Wednesday, August 01, 2007

It Was Always Going To Be South Africa

Though the bidding for the 2010 World Cup saw entries from Egypt, Morocco, and a joint bid from Libya and Tunisia, FIFA always had South Africa earmarked for the continent's first World Cup. The 2010 host is the only country in Africa who, economically, could even remotely come close to putting on the world's biggest show.

This piece from the Economist puts a bright spin on the future, but even if Africa does continue to grow in percentage terms, it's still coming from a pretty low base. Money quote:
African markets are so undeveloped that the opportunity there is still quite small. According to Stanlib, a South African asset-management group, the market capitalisation of the whole continent is just $800 billion, of which South Africa itself makes up $600 billion. The rest of the continent’s markets, in other words, are worth a good deal less than Exxon Mobil. Put another way, China could buy every African quoted company with its foreign-exchange reserves.
In other words, Egypt, Morocco, Libya, and Tunisia: Thanks for trying, don't let the door hit you on your way out.

Into Africa [The Economist]


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