Portuguese-speaking countries in Africa are “a hotspot for investor interest”, says Mateus Magala, Vice-president of the African Development Bank. According to the Mozambican national, “the time is now” to invest in these countries, because of economic reforms, a burgeoning middle class and regional diversity against the background of the new African Continental Free Trade Area.
Brazil and Cabo Verde were among the countries to introduce the most reforms throughout 2018 to improve their business environment, although this was not enough to prevent their decline in the World Bank benchmark index.
The value of Angola’s currency, the kwanza, has more than halved, since the central bank implemented a floating exchange rate regime as part of its macroeconomic stabilisation programme (MSP) in January 2018.
Macau has an important role to play as a “knowledge centre” in the Guangdong-Hong Kong-Macau Greater Bay Area (GBA) project, according to some of the leading Sino-Lusophone researchers.
Angola and Mozambique are among the highest-risk African countries, albeit with an upward trend in returns for investors, according to the Risk-Return Index 2019, a study by consulting firms Oxford Economics and Control Risks.
Most Portuguese-speaking countries have fallen in the index of the recently published Travel and Tourism Competitiveness Report, with the exception of Portugal and Angola.
The biggest privatisation programme Angola has ever seen – and likely one of the largest in Africa – will begin this year, involving some of the country’s most important companies. Under the programme, which runs through 2022, the state will sell its stakes in dozens of companies in all sectors.
Most African countries, including the Portuguese-speaking ones, have been facilitating the entry of Chinese citizens in their respective territories, the aim being to increase investment and tourism, indicates a study by the Migration Policy Institute
Technical studies for the revamp of São Tomé International Airport, whose limitations make it one of the country’s bottlenecks, are almost complete. The most delicate part, financing, is still being worked out. Prospects are more complicated for another Chinese-built major infrastructure, the deepwater port.
The São Tomé Trade and Investment Promotion Agency (APCI) will follow up on potential deals that resulted from the meeting of entrepreneurs from China and Portuguese-speaking countries, said the director of the São Tomé and Príncipe agency.
Art has been around for at least 10,000 years. It has taken many forms, from paintings on cave walls to dead sheep suspended in formaldehyde. But, whatever the medium, age and location, one thing is for sure: you can tell a lot about a culture when you look at its art. As the late anthropologist Claude Lévi-Strauss said, objects matter.
The diversification of Macau’s economy centred on relations with Portuguese-speaking countries is essential if the territory is to find its place in the Greater Bay Area, said the chief executive of Banco Nacional Ultramarino (BNU).
Angola’s electricity production capacity, one of the critical factors for the country’s development, has been increasing thanks to support provided by China, according to the World Bank.
China is involved in eight port projects, which have either been completed or announced in Portuguese-speaking countries, as a construction company or through funding, according to a recent survey by the Center for Strategic International Studies (CSIS).
Last week the Angolan parliament approved a proposal for a review of the General State Budget (OGE) for 2019, which reflects a more adverse economic situation than initially expected, mainly due to the fall in oil prices.
Funding from China to African countries has provided mutual benefits, with Angola being an example of “transparency” in the granting of capital, said US researcher Deborah Bräutigam.
Value Added Tax (IVA in Portuguese) is due to come into force on 1 July in Angola, as part of a broad reform of the tax system, which includes a new consumer tax, according to the Legis-PALOP+TL legal database.
The Angolan government has introduced further changes to the organic statute of the Private Investment and Export Promotion Agency (Aipex), which is now responsible for registering investments but not for their approval.
Equatorial Guinea may soon apply to join Forum Macau, said President Teodoro Obiang Nguema Mbasogo in an interview with the Africa Monitor newsletter in Malabo.
Issuing invoices for the purchase of goods or services have become mandatory for all taxpayers in Angola, a measure that aims to reduce the weight of the informal economy, alongside new rules of communication to the tax authorities.