Like many global business leaders, Ken Allen, Chief Executive Officer of global express and logistics provider, DHL Express, has also expressed his opinion on Africa’s immense potential for investments.
According to Allen, “Much has been said around Africa’s potential and, while it currently only contributes 3 percent of the global GDP, it is still the fastest growing continent. We have seen positive economic indicators from countries across Sub-Saharan Africa – Nigeria, Cote d’Ivoire, Ghana, Kenya, Mozambique and Uganda to name a few”.
The CEO is in Sub-Saharan Africa to visit countries including Zambia, Kenya, Ethiopia and South Africa, as the operator continues to expand into the continent and increase its already vast footprint into the far-flung, rural areas.
Allen’s visit follows the March 5th announcement by Deutsche Post DHL that the DHL Express division made an earnings before interest and tax (EBIT) contribution of $1.44 billion in 2012, a 21 percent improvement over 2011.
He is also upbeat about commerce in Africa and eager to use this proven global business approach to further entrench DHL in the continent, spurring on trade and connecting the markets to increase the continent’s global competitiveness.
He continues, “The major challenge for Africa and, primarily for us as logistics operators, is to improve infrastructure – whether this is road infrastructure or air capacity. Current road conditions are responsible for approximately 40 percent of transport costs in coastal countries and 60 percent in landlocked countries, and we know that transport costs can make up 50 to 75 percent of the actual retail price of goods in countries such as Malawi, Rwanda and Uganda. We are currently transporting over 80 percent of our cargo by air, which can be between 3 and 9 times more expensive than road or rail. For Africa to become competitive, this situation needs urgent review, with a strong focus on the developments of the transport infrastructure.”
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