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Protectionism threatens growth in Africa

Protectionism threatens growth in Africa

04-10-2017 10:00:00

Industrialization, entrepreneurship and securing the best framework for growth and employment are on the program at the 'International Economic Forum on Africa', hosted by the OECD today. African protectionism, however, causes problems, Danske Rederier believes

"Liberalization of regional and international trade can contribute significantly to West African growth, employment, and to lift populations out of poverty. In the light of this, it is worrying that Ghana is currently working on implementing legislation that will complicate job creation, harm trade with the outside world and increase living costs for the Ghanaian people," said Anne H. Steffensen, CEO of Danske Rederier.

The OECD arrangement takes place in a period when the African economies are in a standstill. On one hand, there’s a desire for sustainable development, attracting investment and focusing on further regional and global exports. On the other hand, political development is increasingly focused on protectionism and narrow national economic interests.

This is seen, for example, in Ghana, where the current government is close to introducing new discriminatory legislation aimed at distributing the national maritime sector. This is a regrettable development, according to Danske Rederier.

With more than two thirds of exports outside EU borders, Danish shipping is highly dependent on international trade and open markets. With more than 10 percent of total exports to the African continent, Danish shipping is well rooted in the sub-Saharan markets.

It is therefore a challenge for Danish shipping that the African emerging economies now choose to shut out the outside world in a trade context, says Danske Rederier.

Source: Danske Rederier / Maritime Denmark

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