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MTI CEO Hilmy Cader with some MTI Rwanda project team members


MTI Consulting, led by its CEO Hilmy Cader, is in Kigali this week to launch its East African operations, whilst working on nationally strategic consulting projects for Rwanda.

MTI had recently completed the Strategic Plan for Rwanda Cooperation - the Rwanda state-owned enterprise charged with the responsibility of sharing the country’s home-grown initiatives and good practices that have enabled Rwanda’s remarkable socio-economic transformation. 

“Rwanda, considered to be the ‘tech hub’ of Africa and tipped to be the ‘Singapore’ of Africa,  is the 49th country in which MTI has carried out an assignment, since our inception in 1997. Africa is undoubtedly the growth continent of the 21st century.  Over the last three years, we have been focusing on regional opportunities across East Africa – given the access to these markets from Asia and the Gulf. Given Kigali’s strategic location, we plan to access the key markets of Kenya, Uganda, Tanzania, Kenya and Ethiopia from Kigali,” said Cader. 

Coming out of a devastating genocide in 1994, Rwanda’s socio-economic transformation is considered a ‘case study’ for the developing world. In 2019, Rwanda was  the world’s third fastest growing economy, ranked 38th (and second in Africa) for Ease of Doing Business and first for Government Transparency in Africa.  Interestingly, Rwanda has the highest female participation (61 percent) in Parliament in the world and it ranked ninth in Global Gender Gap Index 2020 (first in Africa).

MTI is an internationally-networked boutique management consultancy – having carried out 670 projects across 49 countries – in the last 24 years. MTI’s practices cover strategy, operations, corporate finance and digital and analytics. -

An MTN stand at an expo. It has received regulatory approvals to list 20 percent of its shareholding. Photo Nation Media Group


MTN Uganda has kicked off a marketing blitz for its initial public offering (IPO) in meetings with Kenyan professional groups and retail investors in Nairobi to bolster subscription.

The $250 million IPO opened mid-last month and closes on November 22.

“Kenya’s Capital Markets Authority (CMA) has provided its ‘no objection’ for the MTN Uganda Initial Public Offering (IPO) to be marketed in Kenya, allowing the marketing of the shares to both professional investors and retail investors following the opening of the offer in Uganda on 11th October 2021,” the firm said in a statement Thursday.

Investors can apply for shares through SBG Securities, a subsidiary of South Africa's Stanbic Holdings Plc and Dyer and Blair which is the lead retail broker.

The IPO is open to citizens of the East African Community member states, with each investment, pegged at a minimum of 500 shares which if fully allocated results in a minimum investment of Ush100,000 (about $28).

“Kenyan investors will require a valid identification national ID or passport to open a Securities Central Depository (SCD) account at the Uganda Securities Exchange (USE) to apply for the MTN Uganda IPO,” said the telco.

South Africa’s MTN Group is selling 4.47 billion shares or a fifth of its stake in its Ugandan subsidiary to investors at a price equivalent to Ush200 ($0.06) apiece.

“All East Africans who apply for shares, will receive 5 bonus shares for every 100 shares they are allocated,” said MTN. - BRIAN NGUGI, The EastAfrican


Kenya, Ethiopia, Burundi, South Sudan and Djibouti are at high risk of debt distress due to a sharp increase in loan service burden.

The African Development Bank's East Africa Regional Economic Outlook 2021 released Wednesday shows these countries have breached the high-risk debt service ratio due to reduced export performance last year. 

According to the pan African lender, debt service to export now exceeds 20 per cent of GDP in Kenya and has risen substantially in Ethiopia, Uganda and Tanzania since 2010.  

According to a debt status report by the Central Bank of Kenya, the country's external debt service to exports ratio declined from 19.2 per cent in June 2000 to 3.5 per cent in 2010, then rose to a high of 31 per cent in June 2019.

'' The high ratio in 2019 was mainly on account of a one-off $750 million Eurobond repayment. The ratio has been declining in the last two years also due to an improvement of the terms on new external loans,'' CBK's report reads in part. 

Somalia, Sudan and Eritrea are already in debt distress while Uganda, Rwanda and Comoros are moderate. The debt burden is low in Tanzania. 

Several other international lending and credit rating agencies have also raised eyebrows on Kenya's debt situation, with the International Monetary Fund (IMF) for instance raising the country's debt distress to high from moderate due to the impact of the coronavirus crisis. 

Mid this month, Pan African rating agency, Agusto & Co has termed Kenya's debt situation as 'moderately high risk', affirming creditworthiness at B+.

In an analysis of Kenya's economy, the Nigeria-headquartered rating firm said the country's elevated debt levels due to its budget deficit, with a significant impact on interest burden has increased vulnerability to internal and external shocks.

The region's economy is expected to recover despite high adeptness.

According to AFDB, East African's GDP growth is projected to recover to an average of 4.1 per cent in 2021 from 0.4per cent in 2020, supported by the global economic recovery.

However, the slow rollout of Covid-19 vaccines and risks of spikes in infections could dampen that outlook.

''The pandemic has had diverse impacts across the region, with countries highly dependent on tourism being the hardest hit,'' AFDB said.

The pan-African bank recommends a raft of policy interventions required to accelerate the region's recovery and build resilience in the wake of Covid-19, including ramping up vaccinations and designing and implementing economic stimulus packages and recovery strategies toward credible fiscal consolidation programs

The report touched on  13 countries: Burundi, Comoros, Djibouti, Eritrea, Ethiopia, Kenya, Rwanda, Seychelles, Somalia, South Sudan, Sudan, Tanzania, and Uganda. - Victor Amadala, The Star

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