President Zuma concludes his state visit to the Republic of Zambia

President Jacob Zuma has characterized the State Visit to the Republic of Zambia as a remarkable success as he had positive and fruitful official talks with his Zambian counterpart, His Excellency President Edgar Lungu in Lusaka.

The State Visit had provided a platform to both President Zuma and President Lungu to deliberate on various issues of mutual concern as well as to deepen and strengthen bilateral, political, economic and cultural relations between the two countries, underpinned by strong historical ties that date back from the years of the liberation struggle against apartheid and colonialism.

The most important highlight of the visit was the elevation of the structured bilateral mechanism between South Africa and Zambia from the Joint Commission for Cooperation to a complete Bi-National Commission (BNC) that will now be chaired by the two Heads of State.

“It was an important visit for South Africa as our aim was to review and strengthen the existing strong bilateral and economic relations between the two nations and we are all pleased with the outcomes of our talks,” said the President.

He added: “We have ensured that our structured bilateral mechanisms are operational and effective to lead us to the joint future we want.”

“Considering the strong historical and fraternal bonds that bind our sister Republics and Peoples, we have decided to elevate our structured Bilateral Mechanism from the current Joint Commission for Cooperation to a fully-fledged Bi-National Commission.

Distributed by APO on behalf of Republic of South Africa: The Presidency.

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Source:: President Zuma concludes his state visit to the Republic of Zambia

      

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Unemployment: Dangote Rice launches youth graduates rice farming project in Kogi

Unemployment: Dangote employs youth graduate for rice farming in Kogi.

A multi-million Naira Youth Farming Initiative that will engage teeming unemployed Nigerian graduates in rice farming has been launched by the Dangote Rice Limited (www.Dangote.com) in Kogi State.

This is even as the Company prepares to hit the market with One million metric tons of Dangote rice in 2018.

The Dangote Youth Rice Farm project, mainly an out-grower scheme for youths only was flagged off at the Lower Niger River Basin Authority, Kampe, Ejiba in Yagba West local government area of the state where youth have embarked on rice cultivation over 100 hectares of land.

The rice farm project, which was preceded by a special training for the youth farmers on the dynamics of the rice farming, will see the youths cultivating the rice paddy on a 100 hectares of land, which will then be bought over by the company for processing.

Under the scheme, the Dangote Rice Company provides the seedling, anti-pest-chemicals, and fertilizers while the Basing Authority provided the land for the young farmers.

The management of Dangote Rice led by the Group Executive Director, Mr. Devakumar Edwin flagged off the project while taking delivery of some rice paddy bags produced from the pilot project.

Mr. Edwin explained that the project is a new dimension to the efforts by the pan-African conglomerate, the Dangote Group, at ensuring food security and creating job opportunities in Nigeria especially for the youths saying this Initiative is in line with the vision and commitment of Dangote Industries Limited to create a new generation of agri-preneur that will revolutionize the Nigerian agricultural sector.

“We believe skill, knowledge, enabling environment, collaboration and linkages along the value chain are driving forces for economic empowerment and social development in line with the Federal Government policies. This project will address the skills gap in local rice production among unemployed youths by providing technical, organisational and financial requirements.”

He said it would also enhance domestic rice production to cover the large gap between demand and domestic production and to increase self-sufficiency of Nigeria and substitute imported rice by quality Nigerian rice brands.

Mr. Edwin disclosed that most modern rice mills in Nigeria presently operate at not more than 20% capacity utilization due mainly to lack of good quality paddy and that Dangote Rice aimed to change this situation developing and adapting out-grower schemes. According to him, the Dangote Rice Company plans to set up a 150,000 metric tons integrated rice mill and sale one million mt of parboiled rice by 2018.

The Dangote Group boss stated that the decision of the management to start the project was driven by two factors, one of which is the need for youth employment through empowerment to go into agriculture. “The youths are more vulnerable to crimes and other social vices when they have nothing to engage them and this in turn affect the nation negatively.

“The second factor is the need to strengthen the on-going efforts at producing rice for self-sufficiency so that we can save foreign exchange. By the time we will be doing one million metric tons of rice next year, no less than three million jobs would been created along the value chain.”

