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Botswana profiled at Singapore emerging markets workshop

Publishing Date : 25 December, 2017

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Botswana featured prominently during a recent workshop held in Singapore, to promote Africa as a potential and growing market for investors.  

The workshop, held at the prestigious Sofitel Singapore Sentosa Resort was attended by representatives from various Singapore companies and from International Enterprise Singapore, a Singapore Government trade agency tasked with encouraging and support Singapore firms to invest in overseas emerging markets. The workshop “Africa An Emerging Market of Opportunities” was an initiative organised by Malkara Consulting and Navitas Resources Group and designed to support the Asia Africa Growth Corridor Initiative.

Botswana was among two African countries profiled to workshop participants.  Chris Douglas, a director of Malkara Consulting informed a surprised audience that Botswana has had a stable democratic government since obtaining independence in 1966, has a strong currency and economy, safe environment and investment friendly policies. Botswana according to Douglas had many historical and economic similarities to Singapore.  It was he said, a close cousin of Singapore.

Adding to those comments, Professor Tom James from Navitas Resources explained to those in attendance Botswana’s low government debt to GDP ratio, a figure substantially less than all large economies including Singapore.  The debt to GDP ratio was one major indicator used by investors to measure a country’s ability to make future payments on its debt, thus affecting the country borrowing costs and government bond yields.  Botswana’s low ratio indicates it is a safe place to do business. But it was the non-financial “Good Governance” indicators about Botswana, developed by Malkara/Navitas, that captured the attention of potential investors:

Factor                                                                                Yes/No
Clean & tidy environment?                                                Yes
Well maintained & working drains, paths and roads?       Yes
Drink the Local Water?                                                     Yes
Safe to walk at night?                                                       Yes
Friendly & helpful civil servants? (Airport Arrival Test)     Yes
Effective law & order?                                                       Yes
Take your family there for a holiday?                                Yes
Good shopping facilities                                                    Yes
The indicators are based on the personal experience of Malkara Consulting and Navitas Resources many visits to Botswana.  Professor James commented that the indicators were an accurate measure of government competence, a significant element looked for by investors.
The workshop was very successful and further workshops on investing in Africa are planned for next year where Botswana will again be showcased.



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