• IPCC Urges ‘Faster Action’ on Global Warming

    The United Nations (UN) says faster action is needed to keep global warming to agreed limits and delays until 2030 could force reliance on technologies to extract greenhouse gases from the air.
    In its latest report, the Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change (IPCC), which drew on the work of more than 1 000 experts, says a shift from fossil fuels to low-carbon energy such as wind, solar or nuclear power was affordable and will shave only about 0.06 percent point a year off world economic growth.
    "We have a window of opportunity for the next decade, and maximum the next two decades" to act at moderate costs, says Ottmar Edenhofer, co-chair of a Berlin meeting of the IPCC.
    To read the article titled, “Act fast to curb global warming: UN,” click here.

    SABC News
  • Call for Enhanced Poverty Fight in Zambia

    Pertti Anttinen, Zambia’s Finnish ambassador, states that the fight against poverty should be enhanced as Zambia celebrates 50 years of independence.

    Anttinen argues that it is important for Zambia to address the high poverty levels and make economic growth all inclusive for citizens.

    He further maintains that, “Zambia has been a long-time friend and one of the seven priority countries for Finland development." 

    To read the article titled, “Envoy calls for enhanced poverty fight,” click here.

    All Africa
  • SADC Ensuring Peace and Security

    The Southern African Development Community (SADC) organ on defence and security affairs, states that it will continue to work towards ensuring that the region continues to enjoy peace and stability.
    SADC director, Tanki Mothae, asserts that processes of regional integration could face challenges in regions that have no peace.
    "Without peace, the economic integration becomes a little bit difficult. At the same time, once economic integration has taken place, a very conducive environment of peace and security also becomes,” states Mothae.
    To read the article titled, “SADC to work towards ensuring peace and security within the region,” click here.

    All Africa
  • ILO: Weak Global Recovery Bad for Growth

    The International Labour Organisation (ILO) says a weak recovery from the 2008 global economic downturn has curtailed job growth around the world.

    The Geneva-based agency says that nearly 202 million workers were unemployed in 2013, up five million from the year before.

    It further says youth unemployment is a particular problem, with more than 74 million people aged 15 to 24 out of work in 2013, adding that the youth employment rate is more than 13 percent, more than twice the overall global jobless rate.

    To read the article titled, “ILO - weak global recovery has curtailed job growth,” click here.

    All Africa
  • Major Economic Policies are Incoherent - CDE

    The Centre for Development and Enterprise (CDE) says that the government's three major economic policies are incoherent.
    In relation to the National Development Plan, the New Growth Path, and the Trade and Industry Department's Industrial Policy Action Plan, the CDE executive director, Ann Bernstein, believes it is essential to have consistency within these policies.
    “The economy is in trouble and South Africa needs certainty. It's time to make the tough choices and stick to them," explains Bernstein.
    To read the article titled, “South Africa has incoherent economic policies, says CDE report,” click here.

    Mail and Guardian
  • SouthSouthNorth: Personal Assistant

    SouthSouthNorth Projects - Africa
    Please note: this opportunity closing date has passed and may not be available any more.
    Opportunity closing date: 
    Sunday, October 13, 2013
    Opportunity type: 
    SouthSouthNorth (SSN) is a nonprofit organisation that supports the transition towards climate compatible economies and societies in developing countries. SSN facilitates this through collaborative and stakeholder-driven country processes as well as local-level action that address climate change and promote equitable access to sustainable development. SSN is currently involved in projects within Africa and Latin America.

    SSN seeks to appoint a Personal Assistant, based in Cape Town.

    • Overall administrative support;
    • Producing documents (briefing papers, reports and presentations), diary management;
    • Travel arrangements;
    • Organise events/meetings; and
    • Other duties as required by Directors.
    • Grade 12 (matric);
    • Minimum of three years Personal Assistant experience;
    • Extremely competent in computer skills;
    • Experience in administration and data management;
    • Friendly, energetic, peoples person who has good organization and planning skills;
    • High work ethic and good task prioritization;
    • Verbal and written communication skills;
    • Problem solving abilities;
    • Attention to detail;
    • Accuracy, flexibility reliability and team player.
    Starting date: Must be available immediately.

    Salary: A salary based on experience will be offered.

    To apply, submit a CV and motivation letter to Lee-Ann Jacobs at

    Please quote the source of this advertisement in your application - NGO Pulse Portal.

    SouthSouthNorth will contact shortlisted candidates within two weeks of the closing date. Should you not be contacted, consider your application unsuccessful.

