IVORY COAST: THE AFRICAN MIRACLE

Back in 2010 when the world looked on in shame as Ivory Coast ripped itself apart as two strong men battled for power no one thought that come 2014 they would have an expected growth of 8.5%. It has thus become the known among the financial circles and business world as the African miracle as no one would have predicted that it would have made such an amazing comeback so quickly.

While many other West African nations such as Ghana, Nigeria and Senegal have prospered Ivory Coast has been left behind. As stated earlier this was because of the tragic civil wars of 2002 and 2010. However the reason behind the changing face of Ivory Coast lies in the undeniable fact that they have invested immensely in infrastructure. In 2012 under the steady leadership of President Alassane Ouattara they implemented a new investment code in place of the one that had been in operation since 1995. The new investment code has been an attractive factor to foreign as well as national investors. This is because it has introduced tax reductions, offered incentives as well as in some situations exemptions from VAT on equipment for private investors. Beyond this it has pioneered investments for key economic sectors such as the erection of low-cost housing, and the creation of factories and further infrastructure development.

It seems all so simple, invest in one key sector and growth and prosperity will follow yet so many African nations have been unable to do this. People need to understand that although the link does not seem so direct but I personally believe why Ivory Coast managed to qualify for the World Cup. They are only one of two African nations that managed to qualify undefeated and the fact that their country is doing well economically cannot be ignored as one of the determining factors. Because of their economic success more of their citizens have been able to support their national team, the government has been able to give the players their dues; it’s a ripple effect.

Entrepreneurs should take a page or two or three out of the book of Ivory Coast, focus heavily and perfectly on one key area and everything else will fall in place. 

Photo Credits: miga.org, sportskeeda.com 

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