Supporting the Policy Environment for Economic Development


Global focus on infrastructure and the need for Common Approach to Infrastructural Development mechanisms in African countries

William Mwanza, tralac Researcher, discusses the emerging global consensus on the need for enhanced investment in infrastructure

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EAC “trade wars” demonstrate importance of market integration agenda for regional industrial development

William Mwanza, tralac Researcher, discusses the ongoing “trade wars” amongst East African Community (EAC) member states

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Is it possible to have better governance in the RECs?

Gerhard Erasmus, tralac Associate, discusses five ways in which the implementation of regional legal instruments can be enhanced

Regional integration in Africa is necessary because our nations cannot prosper in isolation. The challenges posed by small domestic markets, limited economies of scale and the marginal position of Africa in global trade call for coordinated and effective responses from Members. That is why numerous regional agreements have been concluded; to provide legal frameworks to steer national administrations towards joint and firm action.

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What legal format for the Continental FTA?


At its 25th Extraordinary Summit held in Johannesburg in June 2015 the Heads of State and Government of the African Union launched the Continental Free Trade Area (CFTA) negotiations. This Summit adopted the Objectives and Guiding Principles for Negotiating the Continental Free Trade Area.[1]

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The economic consequences of load shedding in South Africa and the state of the electrical grid

Perhaps one of the most pressing challenges facing the South African economy in 2015 is maintaining the structural integrity of its electricity generation network. The power system has come under severe strain due to maintenance backlogs and a failure to bring new generating capacity timeously online to match economic and social development. This has led to electricity demand at times outstripping supply. Consequently, this had led to the national parastatal supplier of electricity Eskom implementing load shedding. This involves planned rolling blackouts on a rotating schedule throughout the country to avoid total power system failure. If the system had to collapse, it would take weeks for the system to get back to supplying electricity to the grid. This in itself would be catastrophic for the country and result in hundreds of billions of rands of loss in economic activity.

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Exploring the Relationship Between Energy Access and Gender-Based Violence

More than one in three women have experienced violence — that is 700 million women.

USAID is part of the international community for the global campaign, 16 Days of Activism against Gender-Based Violence. The international campaign originated from the first Women’s Global Leadership Institute coordinated by the Center for Women’s Global Leadership in 1991.

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A Beneficiação não é gratuita!

Pesquisas recentes argumentam que os recursos de gás e carvão de Moçambique criam uma vantagem competitiva em produtos que são grandes consumidores de energia, abrindo uma fonte completamente nova de produção e de exportações (Standard Bank 2014). Em consequência, propõe-se que a beneficiação deslocada a jusante para o processamento destes recursos, para promover maior valor acrescentado, oferece um caminho óbvio para a transformação estrutural e a industrialização. Além disso, reitera-se que estes investimentos de beneficiação iriam actuar para contrabalançar quaisquer efeitos negativos da Doença Holandesa que poderiam surgir devido à explosão das exportações de recursos naturais.

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Benefication Is Not A Free Lunch!

Recent research argues that Mozambique’s gas and coal resources create a competitive advantage in energy-intensive products, opening up a completely new source of production and exports (Standard Bank 2014).  As a consequence, it is proposed that benefication, moving downstream into processing of these resources to promote greater value added, offers an obvious path to structural transformation and industrialization.  Further, it is maintained that these benefication investments would act to counter-balance any negative Dutch Disease effects that might arise because of booming natural resource exports.

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Energy Situation in Southern Africa

Brian Mureverwi, a tralac Intern, comments on the current energy crisis in southern Africa

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