The survey polled participants of previous editions of the Global Business Forum Africa (GBF Africa), including traders and investors, and explored their insights and views on various aspects of investment across the continent. The findings shed light on investment trends in Africa that will be discussed at the forthcoming Global Business Forum Africa (GBF Africa 2021), which is being organised by Dubai Chamber and Expo 2020 Dubai.
The high-level event will take place on 13th and 14th October, 2021, at Expo 2020 Dubai under the patronage of His Highness Sheikh Mohammed bin Rashid Al Maktoum, Vice President, Prime Minister and Ruler of Dubai.
The survey found that 61 percent of respondents believed that agriculture represented the most lucrative area for investment in the sub-Saharan region of Africa, followed by telecommunications (45 percent).
In addition, cash was the preferred option for investment among 61 percent of respondents, followed by commodities (48 percent), hedge and private equity funds (42 percent), bonds (32 percent), stocks (24 percent), mutual funds (18 percent) and Exchange Traded Funds (15 percent).
The abundance of natural resources was the factor identified as the one that most positively impacts investment opportunities ahead of economic growth, demographics, domestic markets, a large low-cost labour force and the political and social environment.
Of the 10 sub-Saharan countries included in the survey, Ghana was identified as the most favourable destination for investment, with 63 percent of respondents highlighting the country. This was followed by 62 percent who voted for Nigeria as the most promising destination.
Ghana also scored highly as the sub-Saharan African country that was the easiest to do business in terms of foreign direct investment, tying with Rwanda at 53 percent.
Transparent business regulations and a legal framework were most likely to boost trade relations between Africa and the Gulf Cooperation Council, with 66 percent of respondents highlighting these factors. Internet of Things and artificial intelligence were regarded as offering the most investment potential in a post-pandemic world, followed by blockchain, drones, virtual reality, robotics, 3D printing and augmented reality.
The GBF Africa 2021 at Expo 2020 Dubai will be structured around three pillars: Reset, Restore and Definers, with the first exploring new ways that African countries can work together to deliver on the promise of the African Continental Free Trade Area (AfCFTA), while the second focuses on models for innovative and sustainable trade.
The third assesses the resilience of the continent’s emerging businesses and the role of government in providing an enabling infrastructure for commerce and trade.
As the Official Business Partner to Expo 2020 Dubai, the Dubai Chamber is running a series of commerce and trade initiatives throughout the six months of the event, including three of its flagship global business forums, The GBF Africa, GBF Latin America and the inaugural GBF ASEAN, in addition to the 12th World Chambers Congress.