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Senegal’s reforms and red carpets


Africa Report

November 27, 2012

Senegal’s President Macky Sall has slashed government spending to finance new infrastructure projects.

Faced with an audit of Wade-era projects, the opposition says he is playing political games. Dakar has been rolling out the red carpet in recent weeks.

Elected in March on a reform ticket, President Macky Sall is in demand as an interlocutor – whether it is by the World Bank, the UN or France’s President François Hollande, who stopped in Dakar on 12 October en route to his more controversial landing in Kinshasa for the Francophonie summit.

This month, the Mo Ibrahim Foundation is holding its annual development conference in Dakar to salute Senegal’s political achievements.

Dakar’s National Assembly gave Hollande the chance to set out his Africa policy, which he insisted was non-interventionist and non-paternalistic.

Hollande seized the chance for a tête à tête with Sall, seeking his help for the regional effort to tackle the worsening in- security in Mali.

Senegal’s troops, alongside Ghana’s, are regarded as the most professional in the region.

But Sall has plenty of local problems to tackle – such as the perennial rainy-season flooding.

The government’s failure to invest in flood defences was one of the reasons for voters turning against former President Abdoulaye Wade.

In September, Macky Sall pushed through a bill to abolish the Senate, the second chamber in the National Assembly.

He promised that the 767bn CFA francs ($1.5bn) would be used to finance a 10-year plan for effective flood defences, storm drainage and sanitation.

Opponents to Sall’s plan accuse him of partisan plotting.

The Senate was dominated by members of Wade’s [I]Parti Démocratique Sénégalais[/I].

But Sall’s supporters insist the plan reflects the need to cut ballooning government overheads inherited from the Wade era.

The Sall government aims to cut the budget deficit from current levels of 7.4% of gross domestic product down to 4% by 2015.

So far, Sall has closed 59 moribund state institutions, banned first-class travel for civil servants and is selling a presidential jet.

To promote accountability, Sall has published details of all official salaries, declared his own assets and promised to cut salaries at state-run companies to below 5m CFA francs per month.

“Humility, sobriety and rigour should govern our politics,” Sall told The Africa Report’s sister magazine Jeune Afrique after his election.

“I assure you that there will be a profound break from the practices that were in force under my predecessor.”

The new government has quickly launched audits of government departments and projects for evidence of illicit disbursements.

This includes projects run by Wade’s son Karim, such as the 650bn CFA franc energy crisis programme, Plan Takkal.

Britain, France and the United States have pledged cooperation in tracking down stolen money.

Sall rejects claims of political vindictiveness: “The only thing that interests us is that the errors of the past don’t repeat themselves,” he said.

The courts will take cases identified by the audit.

His promise to cut the presidential term from seven to five years with immediate effect won local and international plaudits, as did his agreement with the African Union to set up a special tribunal for Chad’s ex-leader Hissène Habré, in exile in Senegal since 1990.

SENEGAL: Overfishing – culprits and consequences


 

IRIN

DAKAR, 18 July 2012 (IRIN) – Senegal stopped renewing agreements allowing European fishing vessels in its waters in 2006, but now an expanding artisanal fleet and local industrial boats enjoying exclusivity under lax regulations are being blamed for malpractice and degrading the country’s main economic and food resource.

“In terms of environmental degradation, the responsibility is shared. Artisanal fishermen are responsible for habitat destruction. Although industrial vessels and foreign ships are often blamed, artisanal fishermen contribute hugely to the disappearance of species,” said Moustapha Thiam, the director of Senegal’s Maritime Fishing Authority, a Fisheries Ministry department.

Foreign industrial trawlers are often criticized for overfishing off the West African coast, where some governments are also accused of issuing unregulated licences that overlook the consequences to local economies and livelihoods.

Industrial fishing has really reduced. Small-scale fishing is quite dynamic,” Thiam told IRIN. Of the 409,429 metric tonnes of fish caught in 2010, artisanal fishermen contributed 370,448 tonnes, according to the Maritime Fishing Authority.

Fishing is Senegal’s foremost economic activity, employing around 15 percent of the workforce – about 600,000 people – and is the main foreign currency earner. Local consumption is 28kg per person per year, twice the world average, and 75 percent of protein in the diet comes from fish.

The UN Food and Agriculture Organization (FAO) estimates that there were around 16,000 small fishing boats in Senegal in 2011, compared to about 5,000 in 1982. [Situation de l’immatriculation des embarcations de type artisanal]

“It is the sector with the biggest socio-economic impact locally,” said Ahmed Diamé, a Greenpeace Africa oceans campaigner. “Among the problems are the use of the wrong net size and dynamite… With free access to the resource, [artisanal] fishing has significantly increased. We have noted a reduction in catches since 2000. There is also a decline in the quality of fish caught – they are smaller,” he noted.

