The Trade with Africa Business Summit convenes trade experts, policy makers, global business leaders driving trade with Africa
While the world is laser focused on the U.S. – China trade war something equally significant that will reshape the global landscape for the next 30 to 50 years is emerging in Africa. With the African Continental Free Trade Agreement (AfCFTA) entering into force, there is a repositioning of the continent that disrupts the old way of engaging with its individual nations.
Power is being centralized in the African Union (AU) and those looking to enter commercially in the future would have to realign – should they seek to move with speed on their trade & investment agenda. Ignoring the African Union policies and structures in your long-range ‘African strategy‘ will be a missed opportunity. The African Union (AU) under AfCFTA has become a stronger negotiating trade bloc positioned to better serve Africa’s smaller countries. There is no doubt that the AU will play a much bigger role in the global landscape in years to come especially when it chooses to exert its influence on global matters.
External pressures on the continent is at an all-time low thanks to Covid-19, British Exit and Trump’s Presidency. Countries have turned inwards to face their own internal issues which has led to reduced foreign interference in African affairs. Africa’s leaders have used the opportunity to consolidate power and for the first time the continent has a window of opportunity to chart its own course by putting Africa’s own agenda center stage.
There are opportunities emerging on the continent but those who seek to engage must listen to the aspirations of Africans. Instead of creating artificial demands to sell products to Africa, tap into their quest. Listen to what African are trying to accomplish then offer your products and services as the ultimate solution. This would serve as win-win and is a more sustainable way of doing business. Afterall, if you seek to serve Africans as consumers of your products, understanding their pain-points should be your central focus.