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Citadel makes the case for African investments

Private equity has a vital role to play in unlocking Africa’s potential as a global economic player, a senior Citadel Capital executive told business leaders and government officials at a gathering in Sharm El-Sheikh on Monday.

“The Comesa countries have natural competitive advantages that leading private equity players such as ourselves look to unlock as we link national producers to regional markets and regional hubs to the global economy,” said Amr El-Barbary, managing director at Citadel Capital, a private equity firm in the Middle East and Africa.
 
El-Barbary participated in a session that looked into the benefits of private equity investment in Africa at the third Comesa Investment Forum. The two-day meeting, which took place in Sharm El-Sheikh, Egypt on April 12-13 in collaboration with the Egyptian Ministry of Investment, gave industry leaders the opportunity to engage one-on-one with ministers, key policy makers and business leaders from 19 Comesa member states.
 
Sessions included discussions on the future economic growth of Africa with a special focus on key sectors such as infrastructure, agriculture and agribusiness.
 
“Citadel Capital has always been attracted to markets that have competitive advantages offered by large, fast-growing populations that translate into sizable skilled workforces and substantial consumer markets,” said El-Barbary. “Many of them are proximal to important export markets. We see legacies of inefficiency and fragmented markets that can be redressed by smart private-sector players with the vision, capital and management talent to create new engines of economic growth. All of these are, in one way or another, characteristics of the African markets we’re now exploring.”

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