Foreign investors are frequently prone to basing decisions on their perception of a market, in the case of the Africa, these often lead to misconceptions such as a reliance on aid to improve its development, instead of active investments and collaboration.
Despite some strong business ties between foreign businesses and the continent, misunderstandings still surround Africa’s prospects. Business decisions are often based on perceptions of risks and challenges. Investors who are risk-averse will prioritise these aspects when considering any investment, with negative stereotypes about the continent often preventing investors seeing the ever increasing opportunities.
Sindiso Ngwenya, Head of the Common Market for Eastern and Southern Africa (COMESA), states: “Nations such as Rwanda, South Africa and Kenya position Africa as a viable investment prospect. As more nations follow suit, the continent will be on the cusp of becoming both an economic and technological hub for investment.”
Paul Sinclair, the Global African Investment Summit COMESA & Government of Rwanda (TGAIS-COMESA Rwanda) organising committee member, comments: “Rwanda is actively changing opinions with its actions to improve its industrial, agricultural and social infrastructure. Heavy investment in Rwanda’s information and communications technology has been crucial to helping the nation spearhead their long term growth strategies, allowing it to become a place of interest for investors.
“Investment opportunities in Africa are particularly strong due to its potential consumer base, along with the high adoption rate of various technological devices, such as smartphones and the Internet.”
Francis Gatare, CEO of Rwanda Development Board (RDB), comments: “Africa’s growing appeal amongst forward-thinking investors has made it less reliant on international aid. With nations like Rwanda becoming a hub of enterprise development, pioneering initiatives by businesses are changing the game and creating attractive prospects for investment.
“Other nations are also making an active effort to enact business-friendly policies and tax incentives in order to attract investors overseas. The Global African Investment Summit – COMESA & Government of Rwanda will be a prime example of just what Africa can do. The event will be a unique opportunity to forge partnerships and make investment a core element to achieving our socio-economic development goals.”