In recent years, Africa has faced numerous challenges, and is still facing difficult times; however, the continent still poses an investment destination. This year, the African Economic Summit took place in the Red Sea’s coastal city of Sharm El Sheikh in Egypt, between February 19th and 21st, 2016. “Africa 2016” hosted 1,200 delegates who discussed how to attract private sector opportunities and build a 26-nation free trade deal signed last year to establish a common market. Delegates, for two days, discussed pushing forward the economy of the continent that accounts for 2% of world trade, despite having an economic growth rate of more than 4%. Eldib & Co attended the grand event at Sharm El Sheikh, where they were one of a select few law firms attending from Egypt. The forum was aimed at “pushing forward trade and investment in our continent to strengthen Africa’s place in the world economy”, Egyptian President Abdel Fattah El Sisi said during his opening remarks. President Abdel Fattah El Sisi said that the conference aimed to present investment opportunities in Africa and create a direct communication channel between African businessmen and overseas investors. Promoting investment is one thing that will lead to extending Eldib & Co’s services to new areas of practice and fields. This will allow Eldib & Co to extend their services to potential investors who would like mergers or acquisitions or consultation regarding contracts from different countries within or outside the continent. “Africa 2016 forum is expected to position Egypt as a gateway for foreign investments into African markets,” Omar Ben Yedder, a member of the organizing committee, told AFP. There are high hopes that African investors lead the growth process through developing the continent’s infrastructure. “When our own people invest then other investors get convinced,” said Sindiso Ngwenya, head of COMESA. The private sector’s role will be very important in addressing energy challenges, where 645 million people in the continent do not have access to electricity. “We plan to invest 12 billion dollars in the energy sector over the next five years… so that people in Africa can have universal access to electricity,” Africa Development Bank president Akinwumi Adesina said. Africa’s economy is expected to grow 4.4 percent in 2016 and 5% in 2017 versus 3% growth expected in developed countries.
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