According to Michel BÃ©zy; in the last decade, things have been changing in Africa. Better governance, investments by Eastern countries, the end of wars, and the resolution of the debt crisis have all resulted in significant progress in supporting businesses and the resulting maturation of the business climate.
An interesting interactive graphic “The New Gold Rush” recently published by The Wall Street Journal shows how the rise of a new consumer class is shifting the balance in Africa.
You will find more than 9 million search results from Google by typing “investing in Africa.” But beyond interesting anecdotes many noteworthy papers and books have been published on the subject of “investing in Africa” in the recent years, including:
1. Paul Collier, author of the influential book, “The Bottom Billion,”Â published “Now’s the Time to Invest in Africa“Â in Harvard Business Review in 2009.
2. The McKinsey report Lions on the Move notes:Â “Today the rate of return on foreign investment in Africa is higher than in any other developing region”.
3. The annual flow of foreign direct investment (FDI) into Africa in 2008 increased to $62 billion, from $9 billion in 2000.
4. Wal-Mart StoresÂ announced a cash offer of over 2 billionÂ USDÂ for a majority stake in the South African retail companyÂ MassmartÂ Holdings,Â one of South Africa’s biggest retailers.
5. The CEO of the Rwanda Development Board makes the case for Rwanda in the Independent, a local media: Rwanda is now open for business.
6. MyÂ friend Ryan Allis, CEO of iContact,Â speaks about Why invest In Africa? in his Dare Mighty Things blog and provides good links for investments in Africa.
Ghana is also named amongst 17 other countries in Steven Radelet’s book: Emerging Africa – 17 Countries Are Leading The Way which provides a more in depth view of the success of some countries tagged as Emerging Countries. From; Growth, Governance and Good News in Africa (Next billion);
These countries (including Ghana) are putting behind them the conflict, stagnation, and dictatorships of the past and replacing them with steady economic growth, deepening democracy, improved governance, and decreased poverty.
Five fundamental changes are at work:
(1) more democratic and accountable governments;
(2) more sensible economic policies;
(3) the end of the debt crisis and changing relationships with donors;
(4) the spread of new technologies; and
(5) the emergence of a new generation of policymakers, activists, and business leaders.
The 17 Emerging Countries are: Botswana, Burkina Faso, Cape Verde, Ethiopia, Ghana, Lesotho, Mali, Mauritius, Mozambique, Namibia, Rwanda, Sao Tome & Principe, Seychelles, South Africa, Tanzania, Uganda, and Zambia.
Question: Why isn’t the oil exporting giants; Angola and Nigeria not included in this list?
- China’s relationship with Africa: Scary? Or awesome? (one.org)
- CHART OF THE DAY: The Next 20 Years Will Be A Boom Time For Africa (businessinsider.com)
- Emerging Markets Have Emerged: Next Stop for Some Companies the Global Fortune 500? (fastcompany.com)