Can African governments head off a sustained spike in the spread of COVID-19 and recover economically in 2021? How will the Biden administration engage the continent? Will companies implement more effective due diligence efforts in their supply chains to prevent human rights abuses? What impact will efforts to battle corruption and mitigate climate change have in the coming year? Covington’s Africa Practice offers insights on these questions and other key issues that will define 2021 on the continent.

COVID-19 Recovery: Since Africa confirmed its first COVID-19 case in February 2020, every country has been affected, leading to over 100 million cases and two million deaths. The World Health Organization applauded African governments for their swift responses which curtailed wide-spread infections but contributed to the region’s first economic recession in twenty-five years. Over the last month, Africa has been hit hard by a second wave of COVID-19. Daily case rates have increased to almost twice the rates in July and August 2020, prompting South Africa, among other nations, to re-impose severe measures aimed at preventing deaths.
Continue Reading Top Issues to Watch in Africa: 2021

On August 15, 2020, the Minister of Cooperative Governance and Traditional Affairs (COGTA) announced the extension of the national state of disaster. The national state of disaster was declared under Government Gazette No 43096 of 15 March 2020 (and extended by Government Gazette Nos 646 of June 5, 2020 and 765 of July 13, 2020), from August 15, 2020 to September 15, 2020. The reason for the extension of the national state of disaster is linked to the need “to continue augmenting the existing legislation and contingency arrangements undertaken by organs of state to address the impact of the disaster”. On the same day, President Cyril Ramaphosa announced a decision to transition the country from Alert Level 3 to Alert Level 2 of the Risk Adjusted Strategy, following consultation with the National Coronavirus Command Council, Cabinet and the President’s Coordinating Council.

Government Gazette No. 43620 sets out the revised restrictions that will govern this period effective 00H01 on August 18, 2020. The following restrictions have been lifted:
Continue Reading South Africa Eases COVID-19 Restrictions with the Transition to Alert Level 2

If COVID-19 spreads across Africa, it would not only be a human catastrophe for the continent, but one that threatens the Northern Hemisphere with future outbreaks and further human and economic losses. What is true in the United States, where people in poor and minority neighborhoods are dying in disproportionate numbers, is true for the

Earlier this week, the Corporate Council on Africa’s Health Working Group hosted a World Bank presentation of The Global Financing Facility (GFF), a broad $4 billion facility that aims to promote reproductive, maternal, newborn, child and adolescent health (RMNCAH) in low- and middle-income countries.  The GFF–which was announced in September 2014 and currently consists

Well-known as a destination for experiencing some of the world’s most breathtaking natural assets, the Sub-Saharan African region is making progress in staking a larger claim to the multibillion dollar medical tourism industry and is the fastest growing region for wellness tourism.  Strategic trade and investment policies have played a significant role in these advancements.

On December 9, 2014, Nigerian President Goodluck Jonathan signed into law the National Health Bill, which was approved by the Nigerian Senate earlier this year.  The new law is intended to provide a framework for the regulation, development, and management of a national health system in Nigeria.

What the Act does

The National Health Act

The U.S. Department of Health and Human Services (“HHS”) published a declaration today under the Public Readiness and Emergency Preparedness (“PREP”) Act covering activities relating to three Ebola vaccine candidates that are currently in development.  The declaration went into effect on December 3, 2014 and extends liability protection to manufacturers, distributors, program planners, and qualified

IBM and Metropolitan Health–one of South Africa’s largest financial services and healthcare companies–recently announced Africa’s first commercial application of IBM’s Watson Engagement Advisor (“Watson”).  Watson is a potentially revolutionary cognitive computing application that can “comprehend” a question posed to it in natural language, process relevant data equivalent to about one million books, and provide a