Saturday, September 27, 2008

Africa: FDI - Africa Inflows Hit N6 Trillion in 2007

Sunday Williams, Daily Trust (Abuja) - 26 September 2008

The inflows of Foreign Direct Investment (FDI) to Africa continent increased to about N6 trillion ($53 billion) in 2007, the world investment report said.

The figure was obtained from the 2008 United Nations Conference on Trade and Development (UNCTAD) World Investment Report, launched yesterday in Abuja by the Nigeria Investment Promotion Commission (NIPC).

The report which was presented to stakeholders by the NIPC Director of Finance and Administration, Mr. Stephen Amase said that the booming commodity markets and improved policy environments in African countries contributed to the inflows.

The survey stated that global FDI in infrastructure has increased rapidly to about $786 between 1990 and 2006, showing an increase of 31-fold. The report also said that the amount directed to developing countries increased 29-fold, to an estimated $199 billion.

The UNTACD review titled, 'Transnational Corporations and the infrastructural challenge' noted that meeting the huge needs of developing countries for infrastructure require a better used of private sector resources including those of Transnational corporations.

He said, "This is apparent in the daily power outages that stifle economic growth in Africa and in the lack of access to drinking water for millions in Africa and Asia.TNC investment in infrastructure could therefore help meet some urgent development goals."

He added that Transnational Corporations from both North and South could support government infrastructure strategies by providing finance, technology and expertise.

"Government and the international community must help create political, economic and institutional conditions so that developing nations can maximise the benefits of infrastructure investment, whatever the source." He said.