A slippery slope for SA

2008-04-10 00:00

The Boston Consulting Group’s recently published the report The 2008 BCG 100 New Global Challengers. How Top Companies from Rapidly Developing Economies are Changing The World, makes interesting reading. South African political and business leaders would do well to take heed of its contents for two reasons. Firstly, it focuses on those regions of the world that are currently displaying rapid economic growth, as well as the fast growing companies that operate within these territories. Secondly, many of the world’s largest and most powerful corporations have been studying this report in order to examine and better understand which of these organisations are customers, suppliers and competitors that will be soon be challenging them in global markets. If this practice is good enough for the likes of General Electric, then surely it is good enough for any South African company, and indeed our government?

Secondly, during the same time period, the level of Foreign Direct Investment (FDI) across these 14 Rapidly Developing Economies (RDEs) reached $245 billion. Compare this to The Economist Intelligence Unit’s (EIU) forecast on South Africa’s investment attractiveness to 2011. In its 2007 report World Investment Prospects to 2011: Foreign Direct Investment and the Challenge of Political Risk, which was produced in collaboration with Columbia University’s Programme on International Investment, the EIU believes this country will receive about $3.2 billion in FDI. This is yet another indicator of how far we are falling behind the movers and shakers of the RDE world.

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