150million dollars.

 

The Project

The project is being developed in two phases of 100 MW each through the company's Ghanaian subsidiary Santerre Electric Power Company Limited (SEPCO), which has signed a Memorandum of Understanding with the state-owned Electricity Company of Ghana (ECG).

“This project will demonstrate the maturity of thermal power technology, which can be efficiently harnessed to tackle Ghana's recurrent electric power shortages. A Land Transfer Agreement has been signed for the Project; and the project site is located close to a strategic industrial area less than 1km north of the sea," said SANTERRE President and CEO, Mr. Charles Hardeman.

"SANTERRE's track-record of developing major energy infrastructure projects will help to reduce Ghana's energy challenges. We are very grateful for the trust that has been placed in us by the Electricity Company of Ghana and the partners supporting us in this important project.”

Very significantly, "the construction, operation and maintenance of the plant will stimulate national socio-economic development and is expected to create about 1,000 jobs, as well as a supply chain that will foster economic growth," said Mr. Prince Kassim Alubankudi, SANTERRE's Country Representative in Ghana.

The 200MW power plant is being developed and sponsored in cooperation with experienced local partner companies: ACEC Investments Limited, the Ghanaian incorporated subsidiary of India-based ACEC that is led by the presidential award winning Colonel Raj Kalra (retired), an Engineer and former Indian Army Official; and Petro-Electric Company Ghana Limited, the Ghanaian firm that initiated and conceptualised the project.

SANTERRE Limited is a US-based international infrastructure development company with wide experience in privately financed infrastructure developments worldwide, including the first Public Private Partnership (PPP) power projects in Malaysia and Indonesia, respectively.


Source: ghanaweb.com

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http://the-helmet.com/news/Energy/2014/08/28/Ghana:_200_MW_thermal_power_plant_to_be_constructed_in_Prampram Thu, 28 Aug 2014 11:37:28 -0500
http://the-helmet.com/news/Mining/2014/08/28/Ghana:_Farming_affected_by_Mining_and_Teak_Plantations Ghana: Farming affected by Mining and Teak Plantations A Typical mining operation

Mrs Lillian Bruce, National Coordinator of Civil Society Coalition on Land (CICOL), has said mining and large scale teak plantations were affecting the environment.

In addition, she said, the plantations affected food production with competition for food nutrients in the soil.

Mrs Bruce said this when addressing chiefs, queen mothers, Customary Lands Secretariat Coordinators, land sector agencies, farmers and civil society groups in Sunyani.

The meeting attended by 40 participants was to assess the impact of the five-year World Bank and other donors sponsored Land Administration Project (LAP) on land reform.

It also assessed the knowledge of participants on land administration in the Region.

Mrs Bruce said if the trend continued posterity will not forgive the present generation and advised owners of teak plantations to review their operations in areas which are gradually turning into desert and not suitable for food production.

 

Her Appeal

She urged traditional rulers to contact the Lands Commission when approached by investors for the release of land for their operations.

Mr Anthony J.A. Gyamera, the Brong-Ahafo Regional Director of Town and Country Planning, called on traditional rulers to collaborate with the Lands Commission in the demarcation of land in order not to release lands haphazardly.

Illegal Mining in Ghana

He said release of large tracts of land to individuals or institutions to establish schools, agricultural and industrial activities should be discouraged since such acts affected land systems in the country.

Mr Gyamera said individuals and institutions after acquiring such large tract of land could not develop them and end up re-zoning them for sale to other people.

He said some traditional rulers had sold all their lands including sanitary sites for residential purposes for paltry sums.

Mr Gyamera appealed to the Metropolitan, Municipal and District Assemblies (MMDCs) to undertake the requisition of lands to ensure large tract of lands in the possession of individuals and institutions are re-demarcated and fairly distributed for useful purposes.

 

Source: GNA/BusinessGhana

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http://the-helmet.com/news/Mining/2014/08/28/Ghana:_Farming_affected_by_Mining_and_Teak_Plantations Thu, 28 Aug 2014 06:22:51 -0500
http://the-helmet.com/news/Civil_Works/2014/07/10/Ghana:_Dangote_invests_USD_35m_in_cement_production Ghana: Dangote invests USD 35m in cement production Alinko Dangote

The Dangote Cement Ghana Limited, producers of Dangote Cement, has commenced an expansion project worth US$35 million to help address the incidence of shortages of cement in the country.

