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South Korean products are used by millions of people on the African continent every day – from Samsung mobile phones to LG air conditioners to Hyundai and Kia cars. In fact, in this year’s Brand Africa 100 ranking of the most-admired brands on the continent, Samsung and LG featured in second and 10th places respectively.

Over the last 25 years, Côte d’Ivoire’s cashew production has seen exploding growth. In nearly 10 years, the Ivorian cashew crop has surged 154% from 280,000 MT in 2007 to 711,000 MT in 2017. In 2016, Côte d’Ivoire overtook India, the world’s largest cashew producer, as the world’s leading raw cashew nut (RCN) exporter, cementing its status as the leading RCN origin for Asian cashew processors.

For most casual observers, the prominent non-Western country active in Africa is China. Its Belt and Road Initiative and its active foreign investment in many African countries have highlighted its presence on the continent. The extent to which many commodity exporters are dependent on exports to China have created accusations of Chinese neo-colonisation of Africa. However, many of these observers have not noted an increasing Russian presence in Africa. This article therefore attempts to highlight the most recent initiatives by Russia to expand its presence and influence in the last investment frontier in the world, i.e. Africa.

Mozambique, which gained independence from Portugal in 1975, is home to a culturally diverse population of 29 million people. Before the Portuguese invasion in the sixteenth century, the region was an important trading centre for slaves, gold and ivory for Arabs and Persians. This trade was centred on the Island of Mozambique, which lies off northern Mozambique’s current borders. The country got its name from its first known ruler, a Muslim Arab emir named Mussa ibn Bique. The Portuguese started referring to the region as the “Lands of Mussa ibn Bique” and from there the name was simplified to Mozambique.

Source: How We Made it in Africa

The growing urban population in sub-Saharan Africa is rapidly driving up the demand for affordable housing in urban areas.

 

Khartoum, Capital of Sudan. Source: How We Made it in Africa

The United States has been imposing sanctions on Sudan since 1997 and listed it as one of the countries sponsoring terrorism. Sudan’s president has 3 warrants of arrest against him issued by the International Criminal Court. The country itself has been a hotbed of violence and turmoil, especially in the western part of the country in the Darfur province. In 2011, the southern part of the country seceded and formed South Sudan, taking with it most of Sudan’s oil reserves. In 2017 the USA lifted the sanctions. This report investigates various elements in the financial services sector in Sudan, pre and post the sanctions.

The banking sector globally is going through a challenging time with a slowdown in revenue growth and lower RoEs for the banks. African banking stands out in the sector as a segment that offers huge growth potential over the coming years due to the following factors:

  • Low penetration of banking products in both retail and wholesale segments, which is less than half the global average
  • Rise in middle-class population, most of whom are seeking banking solutions
  • Investments in African infrastructure and commodities sectors from overseas players, enabling M&A and project financing

As such, we believe that Africa will be a beacon of future growth in global banking.

 

 

 

NTU-SBF Centre for African Studies

 

50 Nanyang Avenue
Singapore 639798

 

(65) 6513 8089