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South Africa has been ranked as the fourth most attractive economy for investments flowing into Africa, according to the Africa Investment Index 2016 by Quantum Global’s independent research arm, Quantum Global Research Lab. The index is based on macroeconomic and financial indicators and the World Bank Group’s Ease of Doing Business Indicators.

SA one of top destination.jpbBotswana was named the most attractive investment economy in Africa, followed by Morocco and Egypt. Zambia came in 5th, behind South Africa.

According to the 2017 A.T. Kearney Foreign Direct Investment (FDI) Confidence Index, in which South Africa is rated 25th worldwide, overall FDI flows to Africa decreased 5% in 2016 to an estimated $51 billion. However, South Africa bucked the overall regional trend, with UNCTAD estimating its FDI inflows increased by 38%. “This is likely as a result of improving short-term economic prospects and the long-term investment potential in the country’s manufacturing sector,” the report states.

Botswana achieved the top score as a result of a range of factors such as an improved credit rating, current account ratio, import covers and ease of doing business. South Africa’s spot was reserved as a result of its growth factor of GDP, ease of doing business and significant population.

The report found that the top five African investment destinations attracted an overall FDI of $13.6 billion, with financial services, construction and manufacturing leading the sectors into which money was flowing. “Despite considerable external challenges and the fall in oil prices, many African nations are demonstrating an increased willingness to achieve sustainable growth by diversifying their economies, and introducing favourable policies to attract inward investments,” Mthuli Ncube, head of Quantum Global Research Lab, said when the report was released.

“Botswana is a good example. Its strategic location, skilled workforce and a politically stable environment have attracted the attention of international investors, leading to a significant influx of FDI."

Botswana jumped to the top of the list after ranking fifth in 2016, while 2015 saw the country in third place. According to the index, Botswana was scored to the credit ranking category, second in the import cover and current access ratio, and fourth for ease of doing business.

Other countries that made it in the top ten include Cote d’Ivoire, Algeria, Tanzania, Namibia and Burkina Faso respectively.

“With a population of over one billion people and rapidly growing middle class, Africa clearly offers significant opportunities to invest in the continent's non-commodities sectors such as financial services, construction and manufacturing, among others. However, structural reforms and greater private sector involvement are crucial to unlocking Africa's true potential,” Ncube says.

Image credit: https://twitter.com/mthulincube

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