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0930-1500 KENYA TIME
Normal Board - The Whole shebang
Prompt Board Next day settlement
Expert Board All you need re an Individual stock.
The Latest Daily PodCast can be found here on the Front Page of the site
#Mindspeak this Sunday from 0900 at the Movenpick with @hofrench
Howard Waring French (born October 14, 1957) is an American journalist, author, and photographer, as well as professor at the Columbia University Graduate School of Journalism.
His latest book is Everything Under the Heavens: How the Past Helps
Shape China's Push for Global Power (Knopf, March 2017).
His most recent work for The New York Times was centered on China
where he was the paper's Shanghai bureau chief, from 2003 to 2008.
French was New York Times bureau chief for the Caribbean and Central
America from 1990 to 1994; he covered Haiti, Cuba, Nicaragua, El
Salvador, and numerous other countries.
He was one of the newspaper's first black correspondents.
From 1994 to 1998, French covered West and Central Africa for the
Times, reporting on wars in Liberia, Sierra Leone and Central Africa,
with particular attention to the fall of the longtime dictator of
Zaire Mobutu Sese Seko.
From 1998 to 2003, French was Tokyo Bureau Chief for the Times,
covering Japan and the Koreas.
In addition to his native English, French speaks Mandarin, French, and
Portuguese. He became Tokyo bureau chief for the Times in 1999,
after a year studying Japanese at the University of Hawaii in Manoa.
He has written for The New York Review of Books and also contributed
frequently to The Atlantic and to "The Guardian Longreads".
A Continent for the Taking: The Tragedy and Hope of Africa By Howard French Knopf, $25.00
Early in his rambles through West Africa as a correspondent for The
New York Times, Howard French arrived in Lagos, the steamy financial
capital of Nigeria. The most populous nation in Africa had just been
taken over by Gen. Sani Abacha, a sinister figure who concealed his
eyes behind dark sunglasses and who had a predilection for ordering"
Mafia-style hits against political opponents. Nigeria's promise had
long since been frittered away by a succession of corrupt military
dictators and civilian rulers, but under Abacha, who seized power in
1993, the thievery had become ever more brazen. Within minutes of his
arrival, French was set upon by both a rapacious immigration official
and a soldier who demanded his passport and threatened him with
arrest. Then the reporter's Nigerian "fixer," David, stepped in,
rebuking the assailants and holding firm even as the soldier raised
his gun. As the soldier beat a retreat, David offered French some
cogent counsel. "You must never fear those people," he says. "If you
do, you are finished."
It is a piece of advice that French had repeatedly to fall back on in
the course of his four years as the Timed roving bureau chief based in
Abidjan, Cote d'Ivoire. A Continent for the Taking: The Traged and
Hope of Africa, his vivid, disquieting memoir of those times, conjures
up a succession of flailed states in which the shakedown is a way of
life, destitute soldiers terrorize civilians at will, and the
slightest display of weakness becomes an invitation for predation. In
chapter after evocative chapter, he chronicles the murderous
kleptocracy of Abacha in Nigeria, the outbreak of the deadly Ebola
virus in Zaire (now the Democratic Republic of Congo), the
drug-and-diamond-fueled carnage in Liberia, and the epic fall of
Zairian dictator Mobutu. It's depressing, Hobbesian stuff. Yet in
sharp contrast to Out of America, Keith Richburg's bitingly
pessimistic account of his years as an African- American correspondent
covering the Rwandan genocide and clan warfare in Somalia, French,
also an African American, sees Africa as a continent still dense with
possibility. The tug of war between ordinary citizens yearning for
democracy and ruthless leaders determined to squelch those aspirations
is one of the driving themes behind French's book. So, too, is the
often-destructive role played by the United States, which, as lie
documents, propped up the worst of these dictators and demagogues,
then often stood by as their nations disintegrated around them.
12-SEP-2016 :: Mirrors on the ceiling, The pink champagne on ice
If volatility spikes, positions are going to be reduced en masse. Or
to put it another way and to borrow the lyrics from the Eagles Hotel
Mirrors on the ceiling,
The pink champagne on ice
And she said “We are all just prisoners here, of our own device” Last
thing I remember, I was
Running for the door
I had to find the passage back
To the place I was before
“Relax,” said the night man,
“We are programmed to receive.
