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Africa Renewal

The Africa Renewal magazine examines the many issues that confront the people of Africa, its leaders and its international partners: sustainable development goals, economic reform, debt, education, health, women's empowerment, conflict and civil strife, democratization, investment, trade, regional integration and many other topics. It tracks policy debates. It provides expert analysis and on-the-spot reporting to show how those policies affect people on the ground. And, it highlights the views of policy-makers, non-governmental leaders and others actively involved in efforts to transform Africa and improve its prospects in the world today. The magazine also reports on and examines the many different aspects of the United Nations’ involvement in Africa, especially within the framework of the New Partnership for Africa’s Development (NEPAD).

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Foreign investors eye African consumers

It was an unlikely move greeted with a good measure of disbelief. When the world’s biggest retail company, the US-based Walmart, announced in September 2010 a plan to buy South Africa’s Massmart — also a retail company — for a staggering $4.2 bn, eyebrows were raised. Foreign investors in Africa usually put their money in the riches that lie beneath its soil, where the profits are higher. In fact, the steady growth of foreign direct investment (FDI) flows to the continent during most of the past decade has mostly been concentrated in extractive sectors, especially oil (see Africa Renewal, January 2005).

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