Department for International Trade
3 graphs that explain why investing in Africa is good for UK firms
- Also published by:
- Department for International Development
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 Trade
New expert panel established to support UK trade negotiations25/09/2020 08:10:00
A panel of leading economists and trade exports will help DIT develop cutting-edge trade models to reflect the modern economy and impact of Covid.
Trade barriers removed to boost business24/09/2020 15:10:00
DIT has removed 175 barriers to trade across 61 countries worldwide, opening new global markets for British exporters.
Liam Fox makes SMEs his priority as WTO contest continues24/09/2020 08:10:00
Former UK International Trade Secretary Dr Liam Fox pledges to get small businesses trading across the globe.
Negotiations on the UK’s Future Trading Relationship with the US: Update23/09/2020 15:10:00
The fourth UK-U.S. Free Trade Agreement (FTA) negotiating round took place from 8 September to 18 September 2020.
UK invites the world to collaborate on a musical project at Expo 2020 Dubai23/09/2020 08:10:00
Everyone is encouraged to submit sounds for inclusion in inspiring musical soundscape to be heard by millions at UK Pavilion.
Dr Liam Fox through to 2nd round in WTO Director General contest21/09/2020 08:10:00
Former UK International Trade Secretary Dr Liam Fox says experienced leadership is needed as selection process continues.
US exports drive home success for UK golf trolley manufacturer18/09/2020 12:10:00
Stewart Golf's US sales quadruple to reach $2 million in the first half of 2020 as it grows staff count by 60% during pandemic.
UK businesses now eligible to export beef to the USA17/09/2020 12:12:00
First four businesses are now officially listed as eligible to export UK beef to the USA.