You can check-out any time you like,
But you can never leave! “
What is clear is that we are at the fag-end of this party.
It took a long time to unwind but unwind it will
Creative destruction (German: schöpferische Zerstörung), sometimes
known as Schumpeter's gale, is a concept in economics which since the
1950s has become most readily identified with the Austrian economist
According to Schumpeter, the "gale of creative destruction" describes
the "process of industrial mutation that incessantly revolutionizes
the economic structure from within, incessantly destroying the old
one, incessantly creating a new one".
Schumpeter introduced the term "creative destruction", which he
explicitly derived from Marxist thought (analysed extensively in Part
I of the book) and used it to describe the disruptive process of
transformation that accompanies such innovation:
Capitalism [...] is by nature a form or method of economic change and
not only never is but never can be stationary. [...] The fundamental
impulse that sets and keeps the capitalist engine in motion comes from
the new consumers’ goods, the new methods of production or
transportation, the new markets, the new forms of industrial
organization that capitalist enterprise creates.
[...] The opening up of new markets, foreign or domestic, and the
organizational development from the craft shop and factory to such
concerns as U.S. Steel illustrate the process of industrial mutation
that incessantly revolutionizes the economic structure from within,
incessantly destroying the old one, incessantly creating a new one.
This process of Creative Destruction is the essential fact about
capitalism. It is what capitalism consists in and what every
capitalist concern has got to live in.
Companies that once revolutionized and dominated new industries – for
example, Xerox in copiers or Polaroid in instant photography –
have seen their profits fall and their dominance vanish as rivals
launched improved designs or cut manufacturing costs. In technology,
the cassette tape replaced the 8-track, only to be replaced in turn by
the compact disc, which was undercut by downloads to MP3 players,
which is now being usurped by web-based streaming services.
Companies which made money out of technology which becomes obsolete do
not necessarily adapt well to the business environment created by the
15-APR-2019 :: The Platform Economy
Gladwellian level move. “The tipping point is that magic moment when
an idea, trend, or social behaviour crosses a threshold, tips, and
spreads like wildfire”- Malcolm Gladwell. The new high tech,
millenial, crypto, avocado economy exhibits viral, wildfire and
exponential and even non-linear characteristics not unlike Ebola.
The Waste Land TS Eliot
FOR EZRA POUND
IL MIGLIOR FABBRO
I. The Burial of the Dead
April is the cruellest month, breeding
Lilacs out of the dead land, mixing
Memory and desire, stirring
Dull roots with spring rain.
Winter kept us warm, covering
Earth in forgetful snow, feeding
A little life with dried tubers.
Summer surprised us, coming over the Starnbergersee
With a shower of rain; we stopped in the colonnade,
And went on in sunlight, into the Hofgarten,
And drank coffee, and talked for an hour.
I will show you fear in a handful of dust.
Frisch weht der Wind
Der Heimat zu
Mein Irisch Kind,
Wo weilest du?
“You gave me hyacinths first a year ago;
“They called me the hyacinth girl.”
—Yet when we came back, late, from the Hyacinth garden,
Your arms full, and your hair wet, I could not
Speak, and my eyes failed, I was neither
Living nor dead, and I knew nothing,
Looking into the heart of light, the silence.
Oed’ und leer das Meer.
Madame Sosostris, famous clairvoyante,
Had a bad cold, nevertheless
Is known to be the wisest woman in Europe,
With a wicked pack of cards. Here, said she,
Is your card, the drowned Phoenician Sailor,
(Those are pearls that were his eyes. Look!)
Here is Belladonna, the Lady of the Rocks,
The lady of situations.
I think we are in rats’ alley
Where the dead men lost their bones.
“What is that noise?”
The wind under the door.
“What is that noise now? What is the wind doing?”
Nothing again nothing.
“You know nothing? Do you see nothing? Do you remember
I sat upon the shore
Fishing, with the arid plain behind me
Shall I at least set my lands in order?
