Edge International

Africa: Emerging Opportunities on the Dark Continent

Less than a decade into the new century, it is silly to try to predict too much. Who could have predicted the rest of the twentieth century accurately, in 1906? Given vectors at play, though, there is little doubt that the next decade (never mind the next century) is going to move Africa to a very different place than the dismal picture associated with the continent in the twentieth century.

With this move will come increased opportunities for selling sophisticated legal services.

It is more than a decade since the end of apartheid and Africa’s most brutal civil wars. Governance structures like the Pan-African Parliament, the New Partnership for African Development (NEPAD) and the African Peer Review Mechanism

(APRM) are in place and having an impact. It is true that some regional conflicts persist and certain African countries continue to occupy the bottom of global corruption perception surveys. It is equally true, though, that significant potential exists. The past five years have been a bonanza for suppliers of telecommunications equipment in Africa (especially mobile phone technology), and for financiers and service providers. Most of the investment in this area has not come from Europe and America, though, but the Middle East. There are more mobile than fixed-line phones in Africa, with growth still far exceeding developed markets.