Analysis in brief: Africa’s tourism industry is the most well-known segment of the continent’s so-called ‘wildlife economy’, which is economic activity defined by profiting from the exploitation of nature’s flora and fauna without harming the source of this wealth. Wildlife economy has the potential of sustaining national economies (if professionally managed) and has many aspects to entice investors.
Defining the term, recognising its potential and acknowledging the challenges
Africa supports one-third of the earth’s biodiversity. Within all African countries, there are areas where these are still abundant within pristine natural conditions. The ways that this flora and fauna – and the often breathtaking beautiful environments in which they exist – can be commercially exploited, a notion as old as the fascination the international community has with Africa’s natural wealth. Safaris mounted to bring foreigners to big game have been operating for two centuries. Recent technological advances in transportation allow visitors to access remote areas and, upon their return home, purchase wild game shipped frozen via air freight from their recent destinations.Read more
In On Africa (IOA) is a research and intelligence firm that specialises in providing data-driven decision-making support for businesses and organisations that operate in Africa, as well as entities that are looking to expand into Africa.
IOA offers a wide range of research services, including market attractiveness studies, competitor intelligence, consumer research, geopolitical research, due diligence and more. IOA’s research projects often employ mixed-method research designs, combining various research methods and techniques to gather and analyse data effectively.Read more
Market research is a crucial aspect of global expansion for businesses as it helps companies identify new opportunities, understand consumer behaviour and make informed decisions. By conducting thorough market research, businesses can gain valuable insights into African markets, including market trends and regulatory requirements. Companies can take advantage of the significant business opportunities that Africa offers through leveraging the power of doing research in these markets.Read more
Analysis in brief: Recognising sea transport as a critical component in the movement of exports and imports, Africa’s coastal countries continue to expand port facilities. They also partner with inland nations for rail and road connectivity to ships, while regional and continental trade groups produce far-sighted policies to encourage sea shipping.
The state of Africa’s sea infrastructure
Ongoing investment in ports and shipping terminals is seen along the continent’s three coasts and is complemented by shipping facility investments by international shipping lines, such as Hapag-Lloyd and MSC. As a result, Africa was the only region in the world this past year to show an increase in port calls by dry bulk carriers like container ships – up by 2.5% in 2022. The continent also recorded a more than 5% increase in port calls by liquid bulk carriers, such as oil tankers. The upswing in activity is credited not only to rising demand by post-recession African economies but also to upgrades in ports and ground transportation links.Read more
In On Africa (IOA) is a leading research and advisory firm specialising in providing data-driven insights to guide decision-making for businesses, organisations and governments in Africa.
IOA’s success is driven by its four core competencies:
- Primary and secondary research
- Qualitative and quantitative analysis
- Data synthesis, insight and strategy
- Report development, dashboards and workshops
Analysis in brief: Africans’ meat consumption is growing but can only be met by imports because of systemic problems that have long impeded African nations’ ability to achieve high levels of meat production.
The lag between production and today’s demand is tomorrow’s potential
Although chicken is the most widely produced and traded meat in Africa, this article focuses on production and export of hoofed animals – cattle, buffalo, pigs, goats and sheep. Fisheries and fish products are also a topic for a separate discussion.Read more
Analysis in brief: Insurance policy ownership for Africans has been the world’s lowest per capita. This is changing as new technologies tailor insurance policies to African needs, while affordability and other issues are being addressed by Africa’s insurance industry.
A market of exploding growth
Like internet connectivity and car ownership, the penetration of insurance products into the African market is growing significantly. Part of this is illusionary: Growth in insurance policy ownership like phone and auto ownership is starting at a low level, so there is nowhere to go but up. However, the market potential is not an illusion. About one-fifth of the world’s population resides in Africa, where the insurance penetration rate is around 2%. Poverty that makes safety unaffordable that insurance makes possible, combined with a low understanding of what insurance provides have held back the industry on the continent. There are other considerations specific to the African market that are only now being addressed, such as making policies more flexible and inexpensive.Read more
In today’s era characterised by unparalleled technological progress, the dynamics of communication and interaction are swiftly changing. At the core of this transformation lies ChatGPT, an innovative breakthrough technology that gives us the capability to engage with an AI virtual assistant in a dynamic and meaningful way.
As the influence of this groundbreaking technology continues to resonate throughout South Africa, it is imperative to fully grasp its impact and implications. In On Africa’s comprehensive report, “ChatGPT in South Africa”, offers valuable insights into how ChatGPT’s innovative technology affects the lives of working South Africans. This report presents findings from a survey conducted with over 3,000 South Africans across various industries, providing a holistic understanding of how ChatGPT is used both professionally and personally.Read more
Analysis in brief: If African nations can ensure their entrepreneurs can legally protect the rights to their inventions, innovation will lead to business and economic growth, poverty reduction and the unleashing of Africa’s intellectual capacity.
Without IP protection, innovation is discouraged at the expense of national growth
No one wants their ideas stolen without credit or to never see their hard work pay off in terms of recognition and profit. The prospect of not being able to protect an entrepreneur’s intellectual property (IP) halts innovation. At a company level, businesses do not invest in research and development for fear their investment cannot be protected. Nationally, jobs that might exist through innovation remain uncreated, and economic growth that would result goes unfulfilled. Because of all this, there is little wonder that economists are urging national governments to do all they can to ensure IP protection. Such assurance for inventors would unlock Africa’s innovation potential.Read more
Analysis in brief: Recently, the economic group BRICS expanded its membership. The organisation that seeks to boost the voice of countries in the Global South in world affairs has its political agenda but is primarily driven by economic concerns, as was evident at its recent 2023 summit in Johannesburg. While achievements are far more difficult to accomplish than the rhetorical expression of desire to be economically independent from the Global North, they are obtainable.
BRICS expansion driven by investment ambition
In 2001, an economist with the investment firm Goldman Sachs coined the word BRIC for the four countries he believed would dominate world trade by 2050: Brazil, Russia, India and China. These countries were so enamoured by the prospect of such an outcome that they banded together in an organisation by that name in 2009, which became BRICS in 2010 with the addition of South Africa. The goal was to give the Global South the name, voice and respect that the Global North has always enjoyed in its dominance of world affairs, in particular world economic developments. Not a formal international body like the European Union or the African Union, BRICS is designed as a means to boost member states’ trade and investment opportunities.Read more
Analysis in brief: A continent plagued by poverty and economic mismanagement may seem an unlikely place for international investors to put their money. However, the proliferation and performance of African national stock exchanges reveals there is more to the continent’s economic picture. Trading in stocks of African companies shows Africa is an exciting investment location, where opportunities are showing themselves today, and future profitability seems assured by the continent’s demographics, buttressed by better economic growth policies.
In 1993, the African Securities Exchange Association (ASEA) was established, with Kenya’s Nairobi Stock Exchange as its founding member. The three original associated members were the Stock Exchange of Mauritius, the Uganda Securities Exchange and the Dar-es-Salaam Stock Exchange. Observing its 30th anniversary in 2023, ASEA has 25 African exchanges as its members, representing 37 countries that collectively incorporate 1,100 listed companies and have market capitalisation of US$2 trillion. There are several other African exchanges not yet affiliated with the group.Read more