Archive for the 'China' Category
October 5th, 2012 by Tom Minney
The World Bank has cut its growth forecast for sub-Saharan Africa. Earlier in the year it forecast 5.2% growth overall for SSA economies in 2012, but yesterday (4 Oct) it cut this to 4.8%. World Bank said in its bi-annual Africa’s Pulse report that Africa is still vulnerable to a fragile global economy and a slowdown in China, although high commodity prices and an increase in exports from countries that have made mineral discoveries are likely to underpin growth for the rest of 2012.
Africa achieved 4.9% growth in 2011. According to the study, excluding South Africa, the continent’s biggest economy, growth is likely to hit 6% in 2012. Strong performers are expected to include countries such as Mozambique, home to some of the world’s biggest untapped natural gas reserves, and Sierra Leone which has started exporting iron ore, according to a story on Reuters. Foreign direct investment (FDI) is projected to rise to $48.7 billion by 2014 from $31bn in 2012, as investor interest in Africa soars. African exports rebounded in the first quarter of 2012, growing at an annual pace of 32%, up from the -11% pace recorded in the last quarter of 2011.
World Bank Vice-President for Africa, Makhtar Diop, said in a press release: “A third of African countries will grow at or above 6%, with some of the fastest growing ones buoyed by new mineral exports and by factors such as the return to peace in Côte d’Ivoire, as well as strong growth in countries such as Ethiopia. An important indicator of how Africa is on the move is that investor interest in the region remains strong.. despite difficult global conditions.”
Most of SSA “middle income” by 2025
The majority of sub-Saharan Africa’s 48 countries could also achieve middle-income status by 2025 though their dependency on natural resources is likely to continue in the medium term, it added. Shantayanan Devarajan, the World Bank’s chief Africa economist, said that this highlights the need for governments to spend their resource wealth wisely and focus on public investment: “Resource-rich African countries have to make the conscious choice to invest in better health, education and jobs, and less poverty for their people because it will not happen automatically when countries strike it rich,” he said.
Diop said there was an opportunity for “strengthening economic transparency and financial controls around the new discoveries, to leverage their full potential through development policies that increase economic growth, create jobs, reduce poverty, and improve health and education especially for young people and future generations, while balancing the immediate needs.”
The World Bank said that after 10 years of economic advancement, 22 of Africa’s 48 countries have officially achieved middle-income status and another 10 could reach middle-income status by 2025 if current growth trends continue. It warned that recent soaring prices for wheat and corn were a concern, after the worst U.S. drought in 50 years. Africa’s Sahel region is already suffering from higher food prices, high rates of malnutrition and recurring crisis and insecurity. Furthermore, swarms of desert locusts and the ongoing conflict in The Sahel also undermine the region’s food security, including Mali and Niger.
Development gains – poverty and child mortality down
Child mortality has also been declining. Between 2005 and 2008, for the first time the absolute number of people living on $1.25 a day fell, as poverty rates on the continent have been falling faster than one percentage point a year. With fast population growth Africa is urbanizing rapidly and 41% of Africans live in cities, with an additional 1% every 2 years. By 2033, Africa – like the rest of the world – will be a majority urban continent. The bank says this has deep implications for social and economic opportunities as urbanization and development go together and it claims that no country has ever reached high income with low urbanization.
March 6th, 2012 by Jack Hudson
Private equity funds are leading the charge into African investments as they search for new growth opportunities which offer potentially better valuations than China and more growth prospects than UK or US and other developed markets.
Brian Marshall, Director of Diversified Lending and Leverage at Standard Bank Group agrees that private equity funds are expected to play an increasing role in investments flows into Africa in the next 12 months. He says an increasing number of private equity firms are raising capital to invest in sub-Saharan Africa investment strategies and scouting for deal opportunities. Several have approached Standard Bank Group as they seek partnerships with financial institutions with wide presence across sub-Saharan Africa.
Last year (2011) Standard Bank Group was involved in some giant private equity deals including acting as debt coordinator and lender in the acquisition of vehicle tracking company Tracker, led by Actis, as co-debt underwriter in Brait’s restructure and acquisition of stakes in Pepkor and Premier, when a consortium of private equity investors acquited a stake in IHS (Nigeria) and Helios Towers’ investments into mobile telephony tower portfolios in Ghana and Tanzania.
