Uncertainty over recent changes to Tanzania’s mining laws and regulations has created an increasingly unpredictable operating environment within the country’s mining sector. While many western companies already operating in Tanzania remain reluctant to commit their future to such an uncertainty, China is exploiting emerging opportunities to gain entry into the country’s lucrative mining sector.
While police corruption is not an unknown phenomenon in Nigeria, its effects on foreign investment can be underestimated. Not only does police corruption have the potential to generate unforeseen business costs – through the use of bribes and extortion – but it also compromises the police’s ability to address threats, undermining the country’s security environment. This inevitably further damages Nigeria’s efforts to position itself as an attractive investment environment.
As uncertainty prevails over whether President Joseph Kabila will seek an unconstitutional third term in office, the DRC’s political opposition at last appears to be making attempts to present a united challenge to his rule. The prospect of the DRC’s political opposition fielding a single unity candidate in the upcoming elections has raised the possibility of the country witnessing a change in government in December 2018.
The DRC’s Minister of Foreign Affairs, Léonard She Okitundu, has become the face and mouthpiece of the Kabila regime on the international stage. A trusted Kabila confidante, Okitundu has the difficult job of depicting the Kabila regime as a capable and competent ally to the international community.
Endemic corruption has long rendered the Nigerian Ports Authority (NPA) ineffective in its role as governor and operator of Nigeria’s maritime ports, deterring investment and limiting economic development. However, the appointment of Hadiza Bala-Usman to head the critical parastatal promises an end to this trend, as President Muhammadu Buhari’s war against corruption turns to the country’s ports.
Ghana’s inviting investment climate, and apparent commitment to the long-term development of its nascent tourism sector, is making the hospitality sector an attractive target for hotel investors looking to expand into Africa. While progress is being made, challenges remain as Ghana continues to struggle with unnecessary bureaucracy, excessive regulation and infrastructural deficiencies.
While still not considered one of Ghana’s dominant economic sectors, Ghana’s new NPP administration appears to be making concerted efforts to prop the country’s tourism sector. Over the past 12 months the government has introduced a number of key initiatives to open up the country’s tourism sector to private investment and turn the country into a leisure tourism destination.
As both Russia and the DRC continue to suffer from the effects of international sanctions, an uptick in high-level diplomatic meetings between Congolese and Russian officials appears to suggest a mutual desire to develop the two countries’ nascent relationship.
Although the majority of trade in Africa is by sea, the continent’s ports are performing far below their potential in terms of efficiency. To rectify this imbalance, there is an ongoing trend towards increased private sector participation, and the transition from the public service port to a landlord port model.
The political elite of the largest ethnic group in Nigeria, the Hausa-Fulani, have retained effective control over Nigerian politics for decades. This has largely been accomplished through their occupation of command positions within government. While this dominance appears to have been cemented under President Buhari, there is no indication that it will weaken in the foreseeable future
As public confidence and trust in Nigeria’s traditional two dominant parties remains low, it is looking increasingly likely that a third political party will emerge as a real competitor in the coming months. By capitalising on the public’s demand for an alternative choice, a third political party has the potential to cause a real upset in 2019.
Belgian interests are being targeted by the DRC government in a series of apparent retaliatory attacks following Brussels’ decision to reallocate funding that was intended for the central government to humanitarian NGOs. While Kinshasa’s actions may be downplayed as political grandstanding, there are concerns that they will inevitably impact the foreign business environment.