Mr. Edwin said the Kogi pilot project will cover four season of two years and will be launched in four other states soon.

In his own remark, the Managing Director of Dangote Rice, Mr. Robert Coleman urged the youth farmers to concentrate on the project and pay attention to details so that they would come out with good paddy yield.

He congratulated the farmers for the decision to partner with Dangote Rice noting that they have a solid source of livelihood for themselves and members of their families if they give their all for the success of the scheme.

The Coordinator of the youth farmers, Umar Etudaye thanked the management of Dangote Rice for believing in them and engaging them for the project. He promised that they would deliver on the mandate given to them on the project.

He stated that the scheme is a practical step towards nation building because it’s the youths, who constitute 40 per cent of the population, would build the nation and only the youths that are empowered and gainfully employed could do that.

Distributed by APO on behalf of Dangote Group.

Media Contact:
Francis Awowole-Browne
Francis.Awowole@Dangote.com
+234 806 630 4898

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Source:: Unemployment: Dangote Rice launches youth graduates rice farming project in Kogi

      

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Greenpeace ship arrives for the first time in Cameroon with a message for the protection of the Congo Basin forest

The Greenpeace ship –The Esperanza (www.Greenpeace.org), has docked at the port of Douala in Cameroon on the first leg of its tour in Central Africa. For four weeks, the Esperanza will sail through the waters of Cameroon, the Democratic Republic of Congo (DRC) and the Republic of Congo to engage with local communities and raise awareness on the importance of the Congo Basin forest. The tour has been named ‘Give the Congo Basin forest a chance’.

“By bringing our ship to Central Africa and in Cameroon for the first time, Greenpeace Africa seeks to emphasise its commitment to working with local communities and stakeholders in addressing issues of industrial agriculture and logging that have plagued the Congo Basin region for decades,” said Lindlyn Moma, Greenpeace Africa Programme Director.

The Congo Basin forest is the second largest rainforest in the world. More than 75 million people and a wide range of endangered species depend on it for survival. However, logging and exploitative agribusiness has often contributed to forest loss and land grabbing. This often means local and indigenous communities loss the customary rights to their lands to logging companies.

During the ship tour, local communities will undertake a range of activities to show their support for the protection of the Congo Basin forest. Greenpeace Africa will seek to amplify these voices locally and internationally. The voices of these communities will be heard in the form of traditional dances, forest fashion parade and a wish tree capturing wishes of communities for their forest. These wishes will be handed to world leaders meeting in Bonn- Germany during the CO 23 climate meeting. Open boats and guided tours of the ship will also be available to the public.

“We are excited about the opportunity to engage with Cameroonians on the issue of forest protection. Forest destruction is a major threat to the global environment which depends on the Congo Basin forest to regulate carbon compound in our atmosphere. It is imperative that collaboration between the states be reinforced to promote land use planning. We also must encourage ecotourism and community forestry to guarantee the protection of our forest for present and future generations” said Sylvie Djacbou, Greenpeace Africa Forest Campaigner.

For the next four weeks, Greenpeace’s Esperanza will host stakeholders in the region to increase the urgency required to deal with the current unsustainable approach to forest management. These activities will also help imbue a sense of pride and conservation in the youths of the region.

Distributed by APO on behalf of Greenpeace.

Media contacts:

-Sylvie Djacbou,
Forest Campaigner, Greenpeace Africa
Email: sylvie.djacbou@greenpeace.org
Phone: (237) 652233542

-Nchemty M. Ozongashu,
Forest Communications Officer.
Email: nmetimio@greenpeace.org
Phone: (237) 677345612

Source:: Greenpeace ship arrives for the first time in Cameroon with a message for the protection of the Congo Basin forest

      

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Global leader in online gaming selects Angonix, Africa’s third largest IXP

Angonix (www.Angonix.net), Angola’s largest Internet Exchange Point (IXP), today welcomed i3D.net as its first remote peering customer. i3D.net is a managed hosting provider specialising in online gaming that hosts tens of millions of players for game publishers on the Microsoft Xbox and Sony PlayStation networks. i3D.net joins 17 other companies at Angonix, Africa’s third largest IXP.