London Bridge is falling down falling down falling down
Poi s’ascose nel foco che gli affina
Quando fiam uti chelidon—O swallow swallow
Le Prince d’Aquitaine à la tour abolie
These fragments I have shored against my ruins
Why then Ile fit you. Hieronymo’s mad againe.
Datta. Dayadhvam. Damyata.
Shantih shantih shantih
India election: @narendramodi poised for historic landslide, early results suggest @guardian
Law & Politics
Modi’s ruling Bharatiya Janata party (BJP) had been expected to easily
win a majority in coalition with smaller parties, but official results
after nearly three hours of counting showed the party ahead in at
least 290 seats, enough to claim an outright victory. Its main
national opponent, Congress, was leading in just over 50 seats.
“Together we grow,” Modi said on Twitter as the results came in.
“Together we prosper. Together we will build a strong and inclusive
India. India wins yet again!”
India’s markets reacted euphorically to Modi’s commanding lead, with
the benchmark Sensex reaching a record high.
Tories expect @theresa_may to be gone within days @FT
Law & Politics
Conservative MPs expect Theresa May to resign or be forced out of
office within days, as the cabinet turned on the prime minister and
support evaporated for her latest Brexit proposals.
In a fresh blow to Mrs May’s fragile leadership, Andrea Leadsom,
leader of the House of Commons and a prominent Leave campaigner,
resigned from the government on Wednesday evening saying she could no
longer accept Mrs May’s Brexit deal.
With her party facing a wipeout in Thursday’s poll — some opinion
surveys put the Conservatives in fifth place — Mrs May is under huge
pressure to resign or face a putsch by backbench Tory MPs.
Mrs May refused to meet home secretary Sajid Javid, foreign secretary
Jeremy Hunt and Scotland secretary David Mundell on Wednesday as she
gathered her inner team for fraught discussions on whether she should
The three ministers were expected to ask her to remove the prospect of
a second Brexit referendum from the withdrawal agreement bill.
“She’s not playing by the rules any more. It is incredible how she
just avoided the cabinet acting against her by just not meeting them,”
said one senior Tory.
But Mrs May told the Commons it was her “duty” to try to persuade MPs
to back the bill, claiming that if her deal was defeated for a fourth
time there was a danger Brexit would not happen. She admitted that her
time in office was almost over.
“In time, another prime minister will be standing at this despatch
box,” she said. “But while I am here I have a duty to be clear with
the House about the facts. If we are going to deliver Brexit in this
parliament we are going to have to pass a withdrawal agreement bill.”
The executive of the 1922 committee of backbench Conservatives MPs met
twice on Wednesday, but ultimately decided against suspending the
party’s rule book to allow an immediate challenge to Mrs May’s
The committee decided in principle to change the rules if Mrs May had
not resigned by mid-June, according to one Tory grandee.
Graham Brady, chair of the committee, said he would meet Mrs May on
Friday following the European elections. Further consultations will
then take place with senior MPs.
“Brady will meet the prime minister. We’re hoping she will resign
before then — and if not, we’ll have no choice left but to consider
changing the rules,” said a member of the 1922 executive.
Ben Bradley, a Eurosceptic Tory MP, said: “One way or the other I
think this is inevitably the end for the prime minister, delayed only
by the European election . . .
“As far as I can see the mood is almost unanimously that there is no
point bringing this deal forward and she should go this week.”
Some Conservative MPs expressed their frustration that Mrs May had not
resigned on Wednesday.
Iain Duncan Smith, former Tory leader, said: “The sofa is up against
the door, she’s not leaving.”
Another Conservative said: “The can has been kicked down the road again.”
Steve Baker, a leading Eurosceptic Tory who has called for Mrs May to
resign, said: “People are rather impatient. But equally I think most
colleagues appreciate this is a very difficult time for everybody on
the  executive and this is after all the eve of the poll in a
Full-Blown Trade War Is Quickly Shifting From Risk to 'Baseline' @Economics.
Law & Politics
Goldman Sachs Group Inc., Nomura Holdings Inc. and JPMorgan Chase and
Co. are among those that have rewritten their forecasts as U.S.
