CEOs optimistic about Africa, despite uncertainty

Africa’s top chief executives remain “optimistic” about growth despite volatility and uncertainty on the continent, PricewaterhouseCoopers said in a report Thursday.

“CEOs in Africa feel more positive about their ability to generate revenue growth and about prospects for the economy now that they are emerging from the global financial recession,” PwC Africa senior partner Suresh Kana said.

The results were published on Thursday in PwC’s “Africa Business Agenda”, based on information from 260 CEOs in Africa.

“In general, they are more confident about their own company’s growth than they are about their industry’s prospects,” PwC said in a statement, with 84 percent saying they “remain confident overall.”

But poor government responses to major challenges were a major concern.

Key CEO areas of concern were led by government responses to over-regulation, as well as exchange rate volatility, fiscal deficit and debt burdens, and adequate infrastructure.

Other areas of concern are the increasing tax burden and the lack of stability in capital markets.

“Governments have their work cut out for them,” the report read.

PwC said that while conditions varied greatly across the “complex and diverse” continent in different political, economic and legal environments, the overall outlook was positive.

“Doing business on the continent can be a daunting experience for any organisation as they are faced with a myriad of uncertainties and challenges,” Kana said.

“Notwithstanding the difficulties and challenges ahead, many African organisations have learnt to brace themselves and adapt quickly, overcoming many of these challenges, including mitigating the risks – and turning Africa into the next frontier of growth.”

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CEOs optimistic about Africa, despite uncertainty