Published On: Thu, Feb 26th, 2015

Investment executive urges financiers to forego local risks



ACCRA – ECOBANK Group Chief Executive Officer, Albert Essien, urged investors to engage with African countries on a long-term basis and avoid abrupt changes in investment over perceived instability in certain markets.

He has given the keynote address in Munich, Germany at the fourth Conference on Managing Risk in Africa.

Essien offered strategies for managing risk in Africa’s growth markets.

He advised investors against viewing Africa as one, but rather 54 countries with different growth prospects, different infrastructure, trade agreements, tax regulations, culture and levels of technological development.

Essien highlighted several market entry dangers, which he enumerated as political risk, reputational risk, operational risk and physical risk to staff and assets.

He encouraged scenario planning as a good way to anticipate what future trends might emerge and what their impact and probability might be.

“Whatever risks are identified, they are best viewed holistically rather than in isolation.

“New market entrants will need to develop a clear risk appetite and weigh the opportunity against the cost of risk mitigation, which can be expensive,” Essien said.

The Ecobank executive advised setting up a risk review board with participation from senior management, and said this would help ensure the right level and scope of ongoing risk monitoring.

– CAJ News

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