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Natural resources key to developmental goals

United Nations Resident Coordinator and UNDP representative in Namibia, Ambassador Musinga  Bandora, held a talk this week at the University of Namibia on the new Millennium Development Goals (MDGs) with the current ones only five hundred days away from expiry. Evaluations of the current MDGs he noted were driven more by donor funding and not by national resources. “At times, slow or conditional flow of aid constrained progress.” Bandora said. The UN representative said that future goals will require crony capitalism and systematic corruption to be done away with. He added that the state should create an environment for business to prosper by employing social safety nets in creating employment through programmes that make a difference in terms of investment. In his speech Bandora noted that the results in Namibia have all been mixed but overall quite encouraging and that the country is on course to meet most of the MDGs targets-even if partially. It was observed by Bandora that most of the MDG progress was made in countries such as Namibia, where national resources played a key role. He also noted that unemployment among the youth is a ticking time bomb and will undermine the agenda unless addressed through tackling inequality, poverty and exclusion with poverty eradication as a main objective.

“Inequality in its various forms is expanding and deepening everywhere in Africa and Namibia is no exception. Income inequality undermines long-term growth; it foments political instability, and compromises social cohesion,” he said He noted that MDGs were adopted by governments without consultation with the people and that in the goals mainly remained marginal and not integrated into national development plans. Evaluations of goals have pointed out several shortcomings and lessons which Bandora pointed as an inadequate analysis behind some of the chosen goals in the first global development agenda. “MDGs lacked precedent and therefore, their implementation suffered from experimentation,” he added. Namibia is on target to achieve poverty reduction, universal primary education, gender equality, empowering women, HIV/AIDS, TB, malaria, Environmental sustainability as well as the global partnership for development targets, despite concerns of growing income inequality is undermining efforts in reducing poverty. Like the former MDGs the new goals will run from 2015 to 2030.The new goals hope to strengthen the means of implementation and revitalise global partnership for sustainable development. The goals will include enablers and cross-cutting issues of Finance, Technology, Capacity building and Trade as well as Systemic issues of Policy and Institutional coherence, Partnerships, Data, monitoring and accountability for results. As well as promote sustained, inclusive and sustainable economic growth, full and productive employment and decent work for all and build resilient infrastructure, promote inclusive and sustainable industrialization and foster innovation.

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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.