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Nigeria: French oil giant, TotalEnergies, joins train to sell stake in onshore oil production

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The wave of multinationals leaving African countries has continued as French oil major TotalEnergies has announced it will put up for sale its minority stake in a Nigerian oil joint venture.

TotalEnergies Chief Executive Officer, Patrick Pouyanne, was quoted by international media – Bloomberg that “disruption of local communities are sources of great concern in the country,”

The firm attributed its plans to join the bandwagon of other oil majors and sell its stake in an onshore oil production joint venture in Nigeria to the disruption of local communities which has become a source of great concern.

Last year, Royal Dutch Shell, entered talks with the Nigerian government to sell the Anglo-Dutch company’s stake in onshore oilfields, CEO Ben van Beurden.

In February, Seplat Energy Plc, unveiled plans to acquire the entire share capital of Mobil Producing Nigeria Unlimited (MPNU) from Exxon Mobil Corporation Delaware (USA Incorporated). That includes all of Exxon’s entire shallow water assets in the Niger Delta.

The French energy giant will look to offload its 10 percent interest in a firm that holds 20 onshore and shallow water permits in the West African country, Mr. Pouyanne said.

Shell Plc, the operator of the licenses, is already considering bids from four local firms for its 30 percent shareholding in the company,” he said.

African countries have experienced departures of multinationals. Last month, ride-hailing company, Uber, suspended its services in Tanzania as a result of regulations that are not business-friendly which has made its operation in the East African country. Standard Chartered Bank also announced it has ended its operations in some African countries earlier this month.

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Nigerien President, Mohamed Bazoum wants employment quotas for African immigrants

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Niger’s President Mohamed Bazoum wants employment quotas for African immigrants tailored to job needs from European countries.

President Bazoum made the position in an interview with an Italian newspaper, La Repubblica. on Friday.

The president’s argument is that the quota will address European countries’ needs for its labour market and could help resolve the problem of illegal migration and human trafficking.

“In France, Spain, and Italy you have many jobs in sectors of employment where Africans can work,” Bazoum said.

“These numbers need to be established, country by country, and then the consulates entrusted with the responsibility of enforcing them.”

Surveys of African migrants in or heading toward Europe reveal that the majority were either employed or in school at the time of their departure. Yet, they felt despair over their economic prospects.

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IMF Chief, Ceyla Pazarbasioglu, to visit China over Africa’s growing debt profile

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As the debt profile of many African countries continues to rise, the International Monetary Fund strategy chief, Ceyla Pazarbasioglu will travel to China next week for another high-level meeting.

Her travel is part of efforts to press the world’s largest sovereign creditor for quicker progress on debt restructurings for countries in need.

The IMF chief had called for debt restructuring arrangements for Zambia and Chad to be completed shortly.

Pazarbasioglu said it was critical to move forward and that “outreach to China next week is very important, at the highest levels.”

“It’s moving – very slowly, but it’s moving,” Pazarbasioglu said, noting that the participation of mining company Glencore Plc in the Chad treatment was also “a very good sign” that “even the most difficult private sector participants” were participating.

She said the Paris Club of official bilateral creditors had taken years to hammer out their debt relief processes, and China was learning, although she noted that the debt issues facing borrowing countries now were acute.

“The problem we have is that we don’t have that time right now because these countries are very fragile and dealing with debt vulnerabilities,” she said. “What we need is speed.”

Pazarbasioglu said the IMF would continue to press for changes to the Common Framework, including a freeze in debt payments when countries apply for a debt treatment, as well as clearer procedures and timelines for action, and ensuring comparable treatment for private creditors.

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