Africa gets new zone
Africa got a new zone approved at the Q1PB-2019/32 held in Astana, Kazakhstan. The new zonal structure now awaits ratification by the General Assembly.
Kenya is currently in Zone 4.2 the same as Egypt who can be considered to be an African chess powerhouse. Kenya’s new zone is 4.4 with East African countries and Madagascar. Madagascar will most likely be the dominant power in the new Zone 4.4 where Kenya is.
IM Fy Antenaina Rakotomaharo of Madagascar will be Zone 4.4 highest ranked player at 2409. IM Arthur Ssegwanyi of Uganda will the second highest ranked player at 2361.
Africa will now possibly get five slots for the World Cup as compared to only 4 in the past.
The revised zone designation is valid from 1st June 2019 and will be as follows:
Benin, Guinea, Niger and Guinea Bissau are not yet members of FIDE but will join up with Zone 4.2.
Congo and Chad are also not yet members of FIDE. They will join up with Zone 4.3.
Western Sahara is a disputed region and hence does not feature in FIDE’s agenda.
Zone 4.1 – Northern Africa
Algeria, Egypt, Libya, Mauritania, Tunisia and Morocco.
Zone 4.2 – West Africa
Burkina Faso, Cape Verde, Cote d’Ivoire, Gambia, Ghana, Liberia, Mali, Nigeria, Senegal, Sierra Leone and Togo.
Pending Members: Benin, Guinea, Guinea Bissau and Niger.
Zone 4.3 – Central Africa
Burundi, Cameroon, Central African Republic, Democratic Republic of Congo, Equatorial Guinea, Gabon, and Sao Tome & Principe.
Pending Members: Chad and Republic of Congo (Congo Brazzaville).
Zone 4.4 – Eastern Africa
Comoros, Djibouti, Eritrea, Ethiopia, Kenya, Madagascar, Mauritius, Rwanda, Seychelles, Somalia, South Sudan, Sudan, Tanzania and Uganda.
Zone 4.5 – Southern Africa
Angola, Botswana, Lesotho, Malawi, Mozambique, Namibia, South Africa, Swaziland, Zambia and Zimbabwe.