President Donald Trump threatens to impose a 25% tariffs on around
$300 billion of additional Chinese imports.
Analysts at Nomura have made that hike in duties -- which would mean
practically all of China’s exports to the U.S. are hit by tariff hikes
-- their baseline forecast. They see it as a 65% probability before
year-end, and most likely to come in the third quarter.
“The U.S.-China relationship has moved further off track over the past
two weeks after a period of what appeared, on the surface, to be
steady progress towards reaching an admittedly narrow agreement,”
Nomura economists wrote in a note.
“We do not think the two sides will be able to get back to where they
seemed to be in late April.”
Steve Bannon says killing @Huawei more important than trade deal with China @SCMPNews
Driving Huawei out of the United States and Europe is “10 times more
important” than a trade deal with China, according to former White
House chief strategist Steve Bannon.
He also said he would dedicate all his time to shutting Chinese
companies out of US capital markets.
The remark by Bannon, a strong advocate of an “all-encompassing war”
against China, came days after US President Donald Trump signed an
executive order effectively banning Huawei from the US market and
cutting off its vital components supply.
Sudan's Uprising, Bashir's Fall, and My Father's Passing @NewYorker's Isma'il Kushkush
In 1964, my father participated in the October Revolution protests,
which unseated Sudan’s first military dictator, Ibrahim Abbud.
My father belonged to a generation that had big dreams of progress—the
“generation of giving,” as one Sudanese poet called it.
In 1980, having completed a Ph.D. in ecology at the University of
California, Davis, he returned to Sudan with high hopes for the
Within a year, the political and economic realities of the
time—dictatorship, inflation, and unemployment—forced my father and
many of his peers to reluctantly leave again and live abroad, as
The protests first started in Atbara, a town in northeastern Sudan
where he had lived as a child, and where my grandfather had worked as
a railroad-station manager.
High-school students took to the streets after the price of bread
Protests quickly spread across the country, peaking on April 6, 2019,
in Khartoum, on the anniversary of the April 6, 1985, uprising that
unseated another dictator, General Jaafar Nimeiri.
I remember my father listening day and night to radio news broadcasts
of the 1985 uprising from Kuwait, where we lived at the time.
In the sixty-three years since Sudan achieved independence from
Britain and Egypt, the country has fluctuated between civilian rule
and military dictatorship; it has endured civil war, drought, and
Many Sudanese people, particularly in the middle class, believe that
the country was in a better place during the early years of
They reminisce about the superior quality of the colonial-era
educational system, trains that ran on time, and a national soccer
team that dominated Africa.
Bashir’s reign for the past thirty years has been particularly harsh,
with the decline of the civil service, allegations of genocide in
Darfur, and the secession of South Sudan, after twenty-two years of
At the core of Sudan’s instability has been its lack of a permanent
constitution and disputes about whether the country should be a
liberal democracy or a socialist or Islamist state, and whether Sudan
is Arab, African, or both.
Like many Sudanese people of my generation, while I was growing up, I
was inundated with stories from my parents about what Sudan was and
complaints about what it has become.
When the Sudanese took to the streets in December, it was a moment for
many of us to restore our trampled-upon sense of dignity, our pride in
what Sudan once was and what it could become.
I had argued with my father that Sudan had always, in fact, faced
challenges, including deep prejudice and, as a result, staggering
economic inequality between its major cities and its peripheral
It is still early to determine where Sudan is headed. Many Sudanese
fear a “deep state” of military and intelligence officials that will
refuse to relinquish power or the interference of powerful countries
in the region.
Protesters are demanding an immediate transition to civilian rule, to
avoid the mistakes of Sudan’s past and those of the Arab Spring.
I’ve been reluctant to use the word “revolution,” but the qualitative
differences and revolutionary nature of the current uprising should
not be ignored.
Youth, women, and minorities all played a leading role in the protests.
The Sudanese people have displayed a rejuvenated sense of civic duty.
Frank discussions about the country’s problems have revealed a
sweeping commitment to change.
Perhaps this generation will finally bring about, and add to, the
dreams of that “giving generation,” creating a Sudan that will bring
its people and my father peace.
