Why Britain needs new Africa trade approach
With so many known unknowns, it’s crucial that Britain has a clear vision of the relationship it wants with Africa
I have never seen the trust deficit between governments, business and society as depleted as it is today. We live in a more nationalistic world, with creeping resistance to foreigners. People are losing faith that governments and big business hold the solutions to society’s challenges. There’s too little to show from 50 years of industry and government collaboration in the Niger Delta, for example, or copper mining in the Democratic Republic of the Congo. These industries have been extractive rather than additive. Corporate social responsibility programmes and government handouts have failed to develop and diversify these regions. Creeping nationalism has manifested itself in governments imposing tougher and more nationalistic regulations. Witness the example of MTN in 2016 and the record fine imposed by Nigerian regulators, or the swathe of new regulations in Tanzania. Regulatory risk has overtaken currency risk as the biggest concern for CEOs. So, what lessons can be drawn from al...