Authors: Abebe Workneh
Abstract: In view of the increasing international interest to do business with Africa, the paper provides analysis on the level of preparedness, and peculiar challenges facing Africa in conducting an effective commercial diplomacy. Increasing research is being done on commercial diplomacy in general and in the context of industrial countries. In the exception of South Africa, very little attention has been devoted to research on commercial diplomacy of Africa. The author wants to narrow this gap. Given its role on wealth creation through matching resources to investors, technology and markets, the author addresses general and specific challenges that have to be tackled for African commercial diplomacy to be able both attract and make the continent benefit fully from the newly enhanced international investments and trade. Some of the challenges, such as image building and media campaign, are beyond individual African nation's capacity and can only be most effectively addressed by a pan-African (collective) approach. The issues and challenges are identified and discussed based on practical industry experience as well as theoretical research.
Keywords: commercial diplomacy; Africa; challenges; poverty reduction; economic globalisation; international trade; international investment; image building; media campaigns; pan-African approach; collective approach; wealth creation.
International Journal of Diplomacy and Economy, 2012 Vol.1 No.2, pp.177 - 192
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