Johannesburg, South Africa September 20,
2011 — The Investment Climate Advisory Services of the World Bank
Group is training a regional pool of experts who will help investment promotion
intermediaries in Eastern and Southern Africa better respond to queries
from potential investors and draw more foreign investment to the continent
for infrastructure, tourism, and other projects.
The World Bank Group is training 20 people
at a September 20-23 Johannesburg workshop so they can go on to train investment
authorities in Africa and help them provide quality and timely information
to foreign investors. The 20 individuals were selected for their investment
promotion experience in the region.
The Johannesburg training is part of the
World Bank Group’s broader strategy to help Africa improve its investment
climate and strengthen its private sector, which includes drawing more
foreign investment. A World Bank Group report reveals that all 22 investment
promotion intermediaries in Eastern and Southern Africa are missing opportunities
to attract investment.
Global Investment Promotion Benchmarking
2012: Eyes on ACP assesses how well 77 countries in Africa, the Caribbean,
and the Pacific (ACP) facilitate investment by evaluating their web sites
and responses to two information requests by potential investors with tourism
and agribusiness projects.
The report will be released in February 2012.
Early results show that the region’s web sites have improved, but its
inquiry-handling capability has worsened since 2009. Only three of 22 investment
agencies in Eastern and Southern Africa responded when a potential tourism
investor asked about building a four-star hotel. Similarly, only three
responded to a request to open a seed research and production facility.
David Bridgman, the World Bank Group’s Investment
Climate Advisory Services manager for Sub-Saharan Africa, said, “If country
information is hard to obtain, foreign investors will simply go elsewhere.
The World Bank Group is helping African countries attract the foreign investment
they need to strengthen its economy and create jobs by building the capacity
of those agencies that deal directly with potential investors.”
The Johannesburg workshop will prepare 10
investment promotion consultants and 10 trainers from the Uganda Investment
Authority, Kenya Investment Authority, the Mauritius Board of Investment,
the COMESA Regional Investment Agency, the East Africa Business Council,
the Millennium Cities Imitative in Ethiopia and Malawi, ACP Business Climate,
and other agencies in the region.
The Global Investment Promotion Benchmarking
2012: Eyes on ACP is part of the broader Global Investment Promotion
Benchmarking report, which assesses 189 national IPIs. The report is
produced by the World Bank Group's Investment Climate Advisory Services
and sponsored by ProInvest, a partnership program developed by the European
About the Investment Climate Advisory
Services of the World Bank Group
The Investment Climate Advisory Services
of the World Bank Group helps governments implement reforms to improve
their business environment, and encourage and retain investment, thus fostering
competitive markets, growth and job creation. Funding is provided by the
World Bank Group (IFC, MIGA, and the World Bank) and over fifteen donor
partners working through the multi-donor FIAS platform.