Author: Antonio Guerrero

NIGERIAN INBOUND INVESTMENT FRAMEWORK IMPROVING

By Antonio Guerrero

Nigerian President Goodluck Jonathan says his administration is reviewing industrial policies to encourage foreign companies exporting finished goods to Nigeria to instead manufacture them locally.

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New policies encourage local assembly of foreign goods

The president hopes investments in manufacturing and assembly plants will boost the nation’s economy and curb joblessness. Jonathan says the government is laying the groundwork by creating the infrastructure, implementing fiscal and monetary policies, and creating a regulatory regime that will make Nigeria more attractive for investors in the country’s industrial sector.

South Africa’s economy is seeing a slower-than-expected domestic recovery, prompting Business Unity South Africa, the country’s largest business organization, to issue a cautious outlook for 2012. BUSA, which warns that its projection may be further dampened by Europe’s debt crisis, predicts Africa’s largest economy will post 2012 GDP growth of 3%. That figure is lower than the official 3.4% projection. BUSA says the economy continues to underperform, with low credit demand, high unemployment, 80% manufacturing capacity utilization and 10% office vacancies. The group says public infrastructure investments could provide a “shock absorber.” BUSA suggests the Southern African Development Community organize a crisis session to discuss the potential impact of external shocks on the region.

A number of supranationals have joined forces to finance environmental programs in major African cities. The African Development Bank, Asian Development Bank, European Bank for Reconstruction and Development, Inter-American Development Bank and World Bank are trying to help cities mitigate climate change risk, using a common approach to assess risk, standardize greenhouse gas emissions and foster the creation of consistent climate finance options.

Stelios Haji-Ioannou, the airline entrepreneur who launched the UK’s easyJet low-frills airline, is partnering with UK’s Rubicon Diversified Investments to launch a low-cost carrier for Africa. The new carrier will be known as fastjet.com, targeting a growing African consumer base.