Inside Business Africa INSIDE BUSINESS AFRICA APRIL 2019 - Page 19

Agri-business reportedly blessed the scheme. If this story is true, or even if General Salah believed it to be, the army chief may have seen himself frozen out of Algeria's future and therefore made a pre-emptive strike. After eight years of turmoil in the Arab world, it is tempting to search for parallels. Egyptians see a repeat of what happened to them in 2011. The army shunted Hosni Mubarak out of power, the opposition fractured, and the regime later returned with a vengeance. These are imperfect analogies. After the revolution Egypt's politics became a negotiation between the army and the Muslim Brotherhood. There is certainly an Islamist current in Algerian politics, but there is no equivalent to the Brotherhood, a monolithic group with deep popular support and a vast network of cadres. What is clear, though, is that the demonstrators will not be satisfied with Mr Bouteflika's departure. After he quit, the private Ennahar channel aired footage of a middle-aged man wading into a crowd of protesters to shout praise for General Salah. "The army of liberation…freed the people," he said, likening it to when Algeria won independence from France. His audience was unmoved: "Down with the gang!" one man replied. From the start, the protesters have demanded the I N S I D E B U S I N E S S A F R I C A removal of not just the president, but the entire ruling clique. Activists are planning another rally for April 5th, as they have every Friday for nearly two months. But Algeria's opposition is disorganised and leaderless; and, with an election now looming, it has precious little time to organise and field candidates. Last month activists announced an umbrella group called the National Co-ordination for Change and called for free elections, social justice and civilian control of the army. Some members of the g roup immediately disavowed the platform. Liberal-minded members are uncomfortable sharing a stage with Islamists. Thankfully for them, le pouvoir looks increasingly disorganised as well. The clans who wielded power during Mr Bouteflika's long rule are now locked in a battle to survive. Intrigue and uncertainty do not detract from the enormity of what Algerians achieved. In less than two months their peaceful, popular protests dislodged a president who ruled almost unopposed for two decades. And they note, darkly, that the Arab spring gave them guidance on how not to proceed. Whether they can chart a happier course remains to be seen. SOURCE: THE ECONOMIST Taking on the big oil firm Vatican plans additional meeting with Big Oil to discuss climate change A s part of Pope Francis' campaign to counter climate change, the Vatican has extended a second invitation to major oil companies to participate in a discussion about their company's roles in generating and reducing pollution. Top executives from BP Plc and Eni SpA are among those invited to attend a two-day meeting from June 13, according to people familiar with the plan. The officials could meet the Pope on the second day, they said. 34 u t APRIL1 4 - 28, 2019 Maritime Report THE MAGAZINE 0F THE CORPORATE WORLD CEO's of ExxonMobil Corp., Eni and BP, along with asset manager BlackRock Inc.'s Larry Fink, attended a similar meeting last year, in which they agreed the world needed to transition to lower-carbon fuels while ensuring adequate supply. Since then, little progress has been made on some of the key points agreed at that meeting, such as carbon pricing. The Pope's spokesman declined to comment when asked about this year's meeting. The interest of Pope Francis, who has made climate change a cornerstone of his papacy, adds to the pressure companies are already facing on emissions. Royal Dutch Shell Plc gave in to demands from investors last year to set short-term climate targets, while BP has said it will disclose more information about the alignment of its business model with the Paris accord. ExxonMobil has successfully blocked a measure from investors on climate change. In its strategy update last month, Eni said it will plant 20 million acres of forest in Africa to help offset all carbon dioxide emissions from its oil and gas exploration and production operations by the end of the next decade. The Pope said in an encyclical letter in 2015 that the science around the topic is clear and that the Catholic Church should view it as a moral issue. The Vatican, which has diplomatic relations with over 180 countries and has permanent observer status at the United Nations, has also fervently backed the Paris climate agreement. it would be instructive for NIMASA and its affiliated agencies to provide clarity on the responsibilities of relevant parties in maritime emergency situations to prevent such