Department for International Development
3 graphs that explain why investing in Africa is good for UK firms
- Also published by:
- Department for International Trade
The UK's Trade Commissioner to Africa explains why UK investments overseas benefit British businesses.
By Her Majesty’s Trade Commissioner for Africa, Emma Wade-Smith OBE
Africa’s success matters to the UK. It’s home to 8 of the 15 fastest growing economies in the world. And yet African countries receive less than 4% of foreign direct investment.
The type of quality investment that UK firms bring to Africa is vital to drive growth, create jobs and boost infrastructure. But investments overseas are often misunderstood.
Here are 3 ways UK investments overseas benefit British businesses:
1. Overseas investment increases the UK bank balance
In 2018, UK companies’ net earnings from their investments abroad were roughly £94bn. These profits can be brought back to the UK to benefit shareholders and the wider public through taxation.
2. Businesses that invest abroad are more productive
Evidence shows that UK companies that invest overseas become more competitive and productive. They pick up new technologies and local business know-how, which are then brought back to the UK.
3. These ideas are tried and tested: successful traders tend to also be investors
In a study of more than two thousand decision makers in businesses with turnover of more than $2m, roughly half both traded and invested, or were investigating opportunities.
Data from the Office of National Statistics shows UK direct investments in Africa amounted to more than £38bn in 2018. With huge growth predicted in so many African markets in sectors like technology, finance, renewables and agriculture, now is the time for UK businesses to seize these opportunities.
As we prepare for the UK-Africa Investment Summit on 20 January, we’re encouraging UK businesses of all shapes and sizes to #InvestInAfrica.
Latest News from
Department for International Development
Sir Philip Barton appointed as Permanent Under-Secretary of new Foreign, Commonwealth and Development Office04/08/2020 10:27:00
Sir Philip Barton has been appointed as the Permanent Under-Secretary of the new Foreign, Commonwealth and Development Office.
Liverpool scientists receive UK aid to save lives from deadly diseases29/07/2020 15:10:00
UK aid will help Liverpool School of Tropical Medicine research on preventing the spread of infectious diseases like tuberculosis.
UK aid funding available for innovative energy projects27/07/2020 10:05:00
The UK’s innovation agency, Innovate UK, is offering £20m of UK aid funding to develop and demonstrate innovative solutions for clean, affordable and secure energy access in sub-Saharan Africa, South Asia or South East Asia.
UK calls for states to protect immunisation programmes alongside search for COVID-19 vaccine23/07/2020 16:22:00
At a virtual event, the UK urged United Nations members to protect vital immunisation programmes whilst also supporting the search for a coronavirus vaccine.
UK Government matches another £5 million of donations for coronavirus appeal after huge public response23/07/2020 15:10:00
Funds raised by the DEC appeal will support the work of the 14 leading UK charities, who are helping to stop the spread of the virus and saving lives in refugee camps.
UK Government doubles public donations to tackle coronavirus in vulnerable countries14/07/2020 12:10:00
The Disaster Emergency Committee has launched an appeal for donations to help the world’s most vulnerable through the coronavirus pandemic.
Angelina Jolie and UK call for support to protect education for refugee children13/07/2020 15:10:00
The UK has announced £5.3 million of new UK aid to support salaries of teachers in the world's poorest refugee-hosting countries.
UK stands by Iraq during coronavirus pandemic10/07/2020 16:10:00
International Development Secretary sees how UK aid is helping the Government of Iraq to deliver critical economic reforms and tackle coronavirus in the country.
Ambassador Julian Braithwaite’s statement on Women’s Economic Empowerment09/07/2020 15:10:00
The UK's Ambassador to the WTO and UN in Geneva, Julian Braithwaite, yesterday delivered a statement on women and trade at the event ‘Women’s Economic Empowerment through Trade’ organised by the International Trade Centre and the Organisation for Women in International Trade.