Standard Bank Group has established a team to conduct buyout and growth capital investments in Sub-Saharan Africa. He said in a press release: “Opportunities in emerging markets in general and sub-Saharan Africa in particular are expected to fuel pipeline of deal activity in the next 12 months. We are already seeing through our presence in Africa a flurry of activity on the continent from private equity firms that are increasingly showing an interest to invest in sub-Saharan African assets. Africa has turned into the place to be for many investors seeking growth markets.”
“This should be good news for the growth of Africa’s private sector and is happening at a time when many companies are expanding and in need of capital to fund that growth as well as finding efficient ways to manage their businesses. Private equity is all about enhancing efficiencies in business, taking them to the next level of growth and governance, and delivering solid returns to investors in the process.”
“The combination of accelerating and diversified economic growth, favourable demographic trends, substantial infrastructure requirements and improved macroeconomic and political stability offers a compelling investment thesis for investors in private equity. Furthermore, private equity investment in the region is underpenetrated relative to other emerging markets and sets the scene for an increased level of activity on the continent.”
South Africa gateway?
Several South African private equity funds and private equity investors are getting more active across the rest of Africa. They are attracted by low asset valuations, gradually improving legal infrastructure, low asset valuations and commitment to various economic reforms, a sharp decline in political conflict and apparent economic hardiness as many economies are not badly slowed by the global financial crisis and the global recession.
South Africa is not yet got the international attraction as a base for investment into Africa, compared say to Mauritius which has done well in balancing liberalization and ability to pass investment benefits through the investment vehicle to the investors with tighter controls where needed. However the South African Reserve Bank has introduced some changes to exchange control and others to make the country more attractive as a base and destination for foreign investors.
Will the US and China replace European private equity investors into Africa?
China has been a latecomer but has now started its own private equity investment vehicles for Africa as well as taking more interest in other funds. The trailblazers in establishing and building Africa’s private equity industry were Europe development finance institutions (DFIs) such as FMO of the Netherlands, France’s PROPARCO and the Germany’s KfW Bankengruppe.
Author Bio: Jack is a financial writer and enjoys writing articles on the global financial situation, making money online, the stock market, debt consolidation, and mortgages along with other finance-related topics. He is also associated with some online financial communities, for example www.twitter.com/debtcc.
December 5th, 2011 by Tom Minney
“Africa reminds me of China back in 1999. If you missed China then, don’t do that (miss Africa) now,” is how Plamen Monovski, chief investment officer at Russia’s Renaissance Asset Managers, describes prospects for Africa. “It’s the last place in the world that is due for that rapid change and advancement.”
He was speaking in an interview with Reuters on 2 Dec. He said investors looking at China will find assets already “very discovered” and more expensive. He said African equities were trading at “exceptionally cheap” levels, while Chinese demand for natural resources and Chinese investments are boosting African business.
“The real appeal of Africa is the rise of the consumer society. Africa has got a population the size of India and consumer force as big as India,” he said. Renaissance is backing Africa’s infrastructure, consumer-related and financial sectors, as these will gain from growing prosperity within Africa, rather than commodities which depend on external growth.
The International Monetary Fund (IMF) in October said it expects 6% growth for sub-Saharan Africa in 2012, up from 5% in 2011. It is positive about the outlook because of growth in mining and other areas. Africa is seeing new entrants and efforts by the world’s largest banks and corporate, including large funds
Monovski helps manage $2.5 billion of assets. Renaissance’s funds include a sub-Saharan fund which has fallen about 17% since it was launched in October 2010 as investors pull out of risky assets in the current crisis. The fund includes South Africa’s teleco MTN Group and Nigeria’s Zenith Bank Plc among its top holdings. He joined the fund management arm of Russia’s Renaissance Capital from Blackrock last year.
He also said China will grow and will not have a “hard landing” of strong correction in the current crisis, but much growth is already priced into Chinese equities: “We want to look at other regions in the world which looked like China in the late 90s.”
October 15th, 2011 by Tom Minney
The securities exchanges of the “BRICS” emerging market bloc have announced a joint initiative to expose investors to the dynamic economies of the bloc members, Brazil, Russia, India, China and South Africa. China and India are among the fastest-growing major economies over the next five years, according to forecasts, and all are increasingly attractive to investors worried about stagnation on US, European and other major exchanges. The initiative was announced on 12 October, during the 51st AGM of the World Federation of Exchanges (WFE), held in Johannesburg.
