5 January 2004An Australian report into trade and investment opportunities in sub-Saharan Africa has given the region a strong vote of confidence.The report, African Renewal: Business Opportunities in South Africa, Botswana, Mozambique, Kenya and Uganda, says the five countries “stand out as having good economic growth prospects among the economies of sub-Saharan Africa”, compare favourably to east Asia in terms of governance and growth, and therefore “warrant a closer look”.South Africa and Botswana, in particular, are seen as having higher incomes and therefore as providing the greatest short- to medium-term opportunities for investment.Drawn up by Australia’s Economic Analytical Unit, the report aims to help Australian businesses take advantage of emerging opportunities in the region.The five economies account for 76% of Australia’s trade and investment in sub-Saharan Africa, while South Africa alone receives 64% of its investment in the region. Australia’s largest focus for trade and investment worldwide is southeast Asia.“We are already taking this market (sub-Saharan Africa) very seriously”, Australian High Commissioner Ian Wilcock was quoted by Business Day as saying at the launch of the report in Johannesburg this month.“We don’t pretend there are no problems [in the region]”, Wilcock said, referring to HIV/Aids, crime and limited human capital, among the other deterrents mentioned in the report.“But the essential message is that Africa is open to business; it is well worth Australian business taking a look.”The report highlights the favourable business environment in sub-Saharan Africa, saying “international business people generally find their counterparts in these economies professional, accessible and courteous.”It found few business regulations that actively inhibited investment, noting that foreigners can invest in most sectors and that authorities generally allow for 100% foreign ownership.The South African mining industry, as well as that in Botswana, is seen as “strong”. The report highlights South Africa’s mining charter, stating that it “means new miners establishing in South Africa need to form a joint venture with a black mining partner”.Among the major investment prospects listed in the report are mining, agribusiness and related goods and services, infrastructure, education, financial services, tourism and information communication technologies.According to the report, South Africa, Botswana and Mozambique encourage minerals processing industries, and opportunities exist in the “tapped and untapped” mineral wealth of the countries.In terms of infrastructure, the report says all five governments prioritise the provision of infrastructure, and as such opportunities exist in developing roads, rail, energy, water, ports and telecommunications.Shortages of skilled and technically trained labour in the region presents “one of the best” opportunities for Australian educators. Opportunities for investment also exist in banking technology and advanced financial products.The report highlights export subsidies as among several non-tariff barriers to trade. Others included “opaque customs procedures” and import/export licensing. The report said that tariffs in the region were falling, but were still relatively high.SouthAfrica.info reporter
Share Facebook Twitter Google + LinkedIn Pinterest Ohio anglers have reason to celebrate following the release of survey data collected on Lake Erie this season. The 2015 Lake Erie walleye hatch was one of the largest in recent history according to fisheries biologists with the Ohio Department of Natural Resources (ODNR), and should lead to excellent fishing in years to come. Results from combined Ontario and Ohio surveys show that the 2015 hatch index is the highest since 2003. The excellent hatch should start to show up as catchable fish in the next three years.“With these hatch index results, we are expecting the walleye fishing in Lake Erie in the next three to five years to be exceptional,” said James Zehringer, ODNR Director. “This is outstanding news for Ohio anglers and out-of-state anglers who enjoy fishing on Lake Erie, the Walleye Capital of the World.”To estimate the basin-wide hatch of walleye, ODNR and the Ontario Ministry of Natural Resources and Forestry combine their bottom trawl survey data. The resulting basin-wide average catch for 2015 is 84 walleye from the spring hatch per hectare (about 2.5 acres), which is well above the long-term average of 32 per hectare.The 2015 yellow perch hatch also appears to have been successful in both Ohio and Ontario waters of the western. This is the fifth-best yellow perch hatch in the western basin since the interagency survey began in 1987.“Three good yellow perch hatches in a row should help the perch population in the western basin rebuild and lead to quality yellow perch fishing over the next couple of years,” said Jeff Tyson, head of Lake Erie Fisheries Program for the ODNR Division of Wildlife (ODOW).Each year in August, wildlife agencies from around the western basin of Lake Erie sample the waters using bottom trawls in search of young of the year walleye and yellow perch. Data from these bottom trawls are combined into a basin-wide index and compared to previous years to estimate the success of the walleye and yellow perch hatches. This provides biologists with an estimate on how many young fish will enter the fishable population two years later.Information on the ODOW’s Lake Erie research and management programs, fisheries resources, fishing reports, and maps and links to other Lake Erie Web resources are available at wildohio.gov.