Why Africa’s top CEOs are so hyped on Côte d’Ivoire — Quartz Africa

Côte d’Ivoire is reclaiming its reputation as a top investment destination in Francophone Africa, and on the continent as a whole.

That’s according to the 2022 CEO Barometer Survey recently released at the Africa CEO Forum in Abidjan, an event that brought together close to 2,000 political, business, and thought leaders. The forum is the largest annual gathering of Africa’s private sector.

The report, issued by Deloitte in partnership with the Africa CEO Forum, ranks Côte d’Ivoire first in attractiveness (link in French) as an investment destination, followed by Ghana and Nigeria. Despite challenges brought by the pandemic and the war in Ukraine, 78% of the 200 CEOs interviewed said they are confident in the prospects for their sectors.

Why do business in Côte d’Ivoire?

From its independence in 1960 up until its first and second civil wars (2002-2007 and 2010-2011), Côte d’Ivoire was a regional powerhouse, with a strong economy that relied heavily on exporting agricultural commodities for its growth. But during those years of conflict, and afterwards, financing opportunities grew scarcer, and many businesses left the country for safer regional hubs.

More recently, companies have started to move back thanks to political stability, and thanks to government policies designed to attract them. “In the past six years, everything has changed,” says Astou Dia, the Senegalese co-founder of startup accelerator Impact Hub Abidjan and a founder at business advisory firm A to A Partners. Dia says Côte d’Ivoire is becoming a natural growth market for startups from Nigeria, Ghana, Senegal and other parts of the region; the country has the largest population and largest economy in Francophone west Africa.

Indeed, high-profile CEOs aren’t the only leaders eyeing the country. Alloysius Attah, co-founder and CEO of Farmerline, is just one example of an entrepreneur whose startup is expanding into Côte d’Ivoire. Attah’s Ghana-based ag-tech firm is using

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