The expansion project being established at Takoradi and the company’s current plant at Tema will be completed in the next 14 months and three months, respectively.

The Tema project has already begun while the Takoradi project is still at the foundation stage. When completed, the company says its annual production will be increased to about three million tonnes.

The expansion of Dangote plant in Ghana comes in the wake of rising cement prices, which is currently selling at GH¢32 for a bag in Accra and GH¢35 in other regions of the country. This is attributed to the falling cedi and rising input cost.

Press Conference

At a press conference last Thursday in Accra, the Vice-Chairman of the company, Mr Tajudeen A. Sijuade, said the project had been necessitated by the demand on the Ghanaian market.

According to him, for the past five years that the company had been operating in the country, the major concern had been the lack of sufficient supply of the products to meet the growing needs of the construction industry, hence the decision to expand.

“By the time we finish this, there will be no shortage of cement in Ghana, and this is to give you the assurance that we are here to stay,” he said.

Employment

The expansion, he said, would increase the current 500 employment opportunity at the Tema Plant to about 1,000, while Takoradi would provide about 1,200 direct and indirect employments to Ghanaians.

Mr Sijuade said the company’s vision was to reach about three million customers within the next three years and stated that the company was working hard to achieve that.

Dangote will not compromise on quality

He gave the assurance that the company would not compromise on quality in its attempts to meet the demand of the Ghanaian market. The Sales and Marketing Manager, Mr Joseph Kobina Aboo, said Dangote Cement had been known for its quality over the years across Africa and as such the company would continue to ensure customer satisfaction.

 

Source: Daily Graphic

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http://the-helmet.com/news/Civil_Works/2014/07/10/Ghana:_Dangote_invests_USD_35m_in_cement_production Thu, 10 Jul 2014 08:49:45 -0500
http://the-helmet.com/news/Civil_Works/2014/07/10/Ghana:_Work_Begins_On_New_Cement_Plant Ghana: Work Begins On New Cement Plant President John Mahama

President John Dramani Mahama on Wednesday cut the sod for the construction of a 60-million euro cement plant in Tema.

It will produce one million tonnes of cement in a year.

Located in the Free Zones enclave, the project is being executed by Cimaf Ciments de L'Afrique, a subsidiary of the Addoha Group of Morocco.

Construction work will take 18 months to complete.

Speaking at the ceremony, President Mahama expressed the hope that the completion of the project would help stabilise the price of the product on the market.

He touched on the current price hike in cement and said the situation had links with rumours of an impending shortage of the product.

He dispelled the rumors, saying the five cement plants in the country were operating and so there should be no panic buying.

The President said the investment by the Addoha Group was symbolic of the bond of friendship between Morocco and Ghana.

He stated that in spite of the economic challenges facing Ghana, the country remained the most successful investment destination in West Africa.

Recognising the boom in the construction industry, he said it was the result of the economic growth of the country which currently stood at seven per cent per annum.

He also touched on the housing deficit and said the coming of Addoha would help address the challenge.

The establishment of the cement plants — the first Moroccan industrial investment in Ghana — is the first phase of a long-term investment drive by the Moroccan group.

Addoha has signed a memorandum of understanding (MoU) with the government for the construction of 10,000 social housing units over seven years, totaling about 250 million euros.

It will also construct schools, clinics, playing fields, places of worship, among other projects, in the long term.

The cement project will give direct and indirect jobs to 1,200 people.
Addoha, a leader in the social housing sector in Africa, has a turnover of one billion euros.

The project is part of the developer’s objective to partner the Ghana government to provide low-priced social housing for the people.

The Chairman of Cimaf, Mr Anas Sefrioui, said the King of Morocco believed in South-South cooperation, with Ghana remaining a partner in that respect.

He said the cement plant would be managed by Ghanaian expertise.

The Minister of Trade and Industry, Mr Haruna Iddrissu, accused manufacturers and retailers in the cement industry of colluding to hike the price of the product.

He said the government would soon come up with a " competition law" to help introduce sanity into the pricing of cement, among other items.


SOURCE: Daily Graphic

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http://the-helmet.com/news/Civil_Works/2014/07/10/Ghana:_Work_Begins_On_New_Cement_Plant Thu, 10 Jul 2014 08:32:11 -0500