LUSAKA, July 24 (Reuters) - Zambia has issued a $1.25 billion eurobond meant for infrastructure development at a coupon rate of 8.97 percent, a government statement seen by Reuters on Friday said. (Read more)
According to the President’s special assistant for PR, the government was looking to raise between $1.5 and $2 billion. An update from the Financial Times indicated that the offering started off with tepid demand at the beginning of the day but picked up significantly toward the end of the trading day with the order book exceeding $2.5 billion. The issuance coincidentally happened on the same day Goldman Sachs revised down their global copper price projections - in a week when commodities from gold to oil were down big!
Atlas Mara in talks to buy Finance Bank Zambia
Atlas Mara Ltd., the company co-founded by Bob Diamond to invest in African financial businesses, is in talks to buy Finance Bank Zambia Plc, according to three people with knowledge of the matter. Negotiations began as early as March, two of the people said, asking not to be identified because they’re not authorized to comment on the talks. (Read more)
Puma Energy Zambia (LUSE: PUMA) reported a 21% year-on-year decrease in net profit to K54 million in financial year (FY) 2014. Earnings per Share (EPS) came in at K0.108 (K0.136 in 2013):
Inflation falls to 7.4% as trade deficit widens
Data released by the Central Statistics Office (CSO) showed that inflation fell to by 0.3% from the previous month to 7.4% in February 2015. The decrease was driven by a drop in non-food inflation. This is the third consecutive drop in the inflation rate since it hit a high of 8.1% in November 2014.
Energy Regulation Board reduces pump price of petroleum products
The Energy Regulation Board (ERB) reduced the pump prices of petrol, diesel and kerosene by K0.25, K0.38 and K0.27 per liter, respectively while wholesale prices were cut by 3.66%. The changes took effect yesterday at midnight. The new pump prices of petrol, diesel and kerosene per liter are K10.48, K9.73 and K7.21, respectively. Global oil prices have fallen by over 27% over the last 5 months and yesterday Brent crude traded below $70 per barrel for the first time since 2010.
Zambia has one of the highest fuel prices in the region at K10.63 ($1.67) per litre which is mostly a consequence of the inefficient procurement process. This contributes a significant portion to the cost of doing business in this country. In a quest to reduce pump prices, the Government is looking to start the blending of biofuels with petroleum products for national consumption at 10 percent and 5 percent for ethanol and biodiesel, respectively.
Miners respond to new mining tax regime
As expected, mining companies responded with displeasure to the new fiscal regime in their sector as outlined in the 2015 national budget last week. Barrick Gold (owners of Lumwana mine) said that the change in taxation would affect the viability of their mine. First Quantum talked about the negative impact the changes would have on jobs and future investment. Analysts shaved off an average of 4 percent off the Net Asset Values (NAVs) of some of the mines that they cover.
Puma Energy Zambia announced the appointment Sidy Bane as the new CEO of their Zambia operations. They said the following in a press statement:
The Board and Management of Puma Energy Zambia Plc is pleased to announce the appointment of Mr Sidy Bane as the new Chief Executive Officer of Puma Energy Zambia Plc with effect from 1st February 2014.
Mr Bane, is a holder of a Masters Degree in Business Administration and has over 17 years of experience in the oil industry having worked for Exon Mobil for 11 years before he joined the Puma Energy Group.
During his career in the Puma Energy Group, he has held various key senior positions in Congo Brazaville, Angola and in South Africa where he was in charge of the Retail Segment for the Africa Region.
Prior to this appointment, Mr Bane was the Managing Director of Puma Energy Namibia Limited.
Mr Bane takes over from Mr Fumu Mondoloka who resigned from the Company to pursue other interests.
The Board of Directors, Management and staff would like to congratulate Mr Bane on his new appointment and also thank Mr Fumu Mondoloka for his valuable contribution to the Company during his tenure of office and wish him success in his future endeavors.
Trying to decipher this puzzle that is Zambia by using a variety of publicly available data (structured and unstructured) in conjunction with my own skill/experience. * * *