    For more about SouthSouthNorth, refer to

    For other vacancies in the NGO sector, refer to


    Want to reach the widest spectrum of NGO and development stakeholders in South Africa as part of your communication and outreach objectives? Learn more about how the NGO Pulse Premium Advertising Service can support your communication requirements. Visit for more information. 
  • Long-Term Community Development Investment Pays Off

    After nine years of waiting, the community of Ncera, a sprawling rural settlement located just outside East London, celebrated the success of its long-term community development project in the form of a launch to welcome the first harvest from the Ncera Macadamia Farming Project.

    Along with local government and community organisations, the people of Ncera village hailed the success of the project, a community planting and harvesting initiative which aims to alleviate poverty and create employment in the region.

    “This launch seeks to recognise and celebrate the first harvest of an initial 50 hectares that is currently being cultivated, out of a total of 300ha.This is the first community-owned Macadamia plantation in the Eastern Cape – the community owns the full macadamia value chain, namely the nursery, plantations and the processing plant,” explained an elated Wayne Simpson, Ncera Macadamia Farming’s managing director.

    In short, the overall goal of the project is to utilise the Ncera land to create long-term, sustainable economic opportunities and jobs in Ncera and surrounding areas.
    Simpson explains  further: “The Ncera Plantations have created 90 permanent jobs and  14 seasonal jobs thus far, and are poised to create 400 jobs at full production and also inject a salary bill of R9 million per annum into the local economy  perpetually.”

    The Macadamia plantation is a project of Ncera Macadamia Farming, an initiative that was created with a long-term vision of developing into a world – class macadamia farm and to help improve the living conditions of the people of the Ncera community. The company upholds social development ideals, especially the development of sustainable black farmers, and has committed itself to investing in other social upliftment projects.

    The Ncera community is rich in human and land resources. With that in mind, Ncera Macadamia Farming believes that the way forward for all stakeholders is through sharing these resources and developing these community assets in a sustainable manner. Eighty hectares of community land has been planted to macadamias already, acting as the model for further expansion into the Ncera community.

    The government has supported the Ncera communities with infrastructure to develop their land and make it attractive for private sector investors to partner with the community, to develop the Macadamia plantations and to supply international markets with Macadamia nuts. 

    Vulindlela Investment Trust (VIT) - also one of the supporters - currently owns 51 percent of Ncera Macadamia Farming, while the remaining 49 percent is owned by Private Sector investors. The deal is such that government provided funds on behalf of the community to build orchard infrastructure on their land, which they own.
    The project has made tremendous progress since starting to operate in 2005. “This project has been good for the community of Ncera and having worked with them from the beginning, I have to say I am very proud of the progress and development. We hope to acquire more land to extend the project and we are accessing all the help we can get to help us reach our goal. We recently joined the Legends business support programme which is sponsored by Old Mutual and it has been very helpful in terms of marketing support and dealing with some of the challenges we experience,” adds Wayne.

    Among the achievements of the project is the 104 jobs created, training and skills development, further development of sustainable black farmers and the commitment of future company dividends into social upliftment projects.

    The launch itself was a jovial affair attended by chiefs, mayors and members of nearby communities. Chief Dumalisile of Amajingqi from the Mbashe area attended the launch along with his tribal council and other members from his community.

    “This celebration indicates that communities are able to own and drive their own initiatives and be fully sustainable, as against projects imposed on people. We believe that this project will have a great impact on the community and that is why we (AmaJingqi) support it. That is also why we have availed our land to be considered for a similar project,” concludes chief Dumalisile.

    To learn more about the Ncera Macadamia Farming Project, contact Wayne Simpson on 081 320 3482 or email him on

    - Abram Molelemane is media officer at Fetola. 
    Abram Molelemane
  • Africa Urged to Step Up the Tempo

    Africa has favourable medium-term economic prospects although growth rates have not recovered to pre-crisis levels, according to a report that also fingered rising inequality and abusive practices by multinationals.

    Co-authored by the Organisation for Economic Co-operation and Development (OECD), the 2013 African Economic Outlook points out that, "With projected growth of 4.8 percent in 2013 and 5.3 percent in 2014, Africa's growth performance would continue to remain below average growth ... preceding the 2009 global recession."

    The report further states that the continent needs seven percent growth to reduce poverty, while its population increases by two percent a year.

    To read the article titled, “Africa must step up the tempo - report,” click here.


  • Africa: Whose Promise?

    The 23rd World Economic Forum on Africa (WEF) themed ‘Delivering Africa's Promise" ended on 10 May in Cape Town. The three-day forum provided a platform for regional and global leaders from business, government and civil society to expand Africa's integration agenda and renew commitment to a sustainable economic growth path. After the conclusion of the WEF the question remains: Whose promise does it aim to fulfil?