The stock exchanges will start by cross-listing benchmark equity index derivatives on the boards of each of the other alliance members. Following that, the alliance will develop innovative products to track the BRICS exchanges.
This brings together Brazil’s BM&F BOVESPA stock exchange, MICEX from Russia (currently merging with RTS Exchange), Hong Kong Exchanges and Clearing Limited (HKEx) as the initial representative of China, and South Africa’s JSE Ltd (the Johannesburg Stock Exchange). The National Stock Exchange of India (NSE) and the BSE Ltd (formerly known as Bombay Stock Exchange) have signed letters of support and will join the alliance after finalizing outstanding requirements.
The seven stock exchanges represent a combined listed market capitalization of US$ 9.02 trillion (source WFE and RTS website) with listed 9,481 companies2, equity-market trading value of US$ 422 billion per month and over 18% of all exchange-listed derivative contracts traded by volume worldwide (source Futures Industry Association) as of June 2011.
Ronald Arculli, chairman of HKEx and of the WFE, says in a press statement: “Global investors are increasingly seeking exposure to leading developing markets. The close relationship of the BRICS stock exchanges is behind this initiative, through which investors worldwide will gain easier access to benchmark equity index derivatives, which will now be offered in local currency on these exchanges. These cross-listings are planned to take place by June 2012.”
He adds that this is an important moment in the history of developing countries: “The alliance enables more investors to gain exposure to the BRICS bloc of emerging economies, with its increasing economic power. From a global perspective this alliance points to the growing relevance of the BRICS economies and financial markets in the coming decade and further underlines the reason for the BRICS relationship.”
Russell Loubser, CEO of the JSE, says: “As well as being barometers of market performance, indices also form the basis of other tradeable products, including exchange-traded funds. As a logical second phase in the alliance, the exchanges have agreed to work together to develop new products for cross-listing on the respective exchanges.” These products would combine exposures to equity indices of all alliance partner exchanges. Edemir Pinto, CEO of BM&F BOVESPA, explains: “These products would then be cross-listed and traded in local currencies. They will also allow investors to gain exposure to other emerging markets through a locally listed product.”
A third phase may include product development and cooperation in additional asset classes and services.
Madhu Kannan, CEO of BSE Ltd, says: “The BRICS exchanges alliance holds great promise, as it will create avenues for Indian investors to diversify and expand into other emerging markets. It will also provide unique opportunities to investors in other BRICS nations to participate and contribute in India’s growth. BSE will actively work towards bringing world-class products to India as well as developing new products for other BRICS markets.”
Investors worldwide and those whose homes are in the BRICS economies are increasingly interested in investing in high growth emerging economies. Most of the BRICS countries are predicted to have above-average economic growth. They are going through shifts in that there is rising consumer power generated by a growing middle classes in each, which will accelerate demand.
September 30th, 2011 by Tom Minney
In an article this morning (30 Sept), FT Tilt writer highlights a swift move by a state-backed Chinese company to acquire upstream mining assets in Africa. Writer Denise Law says Hong Kong-listed Minmetals Resources (MMR – www.minmetalsresources.com), part of China’s biggest metals trader, has offered C$1.3 billion ($1.25bn) for Toronto-listed Anvil Mining (www.anvilmining.com), with an all-cash offer for Anvil at C$8 per share, a 39 per cent premium to its closing price in Toronto on Thursday (29 September). The deal is subject to shareholder approval.
In April MMR bid $6.5bn for Equinox Minerals with mining assets in Saudi Arabia and Zambia but was outbid by Canada’s Barrick Gold and withdrew.
The author comments “underlining how state-backed Chinese companies were becoming increasingly reluctant to over-pay for overseas assets.” The article quotes Mark Hinsley, analyst at Foster Stockbroking in Sydney as saying the Chinese are keen to buy and current worries of slower global growth and extreme market volatility are giving them opportunities to buy up cheaper assets: “Chinese mining companies with strong balance sheets will use this opportunity to pick up assets as equity markets get pushed back and valuations fall.” He added that Africa will be an attractive destination for the Chinese, “given the supply/demand dynamics of copper and the huge exploration potential and operating cost landscape of Africa”.
Anvil’s main asset is the Kinsevere mine in DRC, which produces 60,000 tonnes of copper cathode a year. According to an MMR statement, the takeover would increase MMR’s copper output by 60%: “Anvil’s copper operations are an excellent fit with MMR’s strategy to build an upstream, international diversified base metals company. Anvil provides a sound platform and experienced management and operations team for MMR to further expand into the Central African copper belt and Southern Africa.”
