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Guinea Bissau reaches $47 mln deal on submarine cable

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BISSAU (Reuters) – Guinea Bissau has agreed a memorandum of understanding with the World Bank, Orange and MTN for a $47 million project to link the country to a submarine telecoms cable connecting Africa with Europe, the government said on Wednesday.

Under the agreement, French telecoms company Orange and South Africa’s MTN Group will form a consortium with the government of the West African country, the statement by the finance and transport ministries said.

“The World Bank unlocks $31.596 million in the form of a loan to connect Bissau to the international fibre optic cable,” said the finance and transport ministries in a joint statement.

Guinea Bissau will be hooking up to the ACE (Africa Coast Europe) cable, the statement said, one of five linking countries in West Africa to Europe. Guinea Bissau will the be last coastal country in the region to link to a submarine cable.

Orange and MTN will provide about $8 million each over a five-year period, the statement said.

The project is due to be completed in 18 months and officials said it would improve internet speeds and reduce communication costs in the poor, Portuguese-speaking country.

Only 3.8 percent of individuals in the country of 1.8 million are internet users, according to the U.N.’s International Telecommunication Union.


(Reporting by Alberto Dabo; writing by Emma Farge; editing by David Clarke)

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Nigeria to sell 140 bln naira bonds on June 21 – debt office

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LAGOS (Reuters) – Nigeria plans to auction 140 billion naira ($460 million) in bonds on June 21, the Debt Management Office said on Friday.

The debt office will sell 40 billion naira of bonds due in 2021 and 50 billion naira each of bonds due in 2027 and in 2037, using a Dutch auction system.

Settlement is expected the day after the sale. The bonds are re-openings of previous issues.

The central bank on Wednesday announced plans to sell 133.24 billion naira worth of Treasury bills at an auction next week.

Nigeria, which has Africa’s biggest economy, issues sovereign bonds each month to help fund its budget deficit, support the local debt market and maintain a benchmark for companies to follow.

The West African country expects a budget deficit of 2.36 trillion naira this year as it tries to spend its way out of a recession. It expects to raise money to cover more than half the deficit from the local market.

It has a series of debt issues lined up including a $300 million diaspora bond and a 100 billion naira debut domestic sukuk this month.

($1 = 304.68 naira)


(Reporting by Oludare Mayowa; editing by Alexis Akwagyiram)


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Ivorian cocoa arrivals down around 10 pct by July 3 vs last season

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ABIDJAN (Reuters) – Cocoa arrivals at ports in top grower Ivory Coast reached around

1,412,000 tonnes by July 3 since the start of the season on October 1, 2015, exporters estimated on Monday, down from 1,575,000 tonnes in the same period the previous season.

Exporters estimated around 18,000 tonnes of beans were delivered to the West African state’s two ports of Abidjan and San Pedro between June 27 and July 3, down from 29,000 tonnes during the same period last year.


(Reporting by Ange Aboa; Editing by Matthew Mpoke Bigg and Louise Heavens)

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