To boost the sector, the government subsidizes fuel and equipment for the local fishermen. “What needs to be revised is the quest for short-term profit. This is what drives the sector and what kills it. There is free access to the resource because fishing is not regulated,” said Papa Gora Ndiaye, secretary general of West Africa Fishing Policy Network (REPAO), a regional NGO.

“When we were kids, we could see big fish caught. But nowadays, we need to go very far to catch anything,” said Yakhya, a fisherman in Soumbédioune, one of the fishing ports along the shores of Senegal’s seaside capital, Dakar.

In the days when local boatmen navigated by instinct, returning to a rich spot happened by chance. “There is no more mystery. When I was young, if you found a good spot, it could take a few days to find it again,” said retired fisherman Papa Nguer. “Now all the boats have GPS [global positioning system].”

The government is trying to regulate the sector, registering and controlling the licences issued to local fishermen, but critics argue that these measures are not enough in a country where fishing is the main source of income for millions.

“The state has to decide to reduce the fishing capacity. It is useless to have fishing permits if the fishing fleet is untouched,” said Gaoussou Guèye, the head of a local association for responsible artisanal fishing.

“There are subsistence and economic issues at stake. The problem is to control without generating social catastrophes,” said Captain Djibril Diawara, the head of operations at the Fishing Monitoring and Protection Authority (DSPM).

Few industrial vessels have ventured into territorial waters since Dakar stopped renewing Fishing Partnership Agreements with the European Union. Now, the industrial fishing fleet is mainly local, others in joint venture with Europeans and there have been accusations of corruption and favouritism.

Authorities say the fleet is mostly old, poses environmental risks and often fishes in protected areas. The DSPM has six boats, none of which can reach the high seas, a plane that has been under repair for two years, and a staff of 150.

“It is an aging fleet. Most boats are more than 30 years old, which means they have more destructive fishing practices,” said the Maritime Fishing Department’s Thiam.

With the support of a programme funded by the World Bank, the government plans to reduce the number of artisanal boats by 25 percent and ground the old industrial fishing fleet, Thiam said.

Implementing the plan will be arduous. “Suggesting that the state should stop subsidizing fishermen to reduce fishing capacity raises questions about the risk of fish becoming more expensive for the Senegalese people,” said Greenpeace’s Diamé.

”Experts call for sustainable fishing and environmental protection. “The industry should be bolstered, providing it with means to use the resources in a sustainable and profitable manner.” He called for the creation of marine reserves in the high seas where fishing is banned.

“Fishing and the number of fishermen should be reduced,” Guèye said. “Not everyone can be a fisherman or a fishmonger. There should be a fisheries management plan – we cannot have congestion,” he suggested.
“It is up to the government to set up these plans. It has the responsibility to manage the resources for the future generation.”

 

Senegal cancels fishing authorizations


AllAfrica.com

May 3rd, 2012

Press Release

PRESS RELEASE

Dakar, Senegal — Greenpeace welcomes the decision of the Senegalese government to cancel licenses of pelagic fishing vessels issued to 29 foreign trawlers from Russia, Comoros, Lithuania, Saint Vincent Grenadine and Belize.

“These kinds of licenses are a direct threat to employment and food security for millions of Senegalese who have been dependent on fishing for centuries,” says Raoul Monsembula, Oceans Campaigner, Greenpeace.

West Africa‘s fish stocks are severely pressured by over-exploitation, mainly by destructive high-tech Russian, Asian and European vessels that can in a single day capture, process, and freeze 200-250 tons of fish.

“This corresponds to the fish consumption by at least 9,000 Senegalese during afull year” (1) FAO 2007.

Greenpeace has, for the last 18 months, called for the cancellation of the licenses and less than a month ago, the Greenpeace ship Arctic Sunrise was patrolling the waters of Senegal and Mauritania to put the spotlight on the systematic plunder of West African waters by foreign vessels. “Most of the trawlers encountered by the Arctic Sunrise were European vessels or in some way linked to Europe, including Russia(2).

On 27 April, EU Fisheries ministers got together in Luxemburg to discuss the reform of EU fishing rules, known as the common fisheries policy (CFP), but failed to take necessary steps to tackle the excessive fleet capacity of the European fishing fleet. “The same week as the fisheries ministers failed to make progress on fisheries reform, the EU had to cancel the permits for its vessels in Mauritanian waters months before time simply because these giants had used up their quota in no time, says Pavel Klinckhamers, Oceans Campaigner of Greenpeace. “If European ministers really want to tackle the issue of a bloated fleet, they have to act now and choose sustainable, low impact fisheries,” he argues.

Greenpeace urges the government of Senegal to declare an emergency moratorium on the allocation of fishing licenses, as a sustainable policy has not yet been defined. Greenpeace also calls on European governments and fisheries ministers to support a new Common Fisheries Policy that tackles Europe’s bloated fleet by scrapping the most destructive and oversized vessels, including factory trawlers operating in the waters of developing countries (3).

