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Kenya keen on displacing Tanzania, to build biggest import, storage gas facility in Mombasa

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East Africa powerhouse, Kenya is planning to construct the biggest import and storage gas facility in Mombasa and license more private companies to compete with Tanzania.

Until now, Tanzania has dominated the business for years in the region but through the planned construction seeks to dominate in the supply of liquefied petroleum gas (LPG).

In Tanzania, imports by LPG marketing companies (LMCs) grew by 12.9 percent, up from 107,083 tonnes in 2016/17 to 120,961 tonnes in the 2017/18 financial year. Imports also grew by 20 percent in the following year, reaching 145,800 tonnes, then recorded a massive 30 percent growth, reaching 190,248 tonnes in the 2019/20 financial year, data from the Energy and Water Utilities Regulatory Authority (Ewura) shows.

 Kenya is hoping to give her east African neighbour a good run in the push to increase its stakes and investment in the ply of liquefied petroleum gas (LPG).

The announcement for the 25,000 tonnes storage facility was announced on Thursday by the Kenya Pipeline Company (KPC). Kenya had  banned imports of gas from Tanzania through the Namanga border which it shared with Tanzania.

KPC says faster loading is expected to translate to lower prices for LPG by 30 percent once operational as oil marketing companies pass the benefits of reduced demurrage costs to consumers.

“LPG storage capacity in Mombasa is limited and huge demurrage is incurred by LPG ships thus affecting the final consumer price of bottled gas,” read part of KPC in tender documents.

The KPC will connect to the Ksh42 billion new Kipevu Oil Terminal 2 (KOT) at the port of Mombasa comes few days after Kenya banned imports of gas from Tanzania through the Namanga border.

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COVID-19: Friendship renewed as Algeria opens land border with Tunisia

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Algerian President, Abdelmadjid Tebboune has announced that it will reopen the land border between the two countries in mid-July.

The border, which starts in the north at the Mediterranean coast, proceeding overland in a broadly southwards directions via a series of overland lines was closed in 2020 during the peak of Covid-19.

Abdelmadjid Tebboune made the announcement at Algiers airport alongside his Tunisian counterpart Kais Saied who was preparing to leave the country after attending the festivities marking the 60th anniversary of Algeria’s independence.

“We have taken a joint decision to reopen the land borders from July 15.”

Until the pandemic, more than three million Algerians travelled to Tunisia each year, according to local media.

Generally speaking, relations between Algeria and Tunisia have so far been homogenous. Although Algeria postponed the opening of it borders with Tunisia in May.

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The Gambia benefits from World Bank’s $68m grant to revive tourism industry

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The Gambia and the World Bank have sealed a $68m grant deal which will go to support the West African country’s tourism industry, hitherto the biggest contributor to its Gross Domestic Product (GDP), before the Coronavirus pandemic hit the global tourism sector, causing a near economic meltdown.

World Bank’s Managing Director of Operations, Axel Van Trotsenburg, who announced the signing of the deal at a ceremony in Gambia’s capital, Banjul, on Tuesday, said the grant is meant to support the diversification and climate resilience of the country’s tourism after the pandemic and economic crisis.

Trotsenburg added that promoting the diversification and climate resilience of tourism will help protect the Atlantic coastline of The Gambia from the effects of climate change.

About 20 per cent of The Gambian economy depends on earnings from its tourism as it is the largest foreign exchange earner for the government but the advent of the pandemic had caused the country’s economic growth to contract by 0.2 percent in 2020, according to the World Bank.

This was as a result of the global restrictions on travelling between 2020 and 2021, which prevented tourists and visitors going to the country, leading to the tourism industry taking a huge hit.

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