World renowned electricity company, General Electric is seeking to more than double revenue from Africa to as much as $10 billion over the next five years, as it targets power,health and locomotive opportunities in countries including Nigeria and Ethiopia.
“We’re bullish on Nigeria,” Thomas Konditi, GE’s president for
transportation for Africa and South Africa chief executive
officer, said in an interview on Wednesday. “We met with a
couple of the incoming leadership and they’ve put rail right
behind power. They don’t have mines as much, so you’re
going to look for more general freight.”
Nigeria, Africa’s biggest economy, transports only 0.1% of its
freight by rail and could boost the number of locomotives to
as many as 500 engines from 25 now, Konditi said at the
World Economic Forum in Cape Town.
The company, based in Fairfield, Connecticut, plans to resume
talks with the new government in Nigeria on an agreement
with the previous administration for 200 locomotives, he said.
While nine of the world’s 15 fastest-growing economies are in
Africa, some countries are contending with a downturn in
commodity prices, power cuts and political instability.
Electricity shortages and a lack of infrastructure, including rail,
are limiting growth and offer opportunities for investment.
Jeff Immelt, GE’s chief executive officer, has identified Africa
as one of the company’s most important growth areas, with
plans to invest $2 billion in the region by 2018 as well as
doubling its workforce on the continent.
The Africa spending by GE will go into developing facilities,
improving supply chains and for training workers, he said last