an occurrence in the future. operation could proceed. This has led maritime law experts to c a l l f o r i n c r e a s e d a w a r e n e s s, preparedness and responsiveness by all parties concerned. Accordingly, it would be instructive for NIMASA and its affiliated agencies to provide clarity on the responsibilities of relevant parties in maritime emergency situations to prevent such an occurrence in the future. NIMASA, however, has revealed that it has entered the final stages of establishing a Search and Rescue Committee in collaboration with all oil majors, to cover Nigeria's entire maritime domain. "Once the agreement is signed, vessel owners will witness improved responses to distress calls and emergencies," Captain Sunday Umoren, Head, Maritime Safety and Seafarers Standards, said at a forum recently. Umoren noted that some strategies were being implemented to increase emergency the nation's response capacity. According to him, some of these strategies include a Memorandum of Understanding (MOU) with the Nigerian Navy and Air Force; launch of the Deep Blue Project which would extend surveillance over the entire maritime domain; and integration of Nigeria's maritime domain awareness asset with the FALCON EYE of Nigerian Navy. In response to stakeholders' outcry on the issue of emergency response capacity, Director General of NIMASA, Dr. Dakuku Peterside has pledged to take stock of what remains of the architecture for marine emergency response, reassess what the requirements are to resuscitate and sustain a world standard state of readiness, taking into account the funding, capacity and legislation that would be required to achieve the goal. Driving growth Maritime Logistics Driving Force Behind Globalisation Dakuku-Peterside T he Director General of the Nigerian Maritime Administration and Safety Agency (NIMADA), Dr. Dakuku Peterside, has said the maritime sector and logistics are the driving force behind globalisation. He stressed that everything about trade and development is centred on maritime transport and logistics. Dakuku stated this at the inauguration of Council Members of the Chattered Institute of Logistics and Transport (CILT) and investiture of Fellowship awards held in Lagos. He noted that NIMASA was working hard to ensure that Nigeria continued to position itself for optimal benefits from international transport and logistics. He said NIMASA was willing and ready to partner with CILT, as they are very crucial to the growth of the maritime sector. Dakuku said: "The maritime sector is all about movement of goods from one point to another and this cannot be done without logistics. This is a confirmation of the fact that everything about trade and development depends solely on logistics." Dakuku, who spoke on behalf of other awardees shortly after the investiture of the fellowship awards, assured that they would all work together to ensure the t 19 u APRIL1 4 - 28, 2019 quick passage of the Act establishing the CILT. He expressed optimism that the bill would be passed before the end of next year and assented to by President Muhammadu Buhari. The NIMASA boss commended the leadership of CILT for their commitment to the development of the transportation sector, pledging that the new inductees will ensure that CILT is established on a sound footing in Nigeria and that capacity building of members will be made a priority. Also speaking, the National President of CILT, Mr. Jibril Ibrahim, pledged the commitment of CILT to the growth of the maritime sector in Nigeria. Ibrahim also emphasised the critical role of logistics in the actualisation of a robust maritime sector and promised that the body will continue to partner relevant agencies and stakeholders to make Nigeria's maritime sector viable and competitive. The CILT President, who is also the Director, Maritime Labour Services at NIMASA, called for more inter-agency collaboration to solve the problem of traffic congestion at the port area. On his part, the Director General of the African Centre for Supply Chains, Dr. Obiora Madu, who was Chairman of the occasion, sug g ested a strong er partnership with the various agencies in the area of capacity building. Madu noted that the intellectual capacity of the institute was needed in the agencies of government. He charged the inductees to bring in their wealth of experience and expertise to assist CILT achieve its aim of realising a viable transportation sector. The highpoint of the event was the award of Fellowship to deserving industry stakeholders, who have contributed to the growth of the maritime sector. Among the inductees were Dr. Dakuku; Managing Director of the Nigerian Ports Authority (NPA), Miss Hadiza Bala Usman; and Managing Director of Creseda International Limited, Mr. Jonas Nilsson.