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The potential of African markets is clear, yet trade with the continent often faces challenges, notably in securing finance. The gap in trade finance within Africa is currently estimated at approximately $81 billion and is on the rise, due to the common view among investors that African trade carries a high risk.

A recent study by the specialist trade finance bank BACB explores whether this perception matches the actual situation and presents arguments for adopting a constructive stance towards finance in Africa. 

This approach emphasises transparency, effective risk management, and adherence to stringent regulatory standards.

The paper, “Unlocking African opportunities: a specialist bank’s approach to safe, sustainable trade”,  was launched today in Cape Town. 

The study provides an in-depth analysis of the distinct challenges associated with trading in specialised markets and outlines how banks can address these risks through thorough transaction monitoring and rigorous due diligence. 

Additionally, BACB shares several case studies to demonstrate how the bank has facilitated key trade flows in countries such as Libya, Nigeria, and Mauritania.

“Like any other region, Africa presents a unique set of risks,” stated CEO Paul Jennings. 

“However, these challenges can be managed and overcome. The correct strategy for engaging in safe, sustainable commerce in these areas extends beyond mere compliance with risk regulations; it requires a profound knowledge and understanding of the local conditions. As a specialist bank, our established connections with the markets we work in enable us to offer a customised approach to trade in Africa.”

Damian Austin, Chief Banking Officer, said, “Banks such as BACB can lend credibility to trade movements and narrow the gap of understanding between cautious investors and the continent’s promising markets. By releasing another leading piece of research, we aim to furnish international financiers and traders with essential insights. We also shed light on our transaction monitoring processes as part of our commitment to fostering best practices throughout Africa.”