Egypt remains largest FDI recipient in Africa in 2019
Egypt continues to lead Africa on FDI: Egypt remained the largest recipient of foreign direct investment in Africa last year, seeing inflows rise 5% y-o-y to USD 8.5 bn, according to the UN Conference on Trade and Development’s latest Global Investment Trends Monitor (pdf). The report said that the country’s efforts to implement economic reforms have resulted in increased investor confidence, but that FDI is still driven by the oil and gas sector, with the telecommunications, real estate and tourism sectors also seeing major investments.
Flows across the continent also picked up last year, with Africa seeing a 3% increase to reach an estimated USD 49 bn. The report noted that investment in Africa is still dogged by economic uncertainty and the slow pace of reforms seeking to address structural productivity impediments in many economies. North Africa didn’t perform so well, with FDI declining 11% to USD 14 bn due to a 45% fall in flows to Morocco, which attracted just USD 2 bn last year.
The report said that FDI flows are expected to rise slightly in 2020, despite last year’s concerns about a global slowdown, with investment, GDP growth, and trade all projected to rise. However, high debt levels among emerging and developing economies, geopolitical volatility, and shifts towards protectionist policies will continue to present significant risks.