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2015 Africa Summit in Johannesburg - 25 Mar

18 Mar 2015

On 25 March, the global spotlight falls on opportunities and potential for Africa’s built environment as the Royal Institution of Chartered Surveyors (RICS) holds its 2015 Africa Summit in Johannesburg, South Africa.

TC Chetty, RICS country manager for South Africa, says a highly topical issue on the programme will cover infrastructure as a core factor in sustaining growth.

Engaging role players from across the continent and internationally, key speakers and panellists at the 2015 Africa Summit will debate and explore topics such as the future economic sustainability and emerging market outlook for southern Africa, as well as drivers, trends and opportunities for investment in Sub-Saharan Africa’s fastest growing regions.

According to Stanlib emerging market economist, Kganya Kgare, over the next five years, Africa’s economic growth is projected to outpace all other continents.

“Forecasts also indicate that four of the world’s 10 fastest-growing national economies will be African, with annual GDP growth rates in Nigeria, Zambia, Ghana, Ethiopia, Mozambique, Tanzania and Democratic Republic of Congo expected to exceed more than 6%.”

Kgare says importantly, where is the investment coming from, what are the risks and the vital ingredients which will underpin ongoing emerging market momentum?

Sub-Saharan Africa is recognised as one of the fastest growing regions of the world - both in terms of economics and population, attributable in part to reduced trade barriers, strengthening governance and improved political stability.

A panel discussion at the Summit will explore growth markets and opportunities in this region and how Africa can sustain development, including high value investment, the property market, and the issues around skills employment and capacity.

Further to this, with more than 90% of future population growth set to occur in large cities in developing countries, over the past two decades, Africa has experienced the highest rate of urban growth in the developing world at an annual rate of 3.5% - anticipated to prevail until 2050. Previous projections have indicated that between 2010 and 2015, some African cities will account for up to 85% of the continent’s population, which raises a discussion on the type of cities African countries need in order to develop.

The RICS Africa Summit will discuss urban development and creating internationally competitive, innovative cities; maximising land use for high population projections; and planning, housing and development requirements for rapid urban growth.

TC Chetty, RICS country manager for South Africa, says a highly topical issue on the programme will cover infrastructure as a core factor in sustaining growth, with the power sector being a prime example of infrastructure deficit - whether measured in terms of generation capacity, electricity consumption or security of supply.

Interestingly, the 48 countries of Sub-Saharan Africa - with a combined population of 800 million, generate approximately the same amount of power as Spain - with its population of 45 million, says Chetty.

The Summit programme also includes a panel discussion on business opportunities in Africa’s development, as well as roundtable topics on housing, urbanisation and city competitiveness, shopping centres and retail, and rural development and land reform.

For more information, visit the website.

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