ASIAN COMPANIES INVESTING MORE IN AFRICA, MIDEAST

Asian companies are likely to accelerate their investments in Africa and the Middle East in the wake of new policies announced by the Trump Administration in the United States, experts say.

Asia’s new money will look at alternatives if there is any negative impact of the Trump Administration on the Asian exploration, production and trading mining space, a panel of mining experts said at the 2017 African Mining Indaba underway in Cape Town this week.

They say Asian companies are looking to increase investments in resource and commodity driven economies on the continent.

We are all trying to figure out what the new impact of the president will be in the US on the mining side as there has been an overriding of some regulations which are very prohibitive over the on-going expansion of coal mines but at the same time we have also seen regulatory reviews in the gas and oil sectors. I think in the US we are going to see a higher production of resources, said XCoal Resources Chief Executive Officer Ernie Thrasher.

Analysts say the current conservative American policy could pose a threat to the strength of Asian investments and trade abroad.

What the current American situation which is looking more on domestic production inside the US is going to do is a restructuring of political alliances internationally going forward going to be different than the alliances that we have had in the past,” said Intrasia Capital Chief Executive Officer Graeme Robertson..

“China, Indonesia, Japan, South Korea will have a far more significant influence in world affairs and this will also be in mining and investment because Asia 25 years ago was equivalent to what Africa is today. So Asian money is looking at new direction and you see the influence of that into Africa.

He said the US had never had a major influence on African mining investments. The investment coming into Africa is Chinese, in Mozambique its Japanese, there is South Korean money coming in and, interestingly, a lot of Indonesia money is coming in and one should never under-estimate.

Roberston said many parts of Africa remain desirable for Asian companies wanting to invest in mining. East Africa is a key area because it faces the Indian Ocean and English is a general language and not many Asians speak French but also places like Ghana from a Singapore perspective we are engaging with Senegal and Ivory Coast.

The Global Head of Copper at Noble Resources, Sariel Polatinsky, said there are opportunities in Africa and the Middle East. We see more opportunity for instance in other regions less mature for instance in the Middle East, South East Asia, Africa, China but we need to see what the plan for China is moving forward.

China has been the dominant investor in Africa’s mining sector over the last few years, particularly during the downturn in commodity prices. Africa has enough mineral resources to meet the needs of the resource-hungry economies of China and the rest of Asia. Analysts expect mining investments in the continent to grow over the next few years.

Source: NAM NEWS NETWORK