The Africa Report: 20 November

EWN’s Africa Correspondent Jean-Jacques Cornish reports on the day’s top African news

An African Child Policy Forum reports states that Africa, as a place for children to grow up, has improved. Picture: Vumani Mkhize/EWN.

THE HIGH COST OF CLIMATE CHANGE MITIGATION IN AFRICA

United Nations (UN) climate talks have been told Africa will need between $200 billion and $350 billion a year by 2070 to mitigate climate change effects.

The $200 billion figure is the best-case scenario and is dependent on the success of the global deal of reducing global warming by 2°C by 2015.

However, regardless of the goal being met, malnourishment in Africa is on the increase.

If the goal is missed, the loss of lives with increase dramatically and mitigating climate change effects in order to reserve this will then cost the higher figure of $350 billion.

The climate talks have been ongoing in Warsaw where members of the UN Environment Programme are working toward achieving the 2015 goal.

This includes pressing the more economically powerful nations to make good on their 2009 promise of $100 billion a year to mitigate climate change which should be paid by 2020.

WELL-BEING OF AFRICAN CHILDREN IMPROVES

According to a report, Africa, as a place for children to grow up, has improved.

However, there remains a crying need for investment in health and education.

This is according to the African Child Policy Forum, an independent pan-African institution of policy research and dialogue on the African child.

The most "child-friendly" African nations are Mauritius, South Africa, and Tunisia who occupy the top three.

Of the list of 52 African countries, the worst performing are Chad, Eritrea, and Sao Tome and Principe.

Data on Somalia, the Western Sahara, and South Sudan was inadequate.

The report indicates that a larger GDP does not necessarily translate to being more child-friendly.

Countries like Namibia and Equatorial Guinea have sufficiently larger GDPs than the likes of Malawi and Rwanda, but are spending less on education and health.

Overall though, the conditions in Africa are improving and are better-suited to the wellbeing of young children.

UN RECOMMITS TO ANTI-PIRACY FIGHT

The UN has recommitted itself to the anti-piracy fight.

This affirmation from the UN Security Council (UNSC) coincides with the reported decline of piracy in Somalia.

The International Maritime Bureau - a specialised division of the International Criminal Court's Commercial Crime Services - has reported an impressive decrease in piracy since 2011.

In 2011, there were 237 incidents of piracy, while in 2012 only 75.

To date, 2013 has only witnessed 11.

However, despite the decrease, the UNSC has expressed concern regarding the $400 million made by pirates in ransom money which is used to recruit new members and purchase arms.

The cost of piracy to world trade stands at $18 billion per annum, mostly from the rising cost of security.