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Building of Sh40bn Mombasa oil terminal set to begin

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Port of Mombasa
Port of Mombasa. FILE PHOTO | NMG 

Construction of the Sh40 billion Kipevu Oil Terminal (KOT) at the Port of Mombasa is expected to begin in earnest following the award of the contract to China Communications Construction Company.

Kenya Ports Authority (KPA) acting managing director Daniel Manduku said the contract was awarded after the tender committee completed due diligence weeks ago.

The new terminal will have the capacity to handle four vessels of up to 100,000 DWT (Dead Weight Tonnage) and will have a Liquefied Petroleum Gas (LPG) line that is expected to help stabilise gas supply in the country.

“We are soon embarking on construction of the Kipevu Oil Terminal (KOT) for discharge of fuel to the tanks owned by Kenya Pipeline Company and other oil companies at a cost of about $400 million (Sh40 billion),” Dr Manduku said.

Mombasa port currently has only two oil terminals that are ageing and too small to handle large quantities of imported oil and gas.

“The KOT will supplement the two facilities at Shimanzi and the old Kipevu terminal,” Dr Manduku said.

Construction of the oil terminals is part of KPA’s expansion programme that is seen to be critical to securing the country’s energy needs.

Dr Manduku said KPA has also started construction of the second container terminal using a Sh30 billion loan from Japan International Co-operation Agency (JICA).

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Construction of the first phase of the second container terminal, with additional capacity of 550,000 twenty-foot equivalent units (TEUs) every year, is complete.

Dr Manduku said the second phase will offer additional capacity of 450,000 twenty-foot equivalent units’ containers when completed, taking the total capacity to one million twenty-foot equivalent units by 2021.

He said KPA has also initiated tendering for the building of Shimoni port in Kwale.

Shimoni which lies on the Kenya/Tanzania border serves as a fishing port, but will be upgraded to handle other imports.

“Shimoni is a fishing port so we will build a multi-purpose berth that will incorporate fishing and handle other cargo.’’

Work on the facility will be done under a public private partnership (PPP).

Later while addressing the 26th Conference of the International Association of Maritime Economists, Dr Manduku said the Port of Mombasa, which is the biggest and busiest in eastern and central Africa hopes to handle a total throughput of 31.48 million tonnes and 1.281 million TEUS this year.

Last year, the port handled a total throughput of 30.35 million tonnes and 1. 190 million TEUs.

Total throughput at the Mombasa port has continued to grow at the rate of eight per cent while container traffic has been growing at the rate of 7.4 per cent in the past five years.

“We have implemented a comprehensive ICT system that includes a terminal operating system and an Enterprise Resource Planning system (ERP) for back office operations,” Dr Manduku said, adding that this, together with the Integrated Security Systems (ISS) and modern cargo handling equipment has improved efficiency of operations, cargo clearance procedures and security.

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World Bank pushes G-20 to extend debt relief to 2021

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World Bank Group President David Malpass has urged the Group of 20 rich countries to extend the time frame of the Debt Service Suspension Initiative(DSSI) through the end of 2021, calling it one of the key factors in strengthening global recovery.

“I urge you to extend the time frame of the DSSI through the end of 2021 and commit to giving the initiative as broad a scope as possible,” said Malpass.

He made these remarks at last week’s virtual G20 Finance Ministers and Central Bank Governors Meeting.

The World Bank Chief said the COVID-19 pandemic has triggered the deepest global recession in decades and what may turn out to be one of the most unequal in terms of impact.

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People in developing countries are particularly hard hit by capital outflows, declines in remittances, the collapse of informal labor markets, and social safety nets that are much less robust than in the advanced economies.

For the poorest countries, poverty is rising rapidly, median incomes are falling and growth is deeply negative.

Debt burdens, already unsustainable for many countries, are rising to crisis levels.

“The situation in developing countries is increasingly desperate. Time is short. We need to take action quickly on debt suspension, debt reduction, debt resolution mechanisms and debt transparency,” said Malpass.

ALSO READ:Global Economy Plunges into Worst Recession – World Bank

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Kenya’s Central Bank Drafts New Laws to Regulate Non-Bank Digital Loans

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The Central Bank of Kenya (CBK) will regulate interest rates charged on mobile loans by digital lending platforms if amendments on the Central bank of Kenya Act pass to law. The amendments will require digital lenders to seek approval from CBK before launching new products or changing interest rates on loans among other charges, just like commercial banks.

“The principal objective of this bill is to amend the Central bank of Kenya Act to regulate the conduct of providers of digital financial products and services,” reads a notice on the bill. “CBK will have an obligation of ensuring that there is fair and non-discriminatory marketplace access to credit.”

According to Business Daily, the legislation will also enable the Central Bank to monitor non-performing loans, capping the limit at not twice the amount of the defaulted loan while protecting consumers from predatory lending by digital loan platforms.

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Tighter Reins on Platforms for Mobile Loans

The legislation will boost efforts to protect customers, building upon a previous gazette notice that blocked lenders from blacklisting non-performing loans below Ksh 1000. The CBK also withdrew submissions of unregulated mobile loan platforms into Credit Reference Bureau. The withdrawal came after complaints of misuse over data in the Credit Information Sharing (CIS) System available for lenders.

Last year, Kenya had over 49 platforms providing mobile loans, taking advantage of regulation gaps to charge obscene rates as high as 150% a year. While most platforms allow borrowers to prepay within a month, creditors still pay the full amount plus interest.

Amendments in the CBK Act will help shield consumers from high-interest rates as well as offer transparency on terms of digital loans.

SEE ALSO: Central Bank Unveils Measures to Tame Unregulated Digital Lenders

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Scope Markets Kenya customers to have instant access to global financial markets

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NAIROBI, Kenya, Jul 20 – Clients trading through the Scope Markets Kenya trading platform will get instant access to global financial markets and wider investment options. 

This follows the launch of a new Scope Markets app, available on both the Google PlayStore and IOS Apple Store.

The Scope Markets app offers clients over 500 investment opportunities across global financial markets.

The Scope Markets app has a brand new user interface that is very user friendly, following feedback from customers.

The application offers real-time quotes; newsfeeds; research facilities, and a chat feature which enables a customer to make direct contact with the Customer Service Team during trading days (Monday to Friday).

The platform also offers an enhanced client interface including catering for those who trade at night.

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The client will get instant access to several asset classes in the global financial markets including; Single Stocks CFDs (US, UK, EU) such as Facebook, Amazon, Apple, Netflix and Google, BP, Carrefour;  Indices (Nasdaq, FTSE UK), Metals (Gold, Silver); Currencies (60+ Pairs), Commodities (Oil, Natural Gas).

The launch is part of Scope Markets Kenya strategy of enriching the customer experience while offering clients access to global trading opportunities.

Scope Markets Kenya CEO, Kevin Ng’ang’a observed, “the Sope Markets app is very easy to use especially when executing trades. Customers are at the heart of everything we do. We designed the Scope Markets app with the customer experience in mind as we seek to respond to feedback from our customers.”

He added that enhancing the client experience builds upon the robust trading platform, Meta Trader 5, unveiled in 2019, enabling Scope Markets Kenya to broaden the asset classes available on the trading platform.

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