Challenges and Prospects of Attracting Inward Investment into Swaziland

Patricia N. Joubert

Abstract


This article is based on an empirical study on challenges experienced in inward investment attraction. This is mainly because a country’ ability to attract investment to a large extent determines its economic prosperity and its competitiveness particularly in a globalised context most countries compete for investors who have wide options to go to any country of their choice. The study objectives focused on the following: 1) Challenges and prospects for increasing inward investment in Swaziland; 2) Identification of measures used in attracting inward investment and potential gaps in fulfilling intended objectives; and 3) Establishment of potential strategies for encouraging inward investment. The study revealed significant gaps pertaining to the political and the general investment climate. Other gaps identified pertained to the regulatory policies, high labour costs, limited investment incentives, limited scale of economic and technological development, limitations in market access and in infrastructural support. The study therefore stresses the need for improvements on these key aspects of investment. Most of the findings are in line with those revealed by other research studies except for the extent of pervasiveness of these problems. What is peculiar to Swaziland is the type of interventions in place to promote investment. These interventions are not competitive; rather they duplicate what others in developing countries that have not succeeded have done. The study suggests that Swaziland needs to identify areas in which it can have a competitive advantage, which in turn can help it present a unique positive country brand loyalty.

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