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SSA news through Dec. 8

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SSA news through Dec. 8

EAST AFRICA

* Banks in Kenya will be required to hold capital consistent with their risk profiles and business plans, Business Daily Africa reported. The requirement will come into effect in April 2017.

* Kenya's central bank has started considering other ways to recapitalize Chase Bank (Kenya) Ltd. after some potential investors dropped their bids, Africa Review reported.

* Kenya's central bank and the Kenya Deposit Insurance Corp. plan to appeal a high court decision barring them from taking steps that would lead to Imperial Bank Ltd.'s liquidation, until all options to revive the bank have been considered, The Star reported.

* Meanwhile, a top official at Kenya's central bank may have shared confidential information about Equity Bank (Kenya) Ltd. parent Equity Group Holdings Ltd.'s expansion plans into Rwanda and Tanzania to an executive at failed Imperial Bank, raising questions about the central bank's integrity, The Standard reported.

* Central Bank of Kenya Chairman Mohammed Nyaoga is under fire for receiving 6 million shillings as a retainer last year even though the board did not hold a single meeting due to a lack of directors to form a quorum, Business Daily Africa wrote. Kenyan President Uhuru Kenyatta named five new directors only last week.

* Listed Kenyan banks registered a 15.1% year-over-year growth in core third-quarter EPS, compared to growth of 9.7% in the same period in 2015, according to a study by Cytonn Investments.

* Chicago-based fund manager Equator Capital Partners LLC injected 600 million Kenyan shillings into Jamii Bora Bank Ltd., Daily Nation reported. Equator Capital Partners' international fund ShoreCap II now owns more than 15% of the Kenyan bank.

* Kenyan lender First Community Bank Ltd. laid off 106 employees, a third of its workforce, as part of the company's cost-cutting measures, Business Daily Africa reported.

* Tanzania's finance and planning ministry said the government plans to issue the country's first eurobond in fiscal year 2017-2018, Reuters reported. The issuance has been delayed several times as the country sought a sovereign credit rating.

WEST AFRICA

* The Bank of Ghana will present to its board of directors its final report on proposed minimum capital requirements for banks by year-end, Citi Business News reported. Ghanaian lenders are required to hold at least 120 million cedis in capital, but some observers predict that it may increase to more than 300 million cedis.

* With about a third of the votes counted, partial poll results of Ghana's Dec. 7 presidential race showed opposition leader Nana Akufo-Addo leading with 57% of the votes with ballots counted in 80 of the 275 constituencies, while incumbent John Mahama has 40.8% of the votes, Bloomberg News reported.

* Central Bank of Nigeria Governor Godwin Emefiele said increased adoption of digital financial services could lead to three million new jobs by 2025, ThisDay reported. Going digital would also reduce financial firms' cost of providing services by up to 90% as compared to traditional banking.

* Bank of Industry Managing Director Waheed Olagunju opposed a Nigerian senate proposal to dissolve the bank and establish the National Development Bank of Nigeria, Daily Trust reported. Olagunju said a dissolution will not be in the best interest of the country.

* Union Bank of Nigeria Plc received shareholder approval to raise as much as 50 billion naira through a rights issue, Nigeria Today reported.

* A business plan aimed at reviving Caixa Geral de Depósitos SA's fortunes sees the bank bolstering its presence in Cape Verde, contrary to rumors that the Portuguese lender could sell its Banco Interatlântico S.A.R.L. unit, Expresso das Ilhas reported.

* French insurer Euler Hermes Group SA is set to soon begin its activities in Togo, where the business environment has improved, Financial Afrik reported.

SOUTHERN AND CENTRAL AFRICA

* Angolan President José Eduardo dos Santos will not run for re-election in 2017, Reuters reported. Dos Santos, who has run Angola since 1979, proposed Defense Minister Joao Lourenco as his successor, a recommendation endorsed by the ruling MPLA party.

* Banco de Comércio e Indústria SA will be restructured following an ongoing shake-up at Banco de Poupança e Crédito SA, Angolan central bank chief Valter Filipe said, adding that the bank restructurings and an overhaul at the anti-money laundering Financial Information Unit are part of efforts to raise financial sector standards, Lusa wrote.

* FirstRand Ltd. said in court papers that it closed the bank accounts of Oakbay Investments, controlled by the controversial Gupta family, earlier this year over suspicions of money laundering and other illegal activities, Reuters reported.

* South Africa is poised to have two stock exchanges as the Johannesburg Stock Exchange dropped its appeal against the awarding of a license to 4 Africa Exchange, according to CAJ News.

* Mozambique's central bank appointed Deloitte's João Machado to lead a committee charged with liquidating failed lender Nosso Banco, Jornal Notícias and O País reported. Separately, the regulator established a committee tasked with managing the sale or recapitalization of Moza Banco SA, which was put under control of the monetary authority in September, O País and Jornal Notícias reported.

* Mozambique sees state spending exceeding revenue by one-third in 2017 and plans to cover the shortfall with domestic and international borrowing, Reuters cited Finance Minister Adriano Maleiane as saying.

* Zimbabwean Finance Minister Patrick Chinamasa said the country expects a widening of this year's fiscal budget deficit to $1.18 billion, nearly 8x higher than projected a year ago, Reuters reported. Meanwhile, Standard Chartered Plc confirmed that it will participate in the proposed debt resolution plan for Zimbabwe, The Financial Gazette reported.

* Stanbic Bank Zimbabwe Ltd. achieved the 2020 capital requirement of $100 million set by Zimbabwe's central bank for commercial banks operating in the country, The Chronicle reported.

* Namibia's central bank kept its benchmark lending rate at 7%, saying it was appropriate to support economic growth, Reuters reported.

* The IMF Executive Board approved an extension of an extended credit facility arrangement for Malawi to June 30, 2017, giving Malawian authorities additional time to achieve the program's objectives.

* BNP Paribas SA is still "far" from selling a 47% stake in Banque Internationale pour le Commerce et l'Industrie du Gabon, Jeune Afrique wrote. The Gabonese bank wants a French or international bank as a buyer.

Helen Popper and Sophie Davies contributed to this report.