Oil, diamonds and nuclear power

23 October 2019 | Economics

Moscow - While Russia has traditionally focused on arms and grain exports to Africa, it is now looking to broaden its activities and influence.

Here are four sectors likely to be discussed at the Russia-Africa Summit in the Black Sea resort of Sochi.

Russia is one of the world's top hydrocarbon producers and exporters through energy giants like Gazprom, Rosneft and Lukoil.

But with 65% of its territory covered with permafrost, exploration and extraction are costly, so Russia is eyeing up promising reserves in Africa.

Gazprom is working in Algeria, where it has discovered three gas fields, as well as in Libya, though its activities there have largely stalled since the war in 2011. The group is also interested in taking part in a project to build a gas pipeline linking Nigeria to Europe via Algeria.

Lukoil recently discovered a number of oil and gas deposits in Ghana, Nigeria, Cameroon and Egypt.

For its part, Rosneft is investing in Egypt's huge Zohr offshore gas field and is set to be involved in some 20 projects with Nigeria's Oranto Petroleum energy group.

Atomic energy

Africa is almost entirely lacking in atomic energy, with just one nuclear power station on the whole continent, in South Africa.

Russian-built nuclear power stations have a price advantage over Western competitors and its nuclear agency Rosatom offers, attractive financing deals to customer countries.

It has already signed preliminary agreements on nuclear projects with Egypt, Nigeria, Sudan, Kenya, Ghana, Zambia and Uganda.

So far only Egypt has signed an agreement to build a station, one with four reactors at Dabaa on the Mediterranean coast by 2028 or 2029.

The cost per plant could be prohibitive, but Rosatom says countries including Rwanda are showing "great interest" in smaller-capacity, less expensive nuclear power stations.

Rich in mineral resources, Russia has significant expertise in extraction that could be deployed in other countries.

Resources

The world's top diamond producer, Russia's Alrosa, founded the Catoca mine in Angola in 2003. The Russians even built a hydroelectric power station to provide electricity for its operations. Since 2014 Alrosa has also been searching for new deposits in the country.

Alrosa this year announced it will also start mining activities in Zimbabwe.

Aluminium giant Rusal, formerly a target of US sanctions, is meanwhile mining bauxite in Guinea and has decided to reopen an aluminium refinery there closed since 2012.

Groups such as Norilsk Nickel, Severstal, Nordgold and Ferrum Mining are present in Madagascar, Guinea, South Africa and Burkina Faso.

Students

A massive slump in Russia's birth rate after the breakup of the Soviet Union has decimated the number of young people looking to study or join the workforce.

As it looks to fill empty seats in universities, Africa could provide a steady stream of students.

Charles Robertson, chief economist at Renaissance Capital, estimates that the number of Russian students has fallen by 40% in the last decade.

"There are no young Russian people anymore, so how do you fill up those universities? You bring in African students."

This will also bring Russia "a very subtle long-term benefit" in business dealings with Africa, he said.

"People are more willing to do trade deals with a country that they know, that they've been to."

The number of African students at Russian universities is around 17 000 according to education ministry figures. It has doubled in the last 10 years and is expected to grow. – Nampa/AFP

Similar News

 

RFA spend massive amounts

1 day - 06 August 2020 | Economics

The Road Fund Administration (RFA) has over the past five-years allocated N$ 177.2 million to the City of Windhoek towards road maintenance and traffic law...

Defenceless

2 days ago - 05 August 2020 | Economics

Jo-Maré Duddy - A mere N$10 million versus N$170 million.These two figures in the development budget for 2020/21 in many’s opinion will summarise government’s skewed...

EU provides support to Zimbabwe

2 days ago - 05 August 2020 | Economics

The European Union (EU) announced that it had further increased its support towards the most vulnerable in Zimbabwe by providing an additional 14.2 million euros...

Zim street vendors hit by virus clampdown

2 days ago - 05 August 2020 | Economics

Tonderayi Mukeredzi - Martha Kahari was already struggling to make ends meet after Zimbabwe's coronavirus lockdown forced her to stop selling second-hand clothes and tomatoes...

Assessing the pandemic impact

3 days ago - 04 August 2020 | Economics

The Namibia Statistics Agency (NSA) has embarked on its second-round survey to determine the effects Covid-19 has had on businesses in key economic sectors across...

Kunene commits on service delivery

4 days ago - 03 August 2020 | Economics

The most fundamental reason for the existence of any government is to ensure the provision of housing and land to its people.This was said by...

Kunene commits on service delivery

4 days ago - 03 August 2020 | Economics

The most fundamental reason for the existence of any government is to ensure the provision of housing and land to its people.This was said by...

Residents demand speed humps

1 week ago - 31 July 2020 | Economics

A concerned group of young residents at Rundu called for the erection of speed humps along the Maria Mwengere road, especially in front of a...

Kunene regional budget increases

1 week ago - 31 July 2020 | Economics

The Kunene regional health department reported that the novel coronavirus has instilled fear in the community and also increased the regional budget expenses.Kunene governor, Marius...

CoW complied with requirements

1 week ago - 30 July 2020 | Economics

The City of Windhoek complied with all requirements to be granted a Telecommunications Service Licence, Communications Regulatory Authority (CRAN) board chairperson Mihe Gaomab said.Gaomab in...

Latest News

Border bribery syndicate exposed

7 hours ago | Crime

OGONE TLHAGE WINDHOEK Namibian authorities have widened their investigation into the case of Immanuel David, who allegedly paid bribes to various individuals so...

Shame on Namibian football ‘gods’

7 hours ago | Opinion

Like the body of a disgraced African dictator awaiting official communication on what is to be done with it, Namibian football has been lying in...

Fishrot's De Klerk washes dirty...

7 hours ago | Justice

RONELLE RADEMEYER WINDHOEK Marén de Klerk, the lawyer who left Namibia amid allegations that millions of dollars from the Fishrot bribery scandal had passed...

She’s got style

7 hours ago | Art and Entertainment

MICHAEL KAYUNDE WINDHOEK Launched in 2018, stylist Yverischka Ivertor Bok is happy with the pace at which her brand,...

10th NAMAs go virtual

7 hours ago | Art and Entertainment

STAFF REPORTER WINDHOEK The Namibian Annual Music Awards executive committee recently announced that the 10th NAMAs will be delivered online. The event will...

Keeping it real

7 hours ago | Art and Entertainment

Awards season is finally in full swing, and this is testament to the stories carried in this edition.After being in suspense for a few months,...

Boy accused of murder granted...

7 hours ago | Justice

NAMPAGOBABISA 14-year-old boy who allegedly stabbed an 18-year-old to death at the Kanaan A informal settlement in Gobabis this past Saturday has been granted bail...

Pangolin traffickers nabbed

7 hours ago | Crime

ELLANIE SMITWINDHOEKIn the first cooperation between US law enforcement and the Namibian police, four suspected pangolin traffickers were recently arrested in Namibia.According to a statement...

Germany should fund Namibia's land...

7 hours ago | Columns

Henning Melber Nearly 30 years after starting land reform, Namibia's distribution of land ownership is still skewed. This is a colonial legacy. It is high...

Load More