1. Source FAO, 2007.

2. From15 February to 15 April 2012 Greenpeace completed an expedition in Senegal and Mauritania to highlight overfishing. A total of 71 vessels were observed and three out of four were found to have parent companies in either EU or other non-EU European countries. More than a third bore the flag of an EU country and another third were sailing under flags of convenience. In Senegal, as much as 90% of the vessels were in some way linked to Europe, mostly Eastern Europe, (including Russia) and in Mauritania, this was the case for 80%.

3. The European Common Fisheries Policy, CFP, is supposed to ensure sound and sustainable fisheries. The reality is that it has failed. The same extensive and destructive fishing fleet which has pushed Europe’s fish stocks to the brink now allows European fleets to hoover up fish form seas outside of Europe, including in West Africa. A full review of the CFP, which takes place every ten years, is currently under way and provides a unique chance to end overfishing by EU vessels, in and outside of Europe, and begin the transition to sustainable low-impact practices.

Wärtsilä to expand two power plants in Senegal


Two of the three Wärtsilä 16V32 diesel alterna...
Image via Wikipedia

PRESS RELEASE Reuters * is not responsible for the content in this press release. 

Tue Sep 27, 2011 3:01am EDT

Wärtsilä Corporation, Trade & Technical press release, 27 September 2011

Wärtsilä, a leading supplier of flexible power plants and services to the global power generation market, has been awarded the contracts to expand two existing power plants, delivered by Wärtsilä, in Senegal. These contracts, valued at nearly EUR 60 million, were signed with Senelec, the country’s public utility company.

Wärtsilä will supply turnkey extension solutions to two existing power plants. The Bel Air power plant was built in 2005 and the Kahone plant in 2006. Both facilities are powered by 18 cylinder Wärtsilä 46 engines, and are maintained and operated by Wärtsilä under a 15 year agreement signed in 2006. The extension projects will provide two additional 18 cylinder Wärtsilä 46 engines to each site, which will increase output with 34MW to reach a total of 102MW on each site.

“The main focus in all our discussions with the Senegalese authorities was the urgency of the situation. There was enormous pressure to come up with a solution that could quickly and efficiently alleviate the challenges relating to the nation’s rapidly increasing need for power. Senelec is already very familiar with the advantages of Wärtsilä’s proven technology and Smart Power Generation benefits. The reason for Wärtsilä being awarded this contract was our ability to engineer, deliver and construct these extensions to two power plants in just 12 months,” says Tony van Velzen, Regional Director, Africa, Wärtsilä Power Plants.

Wärtsilä has a leading position in supplying flexible power plants to West Africa. In Senegal alone, Wärtsilä has already supplied 14 power plants with a combined electrical output of more than 220MW.

Wärtsilä West Africa is headquartered in Dakar and also has facilities in Conakry, Guinea and Lomé, Togo. Altogether 125 persons are employed to serve customers throughout the region. Approximately half of these are dedicated to supplying Operations and Maintenance services that ensure the contracted power plants are run with maximum efficiency.

Smart Power Generation

Wärtsilä has pioneered a Smart Power Generation approach to meeting the future needs of the global energy market. In order to provide a reliable and secure delivery of electricity and to balance supply with demand, flexibility in fuel choice and operational requirements is essential. Wärtsilä is a market leader in providing flexible, efficient, and dynamic power generating capacity.

As at the end of 2010, Wärtsilä had delivered 4500 power plants to 168 countries, providing a total of over 47 GW of energy capacity.

Link to picture of Kahone Power Plant in Senegal

Read more:
Wärtsilä oil power plants
Oil engines at Wärtsilä

For further information please contact:

Tony van Velzen

Regional Director, Africa
Wärtsilä Power Plants
Tel: +31 6 5345 2008
tony.vanvelzen@wartsila.com

Mirja-Maija Santala
Media Manager
Wärtsilä Corporation
Tel. +358 (0)400 793 827
mirja-maija.santala@wartsila.com

Wärtsilä in brief:
Wärtsilä is a global leader in complete lifecycle power solutions for the marine and energy markets. By emphasising technological innovation and total efficiency, Wärtsilä maximises the environmental and economic performance of the vessels and power plants of its customers. In 2010, Wärtsilä’s net sales totalled EUR 4.6 billion with more than 17,500 employees. The company has operations in 160 locations in 70 countries around the world. Wärtsilä is listed on the NASDAQ OMX Helsinki, Finland.


This announcement is distributed by Thomson Reuterson behalf of Thomson Reuters clients.The owner of this announcement warrants that:
(i) the releases contained herein are protected by copyright and other applicable laws; and
(ii) they are solely responsible for the content, accuracy and originality of the
information contained therein.Source: Wärtsilä Oyj Abp via Thomson Reuters ONE

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