African markets withstand COVID-19



JOHANNESBURG, (CAJ News) SOUTH Africa and Mauritius are leading the way as financial markets in Africa prove robust despite disruption from the coronavirus (COVID-19) pandemic.

This is according to newly-released data out of the 2020 edition of the Absa Africa Financial Markets Index, now in its fourth year of publication.

Independently produced by the Official Monetary and Financial Institutions Forum (OMFIF), the index records the openness and accessibility of financial markets across the continent

South Africa and Mauritius retain the top spots, performing well on most pillars.

South Africa maintains a sizeable lead because of its deep financial markets, whilst for Mauritius, it has been the growing capacity of local investors that has kept it near the top.

Nigeria, Botswana and Namibia round off the top five.

The countries whose scores improved the most from last year are Ghana, Nigeria, Morocco and Seychelles.

Charles Russon, Chief Executive of Absa Corporate and Investment Banking, believes that the index is an important contributor towards providing transparency and encouraging investment to support Africa’s growth.

Since its inception, the index has played a crucial role in informing the decisions of policymakers, investors and regulators across the continent by identifying areas for improvement and development on the region’s financial markets.

“Data included in the Index provides important insights for all stakeholders and supports informed decisions about the development of financial markets,” Russon said.

George Asante, Head of Global Markets for Regional Operations, Absa Corporate and Investment Banking, said 2020 had been an important year for demonstrating the growing resilience of Africa’s financial markets.

For the greater part of 2020, Africa has been pre-occupied by the COVID-19 pandemic and its impact on health and economic outlook.

“However, going forward the importance of continuing to develop its financial markets is going to be greater as the continent looks to attract investment to re-accelerate economic growth,” Asanted said.

– CAJ News

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