What’s clear is that a very young, very informed and very connected
African youth demographic [many characterise this as a ‘demographic
dividend’] – which for Beautiful Blaise turned into a demographic
terminator – is set to alter the existing equilibrium between the
rulers and the subjects, and a re-balancing has begun. We need to ask
ourselves; how many people can incumbent shoot stone cold dead in such
a situation – 100, 1,000, 10,000? This is another point: there is a
threshold beyond which the incumbent can’t go. Where that threshold
lies will be discovered in the throes of the event. Therefore, the
preeminent point to note is that protests in Burkina Faso achieved
escape velocity. Overthrowing incumbents is all about acceleration,
momentum and speed best characterised by the German word ‘Blitzkrieg’.
To Borrow $500 Million, Zimbabwe Pledges Mine That Doesn't Exist BBG
The collateral for African Export-Import Bank’s $500 million loan to
Zimbabwe is a mine that hasn’t been dug yet, people familiar with the
The loan, which will be paid over four years when production starts,
is backed by a mine that Great Dyke Investments, a venture between
Russian investors and the Zimbabwean military, plans to build at a
cost of $4 billion, the people said.
The mine, for which Afreximbank is arranging funding, is struggling to
attract financiers because of the interest held by the military’s
Zimbabwe Defense Industries Ltd.
Short of foreign currency, fuel and medicine and battling the highest
inflation since 2008, Zimbabwe is mortgaging its mineral wealth in
exchange for foreign currency.
Lines of credit from Afreximbank were secured using gold exports as
collateral, Zimbabwe’s Financial Gazette reported in February, citing
Reserve Bank of Zimbabwe Governor John Mangudya.
Zimbabwe secured the $500 million loan, the origin and terms of which
were not disclosed, after businesses complained that the interbank
currency market instituted in February wasn’t functional because there
weren’t enough dollars to meet their needs.
The RTGS$, a quasi-currency that isn’t traded outside Zimbabwe, is
exchanged on the market. The government abandoned its own currency.
the Zimbabwe dollar, in 2009 after a bout of hyperinflation.
George Guvamatanga, the permanent secretary in the finance ministry,
said he couldn’t comment, citing confidentiality agreements.
Afreximbank didn’t immediately respond to a request for comment.
Afreximbank, which is based in Cairo and is partially owned by African
governments, has lent to Zimbabwe before. In addition to the
gold-backed loan it extended a $600 million line of credit to the
country in 2017.
While the country is mired in an economic crisis, it has the world’s
third-biggest platinum group metals deposits and abundant reserves of
gold, iron ore, diamonds and lithium. It also has some of the most
developed infrastructure in Africa and one of the region’s best
educated work forces.
The structure of the deal was decided earlier this month at a meeting
attended by officials from Zimbabwe’s treasury, central bank, mines
ministry, Afreximbank, and Great Dyke Investments chairwoman, Hespinah
Rukato, the people said. The mine could produce about 800,000 ounces
of platinum group metals a year if built.
The Bank of Zambia raised the rate to 10.25% from 9.75%, Governor Denny Kalyalya told reporters Wednesday in Lusak @business
While the southern Africa nation’s annual inflation rate of 7.7% in
April is within the central bank’s target range of 6% to 8%, effects
from the kwacha’s 13% slide against the dollar this year could push it
beyond that range.
The increase in borrowing costs could help support the currency.
The inflation rate will probably remain above the target band for the
next eight quarters, Kalyalya said.
Food prices could rise further after Zambia’s harvest of corn, a
staple, fell to an estimated 2 million metric tons this year, the
lowest in a decade.
“An upward adjustment will certainly hurt the real economy,” Chibamba
Kanyama, a Lusaka-based economist, said by email before the decision.
“We are, however, better off hurting the economy via high policy rate
than waiting for inflationary pressure to frustrate long-term
Drought Forces Zambia to Start Power Cuts @economics
“In view of the power deficit, Zesco Ltd. intends to commence load
management to restrict supply,” the company said in a notice dated May
It didn’t provide details as to how severe the shortage is, and will
meet stakeholders from Wednesday to brief them on the deficit,
according to the notice.
