Africa is a continent of many languages, religions, and ethnic cultures; not all of them living in harmony. Like most emerging economic regions doing business in Africa can be a challenge for American investors or entrepreneurs. Due to some nations' potential for political unrest and bureaucratic corruption, along with possible fragile physical and economic infrastructures, African consulting services are needed.
On the positive side, according to the World Bank, growing regional economies along with the new emerging democracies are improving the economic climate in Africa. Investor and business protection is being more adequately enforced, and bureaucratic complications are being simplified making doing business easier within the continent.
Regardless of positive economic climate changes, when doing business in Africa, problems may still arise including:
- Cross-cultural communication due to the myriad of cultures within the continents is a potential problem. Some Africa consulting services offer cross-cultural training to foreign entrepreneurs and investors entering the African marketplace.
- Inadequate investor protection is a serious concern. Certain established financial institutions offer help to entrepreneurs and investors.
- Civil disturbances are another possible problem that can be aided by protection.
- Problems with currency transfer restrictions can be helped by financial institutions.
- Breach of contract between American and African partners can be another issue the U.S., world governments, and legal agencies can help with.
- Environmental issues can be handled by U.S. and world government agencies.
As a foreign investor or entrepreneur entering an emerging marketplace, you will need to find the right guidance to protect your business interests.
Get African consulting information and protections from U.S. government agencies
Much Africa business consulting information along with protection sources come from agencies that include the U.S. Chamber of Commerce, the Department of Commerce, and the Library of Congress.
The Library of Congress
offers an extensive contact list of region-specific Africa business consulting associations. The Department of Commerce's Export.gov website
offers many services for American entrepreneurs venturing in markets abroad, including Africa. Most notable is their market entry matching service,
where American entrepreneurs are matched with quality African business partners. Also on the Export.gov website, there's a list of contact links to Africa consultants
with knowledge of the export market.
Get specific advice and protections from established African consulting international institutions
International banks and other financial institutions servicing the African economy may be prime resources for Americans investing or business ventures in Africa.
Find directories that contain quality Africa consulting information
Note that, when entering a new marketplace in an emerging nation, take appropriate precautions when dealing with commercial trade consulting services. As with any business transaction conducted anywhere, let the buyer beware.
of Africa-specific trade associations and businesses.
- Before paying for Africa consulting services, get as much free counseling as possible from U.S. government agencies and established international financial institutions.
- Take classes to learn about cross-cultural differences and country/regional-specific languages before entering the African marketplace.