    The WEF identified economic diversification, boosting infrastructure and unlocking Africa's talent as the key points of address for accelerating and achieving success. However, a critical factor for achieving economic prosperity, reducing inequality and improving unemployment is missing from this equation: Addressing gender inequality and women's equal access to economic opportunities.

    Prior to the WEF, the African Women's Development Fund (AWDF) convened a two-day meeting on Women's Economic Empowerment and Livelihoods of which 18 African organisations participated. The meeting expressed doubts that the current WEF agenda will address women's needs in Africa:

    "We remain sceptical that real progress for Africa's one billion people - the majority of whom are women - will change radically through policies centred unremittingly on markets and profits, and based predominantly on the extraction of mineral resources. African people's needs and interests, particularly those of women, are not part of this narrow economic vision."

    The AWDF meeting urged political and business leaders to acknowledge that aligning production systems to the requirements of external powers and profit devalue African women's economic contribution. The focus on the formal economy and traditional business models relegates women's skills and knowledge to the ‘informal economy'.

    Despite widespread acknowledgement of the links between economic development and gender equality, few countries in Africa consider gender dimensions in economic policies. Women are an integral part of economic production and yet their contribution to economic development is not recognised.

    Women invest more than 90 percent of their earnings in their families' health, education and their communities. The unpaid care and the non-market processes of where women predominate, contributes to the healthy functioning of the economy.

    AWDF communications specialist, Nana Darkoa Sekyiamah said AWDF is hopeful that the WEF heard and heeded their key concerns, explaining that Dr Frannie Leautier, the executive secretary of the African Capacity Building Foundation (ACBF) voiced the issues at the WEF. Sekyiamah emphasised the need to "place African women squarely at the centre of initiatives to realise Africa's promise".

    In her address to the WEF, Malawian President, Joyce Banda said, "You can never consider yourself a leader if you do not reach out and empower women." With constitutional reviews taking place across the region and elections coming up in Zimbabwe, Madagascar, Mauritius, Mozambique and Swaziland, governments and business leaders must pay due attention to Banda's statement as they play a pivotal role in determining the road ahead.

    Unlocking the human potential of half the region's population can only be a win-win solution and this demands the empowerment of women in all social, political and economic spheres. No economic strategy will be successful if they do not look at prioritise women's participation and access to development and economic decision-making.

    Furthermore, equality of opportunity is not the same as equality of outcomes. Progressive policies, laws and marginal representation remain mere tokens, unless they make a real and substantive difference in the lives of women at a grassroots level.

    African leaders must recognise and regulate the effects of macroeconomic policies on microeconomic performance and they must harness the potential of the informal sector by linking it to the formal economy.

    We are in the African Women's Decade (AWD) - a decade in which organisations and political leaders should aim to reduce poverty and promote economic empowerment of women through a grassroots approach to gender equality.

    Members of the Southern African Development Community (SADC) are signatories to a wide range of international and regional commitments to achieve gender equality including the SADC Protocol on Gender and Development. Thirteen countries in SADC have signed the protocol, which sets 28 targets to be achieved by 2015, one of which aims to ensure equal participation of women and men in policy formulation and implementation of economic policies.

    Until leaders align the targets of the SADC Gender Protocol with the economic strategies and outcomes of forums such as the WEF, gender inequality will severely impede Africa's economic growth and development.

    African business and political leaders must assume their responsibility to economic justice and realise that ‘Delivering Africa's Promise’ will demand a shift of focus from Africa's mineral resources as key to transforming the continent and instead to acknowledging that women in Africa form one of the fastest-growing markets with the greatest purchasing power.

    - Donna Godfrey is a freelance producer and writer based in Cape Town. This article is part of the Gender Links Opinion and Commentary Service that provides fresh views on everyday news.
    Donna Godfrey
  • ILO Report Focuses on Unemployment

    According to a new report released by the United Nations’ International Labour Organisation, an estimated 73 million young people will be out of work this year.

    The report, which calls for creative and wide-ranging policy solutions to address the problem, states that the weakening of the global recovery has further aggravated the youth jobs crisis and that queues for available jobs have become longer and longer for young jobseekers.

    ILO assistant director general for policy, Jose-Manuel Salazar-Xirinachs, says is it important for governments to invest more in training and retraining. The report further notes that the long-term impact of the youth employment crisis could be felt for decades.

    To read the article titled, “UN concerned over long term impact of youth employment crisis,” click here.

    SABC News
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