Commercial News from Africa

Key commercial and political activity in Africa for private equity investors by DCE Partners, UK Private Equity advisors to Atta.

The good news about Africa's growth story. The growth of gross domestic product, surging exports, rising foreign investment and the emergence of equity markets are easy to measure - and they all point to a region flush with opportunity. An increasing number of African countries are steaming towards middle-income status. In 2006, 13 countries were categorised as middle income. That figure has grown to 21 and the World Bank (the organisation that sets the middle income benchmark) expects another 10 countries to join that list by 2025. Most positively, growth has extended far beyond just the resource-rich countries.

Half a million support to small farmers in Sub-Saharan Africa. The Overseas Private Investment Corporation (OPIC) and the Multilateral Investment Guarantee Agency (MIGA) announced a US$350 million facility to support agribusiness investments in countries throughout sub-Saharan Africa.     The Fund plans to reach 500,000 small farmers over the next 10 years, leading to an estimated increase in total food production of over 1 million tons per year.