No longer the Dark Continent – Africa is open for business!

August 27th, 2014, Published in Articles: EE Publishers, Articles: EngineerIT, Featured: EE Publishers

 

“If you have a business and your business does not reach out to Africa, you are presiding over a dying enterprise, and that is not open for negotiation. We see it every day”.

Victor Kgomoeswane  “Africa is open for business" a

Victor Kgomoeswane “Africa is open for business.”

This was the message from Victor Kgomoeswane, author of “Africa is open for business” and anchor  for CNBC Africa Business news. He delivered the keynote address at the Schneider Electric  XperienceEfficiency ZA expo  held in Boksburg on 26 and 27 August 2014. He spoke about several opportunities but focussed mainly on the need for the move to renewable energy. “When it comes to energy Africa is still the Dark Continent, one just has to fly over it at night. Africa has a huge potential to become the world’s largest exporter of renewable energy. We have abundant sunlight and mighty rivers as sources for energy generation.”

There is no doubt that Africa’s economic renaissance continues apace, with global investors entering the continent to optimise the dynamic emerging environment. It’s the second-fastest growing continent in the world and the only one with a young population that can form an active labour force for multinational companies.

Kgomoeswane is unashamedly an Afro-optimist.  His departure point is from Africa’s potential as a competitive and exciting global business and investment centre, filled with opportunity and on the brink of fulfilling its economic potential. He  does not minimise the challenges and the risks associated with doing business in Africa’s emerging and developing economies but is convinced that the current and future economic development potential represents a real upside and that the returns on offer far outweigh the risks and any potential downside.

Africa needs private sector companies with a track record to make a statement that the continent gets their vote. He said, “Governments can talk, people like me can make speeches but ultimately if investors decide not to invest the story remains a fairy tale and we all know how fairy tales work – they all end with ‘and they  lived happily ever after.’

“Africa is open for business and renewable energy is the way to go for the future.” Kgomoeswane told delegates.

Eric Leger: “Together we hold the power towards an energy efficient future.”

Eric Leger, country president for Southern Africa Schneider Electric said that  the world-wide energy growth by 2035 is expected to be more than 40%, yet  energy grids worldwide are under immense stress, which affects entire industries , the way we do business and our personal lives.

“It is Schneider Electric’s belief that effective energy management begins and ends with a strategy that addresses demand options focussed on energy efficiency, supply choices that need to be safe, reliable, affordable and increasingly sourced from renewable sources. Resolving and managing the energy and sustainability challenge is a responsibility shared by the entire population. Together we hold the power towards an energy efficient future,” said Leger. The Experience Efficiency ZA  expo went a long way to show the many opportunities available. As Kgomoeswane said  “Africa is open for business and renewable energy is the way to go for the future!”

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