The electricity shortage will deal another blow to the economy of
Africa’s second-biggest copper producer that’s already forecast to
expand at the slowest pace in 21 years in 2019.
Zambia is grappling with a mounting debt burden, a currency that’s the
world’s second-worst performer this year, and tensions with the mining
sector it relies on for more than 70% of its foreign exchange
Copper producers including Vedanta Resources Ltd. and First Quantum
Minerals Ltd. use more than half of Zambia’s electricity supply.
Water levels at the Kariba hydropower dam that straddles Zambia and
Zimbabwe receded to 32% by May 20.
At the same time last year, it was 77% full and still rising.
Flows of the Zambezi river that feeds it are less than a quarter of
what they were a year ago, and comparable to those in 1995-96, which
were the lowest in 50 years of records, according to data from the two
Tanzania's China-backed $10 billion port plan stalls over terms: official @ReutersAfrica
A planned $10 billion port project in Tanzania backed by China has hit
an impasse, with the two sides disagreeing on terms of the
infrastructure investment, a senior Tanzanian port official said on
In 2013, Tanzania signed a framework agreement with China Merchants
Holdings International, China’s largest port operator, to build the
port and a special economic zone that aims to transform the east
African country into a regional trade and transport hub.
“The conditions that they have given us are commercially unviable. We
said no, let’s meet halfway,” Deusdedit Kakoko, director general of
the state-run Tanzania Ports Authority (TPA) told Reuters.
“It would have been a loss ... they shouldn’t treat us like schoolkids
and act like our teachers.”
The Tanzanian government has officially written to the Chinese port
operator on the disputed terms, Kakoko said. “We are waiting for them
to begin new talks. When they are ready, we will resume the
China Merchants said in an e-mailed statement to Reuters that many
years of negotiations with the Tanzanian side had failed to result in
a legally binding agreement.
“This project is a purely commercial, investment project and China
Merchants Port has in its overseas investments always followed the
principles of commercial feasibility and win-win cooperation,” the
Chinese Foreign Ministry Lu Kang, speaking at a daily news briefing in
Beijing on Thursday, did not comment directly on the project, but
noted China does its best to cooperate with Africa on infrastructure
China looks at the viability of projects with their African partners
to ensure their sustainability, he added.
Since taking office in late 2015, Tanzanian President John Magufuli’s
government has sought to renegotiate major deals with foreign
investors in mining, natural gas, telecoms and infrastructure projects
as part of a new resource nationalism drive.
The deal for the Bagamoyo port was signed in 2013 by the government of
Magufuli’s predecessor, Jakaya Kikwete, during a visit of Chinese
President Xi Jinping to the country. It is also financially backed by
Oman’s State General Reserve Fund.
Members of parliament demanded explanation from the government last
week on delays in implementation of the project. A ground breaking
ceremony for the project was held in late 2015 but actual construction
of the port is yet to start.
The port, to be built in Bagamoyo, 75 km (47 miles) north of Dar es
Salaam, would dwarf neighboring Kenya’s port at Mombasa, east Africa’s
trade gateway some 300 km (180 miles) to the north, and include an
industrial zone and rail and road links to a region hoping to exploit
new oil and gas finds.
It is meant to ease congestion at the port in the commercial capital
Dar es Salaam and transform a depressed area into a trade and
manufacturing hub. Yet there are practical difficulties, not least
that Bagamoyo’s port, unlike Dar es Salaam’s, would most likely need
regular, extensive dredging.
KQ revives Sh1.5bn rights issue plan for small investors
Kenya Airways has revived plans to implement a rights issue by selling
new shares to small investors at a huge discount.
The transaction was earlier estimated to raise more than Sh1.5 billion.
The national carrier remained silent as the deadline for the cash call
was breached in March but now says it plans to proceed with the
“A rights issue was approved to be offered to the diluted existing
shareholders. Plans for the issue are currently ongoing,” KQ, as the
airline is known by its international code, says in its latest annual
The company’s retail investors were diluted 95 per cent besides their
number of shares being reduced by a factor of four as part of efforts
to rescue the airline from collapse.