A note by Foster Stockbroking says it is unlikely that a rival will emerge with a bigger bid for Anvil given that MMR’s offer is attractive. It notes how fast MMR is working to close this deal, from announcing a strategic review on 4 August to takeover bid, a total of 8 weeks. “This demonstrates the pace at which the Chinese can move to act on a strategic C$1.3bn deal. In our view, the valuation is compelling and unlikely to be trumped.”
Other Chinese mining companies looking to expand further in Africa, especially in DRC, include China Non-Ferrous Metal Mining and Jinchuan Grou as regional consolidation in the copper industry continues to play out. Hanlong Mining is also currently trying to acquire Sundance Resources, which has iron ore assets in Cameroon.
August 26th, 2011 by Tom Minney
Fund-raising for sub-Saharan African private equity funds was $1.056 billion in January to June 2011, down 5% from $1.11 bn in the first half of 2010. This includes the success of African manager Helios Investment Partners, who announced in June they had raised $900 million for Helios II fund. Total SSA fund-raising in 2010 was $1.5 bn, according to latest figures from the Emerging Markets Private Equity Association (www.empea.net). From market information, African Capital Markets News hears some Africa-focused funds struggled to raise capital.
However, there is a strong move into emerging markets private equity funds as managers hunt for returns, and as emerging markets investors turn to private equity. Total fund-raising for emerging markets funds for the first half of 2011 was $22.6 bn, according to EMPEA, more than double the activity of the first half of 2010. The level of fund raising for the first half is the highest since 2008, when $29 bn was raised in the first half for emerging markets funds.
In the first half of this year, 70% of funds were raised for China, India and Brazil, compared to 50% share in 2010, and $10.3 bn was raised for China funds, 45% of all capital raised. Yuan-denominated funds (56% by number of the Chinese funds) drew participation from Chinese investors including government agencies and contributed 40% of the capital raised. Brazil has two billion-dollar-plus funds that closed on $3bn in the first half and two more are raising $3bn in the current quarter. Some capital into 11 Latin American funds came from local institutions, including pension funds.
Sarah Alexander, President and CEO of EMPEA, said in a press announcement: “Western institutions are continuing to seek greater exposure to the world’s fastest-growing markets, and institutions in the emerging markets themselves are significantly ramping up their investment in the asset class. Fundraising activity in the first six months of 2011 reached almost full-year 2010 levels, and we estimate that fundraising for the full year could reach US$40 bn or more, which would exceed the 2006 total.
“Institutions such as pension funds realize they have to increase their exposure to alternative investments to yield the returns needed to meet their escalating liabilities over the next 5-10 years. Given the drubbing to their equities and fixed-income portfolios this summer, we anticipate even greater interest from institutional investors in private equity in emerging markets.”
The pace of funds making investments into private equity transactions is relatively steady. According to EMPEA, there were 431 deals valued at $14.1 bn in the 6 months to June, compared with 434 deals valued at $12.8 bn during the same period in 2010, and 856 investments totaling $28.8 bn across emerging markets in 2010. China and India together captured 68% of the total invested and 54% of the transactions. A total of $5.8 bn was invested into 136 China deals, accounting for 41% of the total in the first half (up from 19% in 2008) and $3.8 bn into 142 Indian deals.
In sub-Saharan Africa a total of 18 equity investments totaling $256m were completed during the first half of 2011, down from 25 transactions (totaling $186m) in the first half of 2010 and a full total of 48 transactions totaling $631m for the full year. EMPEA says that although activity is concentrated in larger and more mature private equity markets, investments took place across 54 countries in the first six months of 2011, including more nascent markets such as Honduras, Laos, Madagascar, Mongolia and Uruguay.
August 12th, 2011 by Tom Minney
Somaliland media sources and other rumours, including on Twitter, have suggested (12 Aug) that a deal on Somaliland’s Berbera port is imminent with China and Ethiopia. According to Somaliland media, Somaliland President Ahmed M. Silanyo, leading a high-level ministerial delegation, is in Beijing for his first China visit. Ethiopian officials are rumoured to be en-route to China for the announcement. This recent story on Somaliland media www.somaliland.press gives more details.
Berbera Port sits in a very strategic location on the Red Sea and plans to become a major port in the region for Somaliland, Ethiopia, South Sudan and Somalia. It could offer effective competition to Djibouti.
