The International Monetary Fund (IMF), economic growth in Sub-Saharan Africa in 2014 is expected to be slightly higher than of that in 2013, at around 6 percent according to a senior DHL official. This growth, coupled with the more than one billion consumers on the continent who spend $600 billion annually, as well as having the fastest growing middle class in the world, and the significant opportunity that connecting with the world represents, provides African small and medium enterprises (SMEs) with boundless opportunities in 2014.
According to Charles Brewer, MD of DHL Express SSA SMEs are clearly the growth engine for Africa and the critical driver for sustainable economic growth. Â€œAccording to Deloitte, Africa's middle class has tripled over the last 30 years, and the current trajectory suggests that the African middle class will grow to 1.1 billion in 2060. As African economies are some of the fastest growing in the world, the outlook for the continent is very positive going forwardÂ€ Brewer said. Brewer said that other than the usual challenges which SMEs are likely to face in Africa, such as infrastructure challenges, customs regulations and controls, access to finance may be an obstacle going forward.
In his opinion, the more an SME can tap into global opportunities and the more it can look into global expansion, the better the chances for growth become.