According to Darwin Da Costa, project manager at Angonix: “With the Remote Peering services from Angola Cables, online gamers in Angola will enjoy an improved gaming experience with a much reduced latency. It is the first phase as we look forward to eventually having i3D.net establish a local infrastructure in the country.”

$100 billion global market

This year, global revenues in the games market – including Massively Multiplayer Online (MMO) games that support thousands of players at a time playing over the Internet – will total $109 billion, a growth of 56% over the past five years (Newzoo: http://APO.af/R986b4). Accounting for the majority of the online gaming market, MMOs are expected to have a value of $27 Billion (USD) By 2025 (The Insight Partners).

Whether on smartphones, PCs or consoles, the growth of the global online gaming market is expected to consistently be above 10% until 2023 with the availability of better gaming infrastructure as one of the primary drivers propelling the growth prospects of this market (Technavio).

i3D.net CEO Stijn Koster adds, “i3D.net provides services to a variety of online video gaming publishers, aggregating a large number of games that can be played on our infrastructure. We are always working to bring content as close to the end user as technically possible and welcome the opportunity to partner with Angola Cables and the Angonix Internet Exchange Point. i3D.net continues to build a stronger presence in Africa as one of the few truly global providers with extensive local presence throughout the African continent.”

Online gaming growing in Africa

With year-on-year revenue growth of more than 25%, AMEA (Asia, Middle East and Africa) is a fast-growing region for online gaming. With more than 336 million gamers and an online population of over 585 million, it will see revenues of about USD 4.0 billion this year. Only three African countries are in the top-60 countries for online gaming revenues, but as infrastructures continue to improve, these rankings are expected to improve. Currently, South Africa is ranked number one on the continent (55th globally) with revenues of $120 million this year, followed by Algeria (ranked 57th globally) with revenues of $103 million and Morocco (ranked 59th globally) and revenues of $84 million in 2017.

Beyond Africa

Latin America will be the second fastest growing region in 2017, with a year-on year growth rate of +13.9%. The region’s 205.7 million gamers will spend a total of $4.4 billion this year, making up 4.1% of global revenues. The mobile segment is the largest revenue shareholder, up 34.6% year on year. This impressive growth is set to continue as revenues for smartphones and tablets increase toward 2020, driven by rapid growth of the mobile segment and increasing internet penetration. Over 80% of all LATAM gaming revenues are generated by the top five countries in the region, with Mexico taking the first spot with $1.4 billion in revenue and Brazil in second place with revenues of $1.3 billion.

Distributed by APO on behalf of Angola Cables.

Media Contacts:
Andrew Fletcher Cole
andrewc@atmosphere.co.za
+27 (0)79 483 3208

Emile Schouwstra, CCO
marketing@i3d.net

About Angonix
In operation since March 2015, Angonix (www.Angonix.net) is the third largest Internet Exchange Point (IXP) in Africa. Located in Luanda, Angola, it acts as a bridge between the continent and the rest of the world by providing a carrier-neutral Internet hub to interconnect global networks, network operators and content providers and other organisations with their own Autonomous System Number. For more information, visit https://www.Angonix.net.

About Angola Cables
Angola Cables, Angola Cables (www.AngolaCables.co.ao) is a multinational telecommunications company founded in 2009, which operates in the wholesale market and whose core business is the commercialisation of capacity in international circuits for voice and data through Submarine Cable Systems. SACS and the Monet cable system will interconnect three continents (South America, North America and Africa) as well as a Tier III data centre in Fortaleza to interconnect the cable systems. Angola Cables also runs Angonix, a neutral Internet Exchange Point located in Luanda, which interconnects global networks and content providers. Angola Cables also manages Angonap, a neutral data centre located in Luanda and the company’s traffic exchange point in Angola. For more information, visit http://www.AngolaCables.co.ao.

About i3D.net
i3D.net is a global performance hosting provider founded in 2004 and now operates 10,500 servers in 26 data centers worldwide. We provide 24/7 support and offer cloud servers, co-location, dedicated server hosting, game servers, web hosting and specialty solutions such as MPLS and IP Transit. i3D.net excels in the gaming niche market hosting tens of millions of players for game publishers on the Microsoft Xbox Live and Sony PlayStation Network.

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Source:: Global leader in online gaming selects Angonix, Africa’s third largest IXP

      

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