Untapped continent

Bankers are jockeying for the next sovereign debt in Africa, shedding long-held wariness of the region


FIVE men in dark business suits gathered before Maria Kiwanuka in a semicircle. They were international bankers and they had a pitch to make.

Ms Kiwanuka, Uganda's finance minister, was sitting up on a small riser, her bright pink and gold dress a sharp contrast to the men's suits.

Bankers are jockeying for the next sovereign debt deal in Africa, a continent that foreign investors have long been wary of for its economic woes, rampant poverty and political instability. Now that narrative is changing, and one sub-Saharan nation after another is jumping into the debt market.

The Ebola outbreak, which is ravaging West Africa, could cost US$33 billion, the World Bank estimated, prompting worries...

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