While it is widely agreed that the illicit practice of trade misinvoicing is costing African countries billions of dollars a year, the scale of the issue remains to be debated. It can be argued that the potentially over exaggerated estimates of misinvoicing in Africa being quoted by highly-respected and influential international institutions may in some cases be counterproductive, adversely affecting their investment environments.
Considered a key industry in Nigeria’s economy, the mobile telecoms sector has recently enjoyed a period of unprecedented growth. Yet, competition is fierce, and the mobile segment remains largely controlled by just four operators – all of whom have attracted allegations of fraudulent behaviour in an attempt to maintain their influential positions in the market.
Ghana’s extensive renewable energy resources are attracting increased attention from investors around the world. However, despite a sizeable market offering that holds significant long-term growth prospects, Ghana’s renewable energy sector is still relatively underdeveloped, and continues to suffer from weak and unclear policies and regulations.
The liberalisation of the DRC’s insurance sector, spearheaded by legislation opening the market to international players, is attracting increased attention. However, despite a sizeable market offering that holds the promise of growth prospects, the country’s challenging operating environment may serve to deter potential investors. As with any regulatory overhaul, teething issues are expected.
Wildlife poaching and trafficking in Sub-Saharan Africa is a growing trend, facilitated by an environment characterised by corrupt officials and political elite, and well-established local and regional criminal networks. Apart for the obvious environmental and social costs, this illicit trade has a direct bearing on the reputation of foreign investors in the region.
Over the next weeks Shadow Governance Intel will be releasing analysis that looking at China’s evolving interests in Africa. This will culminate in the release of a Report (available in the Store) that explores China’s burgeoning relationship with the Continent. The report, available in early October, details China’s key commercial actors in Africa, highlighting the trajectory of the main trends in this complex relationship.
Sonangol’s complex relationship with the Presidential office has created a de facto parallel government. Over the years it has operated outwith the traditional remit of a national oil company, exercising undue political and economic influence to the benefit of a select few. However, a combination of low global oil prices and restructuring will likely serve to finally curb its influence.
Under pressure to maintain Ethiopia’s economic growth, the government is keen to attract increased investment in its nascent manufacturing sector. A growing consumer market, a stable economy, and a large and relatively cheap labour pool, is an equation that is bound to attract interest from companies across the globe.
Italian oil company Eni’s most significant natural gas discovery off the coast of Mozambique in 2011 has served to strengthen both economic and commercial relations between the two countries. With both keen to take advantage of the burgeoning relationship, Italian investments in Mozambique are only expected to increase over the coming years.
The Senate’s passing of the Petroleum Industry Governance Bill is a small, but significant, step towards the long-awaited restructuring of Nigeria’s troubled oil and gas industry. It is through the PIGB that the government hopes to open up the sector to more and better business opportunities through increased transparency, better accountability and clearer regulations.
In a matter of weeks, the introduction of three new laws has completely changed the legal and regulatory landscape of Tanzania’s extractives industry, risking the country’s reputation as one of Africa’s most attractive investment destinations. As Acacia has discovered, this emerging environment is not a welcome one.
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Nigeria has become one of Turkey’s most important providers of liquid natural gas (LNG), and with the LNG industry in both countries gaining increasing prominence, LNG trade between the two is likely to continue into the foreseeable future.