Accountants rate Africa highly, keep an eye on China
Posted Sunday, July 29 2012 at 16:51
Africa’s economic recovery has remained stable with bright prospects as the global economic recovery remains slow in the first half of 2012, according to a worldwide survey of financial professionals.
The Global Economic Conditions Survey (GECS), for the second quarter of 2012, showed an overall improvement in business conditions in the region on the back of improved business revenues, an increase in capital spending in the last three quarters and less layoffs.
The survey undertaken by ACCA (the Association of Chartered Certified Accountants), and IMA (the Institute of Management Accountants) said Africa remained optimistic but watchful of unfolding events in China whose slowing economy had dominated world business headlines.
“Respondents in Africa were the most confident of the state of the global economy with 34 per cent reporting confidence gains, down from 39 per cent three months earlier,” said Anthony Kariuki, ACCA Kenya country manager.
Nigeria emerged as the top performer in Africa over the last nine months, with Malawi performing well in early 2012.
The worldwide survey of 2,700 accountants showed growth across the world’s most developed economies stalled and the global economy is fragile as it has been over the last three years, with the economic slowdown of China being a major factor.
“The point now is to see how far and how fast the Chinese slowdown will travel. Our members in Africa tend to feel any fallout from Asia fairly quickly and there could be implications for other markets which trade with China,” said Manos Schizas, a senior economic analyst with ACCA and the survey editor.
“Finance professionals who responded were quite at ease with the prospect of austerity until mid-2010. Then the recovery failed to take off and everything changed.”