Global strategic consultancy firm Control Risks has ranked Zimbabwe as the riskiest country in Africa for doing business, according to NewsDay.
Citing a report that the company compiled together with Oxford Economics Africa, the daily wrote that the southern African nation also has the least score of reward after investment.
“The position of each country is defined by its risk and reward score. Zimbabwe is at 7.65% risk and at 2.53% reward scores,” NewsDay wrote on September 22, quoting The Africa Risk-Reward Index 2023.
The index illustrates the evolution of the investment landscape in major African markets and provides a grounded, longer-term outlook of key trends shaping investment in these economies. It also offers a comparative snapshot of market opportunities and risks across the continent.
Zimbabwe has battled an economic crisis since 2000 after its government seized land from white farmers and reallocated it to blacks. This damaged the lifeline agriculture sector. The West responded to the farm seizures by imposing sanctions.
Other countries that ranked poorly in the report include Ethiopia at 7.64%, Democratic Republic of Congo at 7.53%, Cameroon at 6.53%, Uganda at 6.22% and Egypt at 6.3%.
“These countries are those that have seen the biggest positive movement in their overall risk-reward scores between 2022 and 2023. For some countries this is due to increasing reward scores, for some to declining risk scores, and for some a combination of both,” the report added.
A Zimbabwean analyst posited that one of the reasons for the country’s low score is its history of disputed elections.
“The global markets and capital have adopted a wait-and-see attitude towards Zimbabwe. It is unfortunate that the country continues to hold disputed and inconclusive elections,” Romeo Chasara told the daily.
The southern African nation held a general election on August 23 and 24, 2023 which the incumbent, Emmerson Mnangagwa won with 53%. Main opposition leader, Nelson Chamisa, who got 44% of the vote rejected the outcome, alleging irregularities.