A recent survey funded by the Dubai Chamber of Commerce has revealed that the Emirate’s investments in small and medium-sized businesses in Africa have resulted in further financial support for the continent from the rest of the GCC countries.
The study was part of the preparations for the upcoming Global Business Forum on Africa ”Next Generation Africa” taking place on the first two days of November. The report examined the relations between young African entrepreneurs and investors from the GCC region to determine milestones and future opportunities.
The data has shown that the UAE and Saudi Arabia were respectively the second and fifth largest investors in Africa. According to fDI Intelligence, part of The Financial Times media group, the UAE spent over US$ 11 billion in Africa, while Saudi Arabia invested US$ 3.8 million.
H.E.Hamad Buamim, the CEO of the Dubai Chamber of Commerce, commented that Africa needed a robust entrepreneurial ecosystem to address local challenges and to give a new direction for economic growth.
The study also concluded there was room for cooperation between the startup ecosystems in the UAE and Africa. On one hand, African entrepreneurs were interested in technology and services. On the other hand, the more mature GCC startups were looking for ways to expand their businesses beyond the region and often eyed Sub-Saharan Africa as a possibility.