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Monday, September 11, 2006

COLUMN: IS AFRICA PERFORMING BETTER THAN LATIN AMERICA?

Just when Latin America is waking up to the fact that China, India and Central Europe have surpassed it in the global race for investments and economic growth, they may soon have to add a new region to the list -- Africa. Only months after United Nations figures showed that Africa's economy grew faster than Latin America's last year, a new report from the World Bank shows that Africa -- while still behind in overall business friendliness -- has overtaken Latin America in a ranking of world regions that have shown the most progress in creating a good business environment. Read the full column here. Your comments?

19 Comments:

Blogger roberto e said...

Great Article and a Great Wake up call !
Considering the history :
Genocide,warfare,apartheid,tribal hatreds, AIDS,pestilence ,famine and disease,complexes good and bad left from colonialism,
it is remarkable that Africa is begining to come of age ,

As far as Latin America is concerned,
maybe we need to re-read
"El Perfecto Idiota LatinoAmericano"
a few more times until the Latin elites,and so called intellectuals finally get it... But I doubt it

Watusi and bellydancing anyone? Let's invest over there with the dollars we were going to invest in Latin America

Regards

6:51 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

from: Paul Thorsen
PThorsen240@aol.com

That's right, Africa has a good business environment. Maybe our legislators will then wise up and offer French language schools. French and English, the 2 world languages. And also mandate an hour of Mandarin Chinese and Japanese language instruction every day for our elementary school kids. It's not up the the USA to learn the languages of any people forcing their way into the USA. Learning a foreign language is for being able to communicate with the outside world, not for being able to communicate with a people who have forced their way into the USA and vow they are here to stay.

10:37 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Andres, Thanks to give us the possibility of express our opinion.

To reach the development Latin America countries has a lot of job to do, reducing burocracy, investing in education and principally supporting its own producers.

Chile, an example for Latin Americas countries, spent more money supporting its producers than attracting investment. In fact, they are very professional exporting goods and capitals.

Greetings

Ruben P.
Rosario - Argentina

10:24 AM  
Blogger ComoPegaDeRico said...

This comment has been removed by a blog administrator.

5:50 PM  
Blogger ComoPegaDeRico said...

I think that you can reform some practices that are important (eg. legal procedures) if you want to make business in a country, but it does not reflect other variables that show stability in a country as quality of the labor force, stability of the institutions, rules in the long term without reforms every 2 years. These variables are also crucial when you analyze if a country is attractive or not.

In addition, some indicators as Foreign Direct Investment (FDI) are growing in Latin America. For example, Colombia in 2005 had a FDI of U$10.3 billion with an increased of 233% with respect to 2004 and this is an excellent signal of economic performs in the region.


Therefore, Latin America have to show to the world that we are reliable and we have a potential that reflects some excellent results as Latin America exports that this year will grow 20% (Cepal) that only is exceed by China...this is not an excellent news!...for these reasons I invite to Oppenheimer to publish or show some news that have positive relevance to the region and can attract investors to the region...Latin America is not only instability, because Chavez has the power. Latin America is prosperity and a potential region for the world, please take this in mind.

5:59 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

from: Paul Thorsen
PThorsen240aol.com

naponhit, everyone is afraid to invest in Latin America because you people always end up stealing the business ("Nationalization"). And your judicial system is a total farce. That's why nobody wants to invest in Latin America.

10:15 PM  
Anonymous slrguy said...

May I ask a question about Sunday's column? Did the rankings you referred to take into account the added costs/liabilities of the rampant corruption in Africa?

While this is occasionally a problem in some latin countries, when my partners and I tried doing business in several west African countries several years ago, we found that the "government service" types were far more interested in the economic gains available to government officials than they were in furthering the public's interest. We eventually left Africa in frustration.

Is this facet of doing business ignored in the data you refer to - or has Africa made strides in combating this problem in the last few years?

I adored Africa, as I do most latin countries - but the unabashed corruption there was just too disheartening for me to continue...

Thanks for your insight....

8:53 AM  
Blogger roberto e said...

sirguy,
corruption is only an occasional problem in LatinAmerica ??
Read the Economist Magazine table on
Global Corruption and then come back to us with your thoughts.
outside of Chile its rampant!! And they re-elect the corrupt ones:
Menem,CAP,Alan Garcia... Peronists like
Kirchner whose deputies when he was Govenor moved money around in Santa Cruz likea Chinesee laundry

Africa is corrupt as well but they do not continually blame the world for their problems everyday as does theLA elite/academics
Africa has started to movefoward instead of backwards
That is a main component as is education

Latin America is ahead in that area generally
inspite of the academic diatribe generally taught. ReadVargasLLosas /Montaner's book thatI recommended above as well as perhaps some of our Host's work
Regards

8:16 PM  
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