To continue with the development drive in Africa, Chairman of United Bank for Africa Plc (UBA), Tony Elumelu has reiterated the need for more global capital into the continent. He said to actualise the ideas and innovations of Africans, massive capital investment is needed.
The need to attract more global capital inflow to Africa compelled Elumelu to attend the on-going World Economic Forum in Davos, Switzerland, where he intends to meet with global leaders who have control capital.
His statement is in line with his discussion with about 5,000 African entrepreneurs during his annual Tony Elumelu Foundation (TEF) Entrepreneurship Forum in 2018, where he told the audience that entrepreneurship is the key to unlocking economic development in Africa.
In a recent interview with CNBC, Elumelu said to eliminate poverty in the African continent, entrepreneurs need to be supported and a business-friendly environment should be created.
“I believe that the development of our continent requires massive private global capital into Africa to fire and power investments in the area of infrastructure to create employment and eradicate poverty. I came to Davos to interact with global leaders who have control capital and that to me is important for the development of our continent.
I believe strongly that entrepreneurship is key for eradicating poverty in Africa and more importantly, getting our youths busy, empowering our youths so that again they will all team up to create employment that we need on the continent.
“As you know, capital goes to where it is most welcome, or where the investment destination is more hospitable, so for us as Africans, the issue is not about attracting private global capital, they are ready and willing to come to Africa, but we need to work with our political leaders to ensure that we create the enabling environment that will attract and retain the capital we need in Africa.
“I speak as someone who invests in other Africa countries, infact, we have investments in 23 African countries and I know that there is a lot of investment opportunities, what we need to do more of in Africa is to ensure that the enabling environment is good.
“Because if this is done, SMEs will do well, Big businesses will also do well and as our foreign associates and partners see that business is flourishing in Africa, they will come to invest in Africa. There is nowhere else you get the kind of ROI that you get in Africa and that is good for Africa, but we need to make sure that the global capital attracted is retained in our continent.”
The founder of Tony Elumelu Foundation added that the best way to develop Nigeria is to encourage small and medium businesses within the country. Adding that the development of Africa will cause a spiral effect across Africa. Elumelu said he’s optimistic about the future, and he has been relating his positive projection about Nigeria and Africa to global partners to lure them into investing in the continent.
Meanwhile, over one thousand African youths in entrepreneurship will be trained by the Tony Elumelu Foundation.