South Africa: Beyond Hooking Up - Attracting Long-Term Investment Requires a Different Approach

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Summits, targets, and envoys are a good start to attracting much needed FDI to our shores, but they are not going to be enough. Nor is the nostalgia of #ImStaying. There are good, logical reasons for local investors to keep their money on home ground, and for new ones to enter - but only if government can get its act together.

Foreign direct investment flows to Africa rose to $46-billion in 2018, an increase of 11% on 2017 according to UNCTAD's World Investment Report 2019. Of this, South Africa received $5.3-billion, against outflows of $4.5-billion.

These figures seem to be somewhat in line with President Cyril Ramaphosa's investment drive, given it's a much better picture than 2017 when $2-billion came in and $7.3-billion went out of South Africa. His four investment envoys - Mcebisi Jonas, Jaco Maree, Trevor Manuel and Phumzile Langeni - have been tasked with helping to bring in the President's target of $100-billion in five years.

And the President, too, is doing his thing. This week he was in London at the Financial Times' Africa summit, assuaging investors, putting on a brave, perhaps even positive face for South Africa and the African continent.

But there are three...

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