Somalilandpress.com last week reported presidential spokesman Abdullahi M. Dahir said the visit will focus on foreign investment, trade and development: “The aim of our trip is to seek foreign direct investment (FDI) projects from China in the fields of energy, mineral exploration and Agriculture. We are also going to seek assistance from China to implement water projects and other key infrastructures including transportation requirements (airports and roads).” The report added that the President was due to stop over in Addis Ababa for key talks with Ethiopian officials over a number of topics including the “Berbera corridor”, security and trade.
In March the same news source reported that the Somaliland Government plans to privatize the port and was holding discussions with Chinese firms. The Somaliland Foreign Minister, Dr Mohamed Abdullahi Omar had visited Beijing, China, after a visit via Addis Ababa over the port and other key areas, including security, and has apparently made several visits to China. The report says: “Both governments are pushing for foreign firm to invest in the port. According to sources close to the Government a number of firms expressed interest including the Hong Kong based, Hutchison Port Holdings (HPH), France’s Bolloré Africa Logistics and Holland-based, APM Terminals.” The latest www.somalilandpress.com report suggests that “Somaliland might lease the port to the global port operator and Hong Kong-based Hutchison Port Holdings (HPH) who might team up with another Hong Kong-based firm, PetroTrans Company Ltd, an oil and gas exploring giant which already won concession to explore oil in Ethiopia’s Ogaden region. The Chinese company plans to build gas transport infrastructure and processing facilities in Berbera where it will export.”
In February The Reporter newspaper in Ethiopia reported that Samson Wondimu, corporate communications head with the Ethiopian Roads Authority, said the Ethiopian and Somaliland governments were trying to secure the funds from the EU that would be used to rehabilitate the 245 kilometre long Togochale (boarder town)-Berbera road. Some 50 kms from the Ethiopian border, the road is rough and the asphalt road begins near the capital city, Hargeisa and goes up to Berbera.
The ageing asphalt road from Hargeissa to the port is in a very poor condition and it needs urgent rehabilitation. Berbera is an alternative gateway to Ethiopia and currently is said to be mostly used for food aid. But the Ethiopian Government plans to import parts of the country’s import via Berbera. The port also needs to be developed and it needs a substantial amount of investment.
According to Somaliland press, the first phase of the project, already approved by the EU, will be to conduct a study on how to develop the Berbera Corridor, a 850 km road. This could connected to a North-South (Cairo-Gaborone) highway. The news reported: “The second phase will be finding a reliable contractor for the job and investors. At the moment, its at the second phase and both Ethiopia and Somaliland have been in talks with a Chinese firm in Addis Ababa that is already constructing roads and highways in Ethiopia.” Mr Samson said the Ethiopian Government was finalizing work on the Jijiga-Togochale 67 km. road construction project launched 3 years ago with local construction firm, Akir Construction, due to finish soon.
Somaliland has been operating peacefully and democratically as a self-declared separate state since May 1991 and has been pushing for international recognition ever since. One key obstacle could be the African Union’s failure to take an African lead in opening this debate.
Kuwait reportedly recently gave Somaliland $10 mln to develop the airports.
June 16th, 2011 by Tom Minney
Interesting article in this morning’s (16 June) FT Tilt by Sid Verma on whether Chinese investors are squeezing out private equity investors. He cites a global PE fund manager who reportedly told yesterday’s (15 June) Africa Forum 2011 conference organized by Private Equity International (www.peimedia.com): “Chinese investment in infrastructure projects in the construction phase have phased out” the development of local engineering platforms, the infrastructure-focused domestic institutional base and local managerial expertise.”
Verma looks at criticism of Chinese projects which are often criticized because they are funded with cheap Chinese loans provided the work goes to Chinese firms, and sometimes linked to resource extraction. He argues that in many cases Chinese investment is going into the early construction phase rather than operating infrastructure. Therefore where there is a completed infrastructure project that could generate revenues (port, toll road, etc.) there is often a new round where investors could get involved in the management. He writes: “It is feasible that a secondary market for such projects could develop in the coming years as Chinese investors unwind their exposures once they hit the operating stage; and/or seek to change the risk profile of an investment; and/or maximise income from operations through a capital market refinancing. These developments would surely provide a bounty of opportunities for foreign PE firms and banks.”
