THESE TOP 15 QUOTES FROM THE RENCAP CONFERENCE WILL GIVE YOU MORE INSIGHT ON THE INVESTMENT MARKET IN NIGERIA AND AFRICA

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Renaissance Capital recently held the seventh installment of its Annual Pan-Africa 1:1 Investor Conference in Lagos, Nigeria, and the event witnessed the attendance of some of the most outspoken economists in the globe, as well as notable Nigerian government representatives, both past and present. For anyone interested in the African investment market in any capacity, the conference provided a conducive environment to be enriched with the knowledge of the market.

More than that, however, the conference served as a platform for global investors, policymakers, and corporate representatives to rub minds concerning the economic future of Africa. The event, preceded and followed by a two-day series of regional investor trips to Nigeria’s capital city, Abuja, and one-on-one investor meetings had a lot to offer the attendees by virtue of the speeches, presentations, and press conference that were part of the programme line-up.

While the purpose of the conference generally outlined the challenges and potentials of investing on the African continent, the official spokespersons and guest speakers presented the framing, context, necessary information, and proposed solutions that made the event what it was on May 11, 2016.

Here are 15 of some of the most informative quotes from the conference:

Professor Yemi Osibanjo, Vice President, Nigeria.

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“We are at the point where we think that an expansionary approach is what we need to get things moving. Although modest to some other places, our six trillion naira budget is one that is fairly expansionary, and the whole idea is to ensure that we increase spending so as to energise the economy and begin to put the country back on the trajectory of growth.”

“The investment in infrastructure is very key. For the first time, we will be investing 30 percent of our budget in capital projects. Most of that is going into power, works, housing and transportation. We are working very hard to bring in more investment in the power sector. We are hoping to put 7,000MW in the grid by the beginning of next year.”

Charles Robertson, Chief Global Economist, Renaissance Capital.

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“In the long run, I still think that Nigeria has got the benefits of demographics, improving governance, better education, and GDP is not shrinking minus ten percent as the oil prices are collapsing.”

“…South Africa’s currency has been weakening for most of the last 20 years, but all emerging markets have sold off. And what we’ve been saying to investors for the last few months is that we should look at currencies that are cheapest in the emerging markets. That’s where there’s value… If you want to access Africa, buying South African stocks might be a good way to do that.”

“Top 100 [countries] is the target for Nigeria. Electricity reforms is great, fuel subsidy removal is sensible probably, given the fiscal pressure on the government.”

“FINTECH (financial technology) is a super sexy sector right now, globally. So that is where people want to put their cash and they have seen the success. Investors that put their money into Safaricom five to ten years ago as they were introducing the Mpesa mobile money concept have been very happy just holding their stock. [The investment] has given Safaricom the cash it needs to continue expanding and growing.”

Igor Vayn, Chief Executive Officer, Renaissance Capital.

Igor-Vayn-Rencap-Ventures-Africa

“Clearly without strong investments coming in to the country it’s going to take much longer for [Nigeria] to overcome economic challenges. But when we talk about investment, we’re talking about domestic investors as well as foreign investors. Foreign investors will come into the country only when they see that the domestic investors are comfortable doing business in their own countries.”

Temitope Popoola. Chief Executive Officer, Renaissance Capital (Nigeria).

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“The other major change in Nigeria is political. A new administration has arrived, and with it the rules of the game have changed. The age of impunity is over. Unfortunately, this change has coincided with shift in economic policy too, away from the free market economics we all know and naturally assume is best.

The system that is developing in its place has met with a lot of skepticism, and has come with some unpleasant by-products. Tax enforcement will need to be broadened. A regressive fuel subsidy will need to be removed. The budget deficit will grow and alternative sources of financing will need to be sought.”

Yvonne Mhango, Sub-Saharan Africa Economist, Renaissance Capital.

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“The government’s priorities may rank different from those of investors in terms of development – and investors respect that, because the government is accountable to Nigerian people and not to them – but they do accept that foreign exchange policy has to be more flexible. It will happen, sometime in the future, probably not as soon as investors would have liked, but it will happen.”

“In a way the devaluation of the naira has happened, because most people are not getting their one dollar at N200. If you’re importing goods into Nigeria, you put a markup. Thus, the devaluation is implicit in the market, and it’s reflecting through those higher prices.”

James Friel, Head of Investment Banking.

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“At this level of per capita GDP, textiles, agriculture and agricultural processing industries is where the investment should be happening, and that’s where the growth should be. You should be trying to get money into agricultural processing and textiles to create jobs for the millions of Nigerians who need jobs.”

“If Nigeria’s growth trajectories continue into the 2030s, the car [manufacturing] industry should be a success story, and by the 2040s you may have Aerospace industry.”

Dan Salter, Head of EMEA Strategy.

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“What we’ve seen in over 25 years of history is that economic shocks generate reform. Going back to India in 1991, Mexico in 1994, Russia in 1998, Turkey in 2001, and now Saudi Arabia in 2016.

“A no-brainer for Nigeria will be to develop mobile money. In Cote d’Ivoire, more Ivoirians have a mobile bank account than a normal bank account. It’s quite astonishing. The mobile banking sector will be an obvious place to push forward on.”

Source : http://venturesafrica.com/these-top-15-quotes-from-the-rencap-conference-will-give-you-more-insight-on-the-investment-market-in-nigeria-and-africa/

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