11 Nov

Lunchtime Lecture: Opening Africa to Trade While Closing it to Crooks 

Professor Sir Paul Collier

4th November

Sir Paul gave us a fascinating and valuable introduction to developing business successfully in Africa. As he told us, the economic transformation of parts of Asia was led by four countries dramatically improving their productivity and leading the way. In Africa’s case he set out four countries now taking a lead in developing environments friendly to business and investment: Rwanda, Ethopia, Ghana and Senegal. The first two have made remarkable recoveries from catastrophic civil wars, and the last two have benefitted from oil. Infrastructure development has been crucial in several. In response to many good questions from participants, Sir Paul highlighted some key conditions for further successful development, such as pooling western governments’ expertise in clearly identifying strong local business partners, and took us on a tour of impressive developments from the remarkable success of Rwanda’s conference sector to tech success in Kenya and governmental change in South Africa. It was a shame we weren’t able to enjoy it with a glass of wine, but we were very lucky to have such an engaging and practical lunchtime masterclass from Sir Paul. 

Jeremy Hargreaves