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Officials review progress made through cross-border road transport

Officials review progress made through cross-border road transport

Officials from the Cross-Border Road Transport – Regulators’ Forum this week gathered in Swakopmund to evaluate the progress made by the forum since its establishment two years ago.

The forum which was officially established in March 2018 serves as a body that is geared to improve the cross-border road transport systems in the region by harmonising policies, reduce transportation costs, delays and transit times as well as eliminate regulatory fragmentation in the region.

Speaking at the opening of the two-day workshop in the Namibian coastal town, the chairperson of the forum, Lwazi Mboyi said the forum is a vital cog in creating a better environment of creating an economically vibrant Africa.

“We recognise the fact that Intra-Africa trade is still at its lowest and ours should yet be another attempt to contribute to a significant improvement on that front,” Mboyi said.

The forum has established some key challenges in intr-Africa trade which include different regulatory requirements such as different documentation standards; requirements and operating procedures; different third-party insurance cover requirements; delays and congestion along corridors; and high cost of doing business.

“All these make it difficult for the cross-border road transport industry to realise its full potential and we have been bestowed the responsibility to work collectively to eliminate all of them. This juncture presents a great milestone, but we must not rest on our laurels, great work lies ahead. I am confident that this collective is capable of navigating through these challenges so that the forum can achieve the goals it has set for itself,” he added.


 

About The Author

Donald Matthys

Donald Matthys has been part of the media fraternity since 2015. He has been working at the Namibia Economist for the past three years mainly covering business, tourism and agriculture. Donald occasionally refers to himself as a theatre maker and has staged two theatre plays so far. Follow him on twitter at @zuleitmatthys

Following reverse listing, public can now acquire shareholding in Paratus Namibia

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20 February 2020, Windhoek, Namibia: Paratus Namibia Holdings (PNH) was founded as Nimbus Infrastructure Limited (“Nimbus”), Namibia’s first Capital Pool Company listed on the Namibian Stock Exchange (“NSX”).

Although targeting an initial capital raising of N$300 million, Nimbus nonetheless managed to secure funding to the value of N$98 million through its CPC listing. With a mandate to invest in ICT infrastructure in sub-Sahara Africa, it concluded management agreements with financial partner Cirrus and technology partner, Paratus Telecommunications (Pty) Ltd (“Paratus Namibia”).

Paratus Namibia Managing Director, Andrew Hall

Its first investment was placed in Paratus Namibia, a fully licensed communications operator in Namibia under regulation of the Communications Regulatory Authority of Namibia (CRAN). Nimbus has since been able to increase its capital asset base to close to N$500 million over the past two years.

In order to streamline further investment and to avoid duplicating potential ICT projects in the market between Nimbus and Paratus Namibia, it was decided to consolidate the operations.

Publishing various circulars to shareholders, Nimbus took up a 100% shareholding stake in Paratus Namibia in 2019 and proceeded to apply to have its name changed to Paratus Namibia Holdings with a consolidated board structure to ensure streamlined operations between the capital holdings and the operational arm of the business.

This transaction was approved by the Competitions Commission as well as CRAN, following all the relevant regulatory approvals as well as the necessary requirements in terms of corporate governance structures.

Paratus Namibia has evolved as a fully comprehensive communications operator in Namibia and operates as the head office of the Paratus Group in Africa. Paratus has established a pan-African footprint with operations in six African countries, being: Angola, Botswana, Mozambique, Namibia, South Africa and Zambia.

The group has achieved many successes over the years of which more recently includes the building of the Trans-Kalahari Fibre (TKF) project, which connects from the West Africa Cable System (WACS) eastward through Namibia to Botswana and onward to Johannesburg. The TKF also extends northward through Zambia to connect to Dar es Salaam in Tanzania, which made Paratus the first operator to connect the west and east coast of Africa under one Autonomous System Number (ASN).

This means that Paratus is now “exporting” internet capacity to landlocked countries such as Zambia, Botswana, the DRC with more countries to be targeted, and through its extensive African network, Paratus is well-positioned to expand the network even further into emerging ICT territories.

PNH as a fully-listed entity on the NSX, is therefore now the 100% shareholder of Paratus Namibia thereby becoming a public company. PNH is ready to invest in the future of the ICT environment in Namibia. The public is therefore invited and welcome to acquire shares in Paratus Namibia Holdings by speaking to a local stockbroker registered with the NSX. The future is bright, and the opportunities are endless.