As the world economy becomes more globalized, developed nations are starting to look at those that are less wealthy as prime places to trade with and invest in. It is because of this that global trade is now starting to peak in Africa, a region long ignored when it came to trade agreements. One of the biggest leaders in the movement has been the Middle East. The nations in this area are starting to invest heavily in Africa for many reasons, along with forming trade agreements.
There are many reasons that Africa is being favored by Middle Eastern countries. The first, and major reason is that they are close by. Trading and working with another nation is much easier when the two of them are in close proximity, and this is certainly true for Africa and the Middle East. Working with someone who is nearby, or at least in a similar time zone, makes communicating and working with one another simpler and more efficient. Another benefit of close proximity is that the cultures are similar to one another. This again, makes it easier for the two places to communicate effectively.
Besides being close to one another, the Middle East is also full aware of the challenges that Africa is facing. For a long time, countries in the Middle East struggled to build infrastructure, along with training a capable workforce. Africa is facing many of the same problems now as new businesses are looking to expand into the region. A perfect example of this is Ras Al Khaimah, an area in the United Arab Emirates. The leader there, Sheikh Saud Bin Saqr Al Qasimi has led initiatives to increase the education levels in his country to help improve polices and the workforce. Since similar actions are needed in Africa, leaders like this will be well versed in what is needed. By being familiar with the challenges, leaders in the Middle East can help these nations out and reaching trading agreements is much easier.
There are two more factors that have led to an increased trade level with Africa, along with heavier investments. First, is that since Africa is largely still developing, there is more potential for growth. By investing in an area that has more room to grow, you are increasing your chances of getting a bigger return for your investment. Secondly, the governments in Africa have been relatively stable over the past decade. In previous years there was a lot of turnover, making it hard to reach trade agreements since you didn’t know who would be in power in a year. Now, countries like the United States and ones inside Europe have been able to reach substantial trade agreements with Africa, ones that were not always possible in the past.
As time continues to go by, trading is becoming even healthier in Africa. No longer is the primary export the illegal ivory trade that has plagued the area for so long. Legal and legitimate trade is flowing from Africa to all corners of the world, thanks large in part to the leadership of the Middle East. Their heavy investments and trade agreements have been examples for the rest of the world to follow. As such, we are now starting to see global trade peaking in Africa like we never have before.