Usually if we think of Chinese private equity we think of dragon giant, China Africa Development Fund (www.cadfund.com). Verma and notes that Hony Capital (www.honycapital.com), a China-focused private equity investor with $4.4 bn of assets under management, which in January spent $110 mn to buy Interswitch, a Nigerian payment processing company.
The forum continues today.
Of course, better to read his article for yourself here.
October 26th, 2010 by Tom Minney
Lontoh Coal (www.lontohcoal.com), a South African unlisted mining company with projects in Zimbabwe, wants to do its next public offer in Hong Kong, according to a Reuters report on a South China Morning Post story. The initial public offer (IPO) aims to raise up to $500 million.
According to the report Lontoh chief executive Tshebo Kgadima said he had chosen to list in Hong Kong as it might have been difficult for his company to sell shares in New York or London as the United States forbids trade or investment with Zimbabwean firms linked to the country’s president Robert Mugabe: “It is easier for us to look towards Asia than North America or some European markets.”
The newspaper said the IPO is planned for the first half of 2011 and that Macquarie’s Johannesburg office was an adviser of Lontoh on its fundraising plans. Lontoh is worth up to $1.5 billion, is planning a Hong Kong IPO in the first half of 2011, the newspaper said citing Lontoh’s chief executive Tshebo Kgadima.
Reuters commented that Lontoh would be the first African company to list in Hong Kong as the Hong Kong bourse is making an effort to attract more foreign companies to seek a listing in the territory.
The company describes itself on its website as “an unlisted public company active in the acquisition, exploration and mining of metallurgical and thermal coal. Though it is a new entrant in the field of coal mining and exploration, LontohCoal has established a presence and reputation as an independent coal mining company with a portfolio of metallurgical and thermal coal properties in South Africa and Zimbabwe.”
In May it bought 51% of Liberation Mining Pvt Ltd in Zimbabwe, and it lists its major prospects and sites as Lubimbi and Entuba in Zimbabwe and in Hlobane and Lephalele in South Africa.
May 30th, 2010 by Tom Minney
The China-Africa Development Fund (http://www.cadfund.com) has started to raise its second round of capital, aiming to raise $2 billion over three years, according to a report in China Daily (http://english.sina.com). The report cites Li Dongya, managing director for operations and management at the CAD Fund, which is China’s largest private equity (PE) fund focused on African investments.
The report quotes Li as saying: “The capital-raising plan will be open to qualified entities that have interest in making investments in Africa.” The capital raised would be used for infrastructure construction, agriculture, manufacturing and electricity projects.
The fund was started with $1 billion from China Development Bank Corp in 2007, after President Hu Jintao promised to set it up in 2006 at a Beijing Summit on China-Africa Cooperation. It aims to expand to $5 billion overall and has opened offices in Johannesburg and this year in Addis Ababa (see our previous report on the fund). CAD Fund has facilitated projects in Africa, including a sheet glass manufacturer and a cement factory in Ethiopia, a thermal power station in Ghana, iron ore in Liberia and industrial parks in Egypt.
Li apparently said: “We have decided to invest around $800 million in 30 projects in Africa, and the initial $1 billion is likely to be used up by the end of this year,” Li said. He added that the fund’s invested $140 million in 2009 alone (China’s total investment in Africa was $1.3 billion in 2009). CAD Fund makes direct capital investments and facilitates investments by other domestic companies’ investments, totalling more than 30% of China’s combined investments in Africa last year.
The fund does not hold controlling stakes in any project and limits its holdings between 10%-50%. Li said: “Our mission is to encourage domestic companies to invest in Africa and introduce China’s experience during its progress under the reform and opening up policies to the African companies, and also explore new markets for domestic companies in African nations,” he said.
The government-backed PE fund is targeting double-digit returns on its investments (ROI).
“We are a market-oriented fund, but cannot realize profits from each project quickly, given the continent’s unexpected difficulties for foreign investors and the lagging infrastructure facilities,” Li said, adding that the ROI targets are likely to be met over the next few years.
“We are in discussions with over 100 projects currently, and will focus more on agriculture, manufacturing, and infrastructure construction like electricity and harbours in the next phase after the manufacturing sector now,” Li said.
China and Africa rose 76% to $27.8 billion during the first quarter of this year compared with the same period last year, says China Daily, citing figures from the Ministry of Commerce. The high point for China-Africa trade was $106.8 billion in 2008, followed by a slump in 2009 due to the global financial crisis.