4 African Business February 2021
Business Intelligence News
Steinmetz found guilty of corruption and forgery
Pharma giants GSK and Novartis have launched a research project investigating how genetic diversity across different African regions might affect responses to drug therapeutics. The Project Africa Genomic Research Approach for Diversity and Optimising Therapeutics (GRADIENT), funded with $3.6m over five years, is calling on African researchers to submit research proposals on the relevance of African genetic diversity to the treatment of malaria and tuberculosis.
Israeli diamond trader Benny Steinmetz has been sentenced to fi ve years in jail and fi ned $56m after a Swiss court found him guilty of corruption and forgery. Steinmetz and two other defendants were accused of paying or arranging $10m in bribes between 2006 and 2010 to Mamadie Touré, one of the wives of the former Guinean President Lansana Conté, to obtain exploration permits for iron ore in the Simandou region and forging documents to cover it up through shell companies and bank accounts. Steinmetz said he will appeal the verdict.
Research project investigates role of genetics in treatment of malaria and TB
Mauritius and Morocco join Bloomberg African Bond Indices
Mauritius and Morocco have joined eight African countries as part of the AFMI Bloomberg African Bond Indices (ABABI), which provide investors with a tool to measure and track the performance of Africa’s local bond markets. The indices are administered by the African Development Bank and calculated by the global index provider and media giant Bloomberg. They were launched in 2015 to deepen debt markets across the continent.
Pfizer appoints new regional president as vaccine rolls out
US pharma company Pfi zer has appointed Patrick van der Loo as regional president for Africa and the Middle East. Van der Loo, who has managed some of the fi rm’s largest therapeutic areas in cardiovascular and neuroscience, will lead commercial operations in the region to bring scientifi c breakthroughs in vaccines, oncology, rare diseases, internal medicine, hospitals, and infl ammation and immunology. The appointment comes as the fi rm rolls out the Pfi zerBioNTech Covid-19 vaccine.
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