by AKANI CHAUKE
JOHANNESBURG, (CAJ News) – AFRICA needs pragmatic free market policies to attract capital into its gas markets.
This is according to an industry executive as rising government expenditure, burdensome regulations and the lack of infrastructure to move Africa’s energy to grow markets undermine investor confidence in many local countries.
“While capital investment in other regions has increased, it has decreased vastly in Africa,” said NJ Ayuk, head of the African Energy Chamber.
“Competition for capital investment in the global LNG (liquefied natural gas) industry is fierce and for countries that want their resources to be monetized locally and internationally, a number of factors need to be considered and must be done so quickly.”
Ayuk said rising government expenditure, burdensome regulations and the lack of infrastructure to move Africa’s energy to grow markets were all undermining investor confidence in many African countries.
“This is negatively affecting exploration projects and even our ability to attract the capital needed to create jobs, implement the AfCTA (African Continental Free Trade Area) and push for Africa wide prosperity.”
Ayuk said the continent was well-placed to become a key global supplier of LNG.
Mozambique, Nigeria, Equatorial Guinea, Senegal, and Tanzania are potential players.
“But we have to be honest, Africa is falling behind,” the executive said.
– CAJ News