Positive signals from and for investors
The first South Africa Investment Conference took place in Johannesburg in October, was attended by 1 300 business leaders and civil society, and resulted in nearly R290-billion investment commitments by various multinational companies.
The Minister of Tourism Derek Hanekom commented from the conference, saying that investors now had the “appetite to invest” in South Africa again because government was starting to do the right things (including changing the visa rules).
“A new dawn” were the words used by German Federal President Frank-Walter Steinmeier during his visit to South Africa in November. Being the first German Federal President to visit South Africa in 20 years and pointing out that the last visit was to President Mandela, Steinmeier was describing the feeling of fresh opportunities for cooperation between the countries under its current leadership. This sentiment seems to be in line with German Chancellor Angela Merkel’s recent announcements of tax incentives for SMEs in Germany and Africa to invest in Africa.
More international and global recognition came in the form of South Africa winning the UNCTAD award winning the UNCTAD award for boosting investment sectors that help meet the Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs), and being named the Global Destination of the Year at the 2018 Global Sourcing Association Awards ceremony ceremony. The United Nations Conference on Trade and Development (UNCTAD) honours investment promotion agencies and their governments for their achievements, but also showcases best practices in attracting investment into SDG-related projects.