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Doing Business with Botswana: Opportunities for Indian Investors

by Diplomatist Bureau - 13 August, 2021, 12:00 296 Views 0 Comment

Botswana has a number of key priority sectors that Indian investors could tap into. These among others include Business Process Outsourcing (BPO), Agribusiness and Food Processing, Financial Technology (Fintech) and general Manufacturing with a deliberate bias towards Automotive Components and Parts.

Agriculture

Botswana is a net food importing country with prospects to boost the production of basic commodities, which presents an opportunity for investors in this sector. There are therefore opportunities to invest in almost all agriculture sub-sector value chains, as the bulk of the country’s massive import bill of roughly US1 Billion comes from processed commodities, indicating an urgent need for value addition through the establishment of processing centres in the country.

Other opportunities exist in the grain storage facilities across the country to reduce post-harvest losses, as well as facilitate the development of the local private seed production sector to substitute for the 27 000 tons annual seed imports valued at USD10.9 million.

There is a need to establish processing plants across the country to facilitate the import substitution process in chicken meat which stands at around USD3 million annually, as well as commercial production of small stock for export to the Asian and EU market. There is also the dairy sub-sector with the annual local milk production accounting for only 15 percent of the national demand.

And finally, opportunities exist in Horticulture where local production currently satisfies 54 percent of the national demand, and the rest augmented through an annual import bill of USD63 million. There is also Fruit Tree production where citrus is estimated to be around 17 percent of the local demand, and Aquaculture, as well as Ostrich farming, to take advantage of our EU certified export abattoir.

Financial Services Sector

Botswana aims to establish itself as a regional hub for financial services and business process outsourcing that offers an exemption on withholding and tax rebate for training costs to investors.

Opportunities, therefore, exist in the overall development and expansion of the payments ecosystem, facilitation of low-cost accessible savings products, digital payment platforms, cross-border remittances, development of accessible risk mitigation products and investment products for pensioners, collections and e-commerce space.

Manufacturing

Opportunities in this sector include the manufacturing of automotive components and parts to further drive Botswana’s industrialization prospects. Botswana has identified automotive components and parts as a priority area for investment to supply both regional and international markets. Existing raw materials such as leather for example allows for opportunities to design leather car seats amongst others.

The Automotive components sub-sector provides for new entrants to supply parts and components to South Africa’s automotive sector, supply of replacement parts for vehicles of large scale projects, expansion of existing component manufacturing industries, R&D services, diversification of after-sales services for private and commercial vehicles and the establishment of skills development and training facilities for auto mechanics and technicians.

Mining and Mineral Beneficiation

Mining of base metals, such as gold, uranium, copper, nickel, coal, manganese and mining services also present opportunities for prospecting, new mining projects including beneficiation that may link with other sectors.

Information Communication Technology (ICT) and Innovation

Botswana seeks to position herself as a knowledge-based economy driven by research, innovation and technology. Some of the opportunities include Innovative money operations, e-Waste, TV Broadcasting, e-Health, BPO and Call Centres and e-Commerce, software and app development and ICT in agriculture.

Health

Some of the investment opportunities include diagnostic facilities (imaging and laboratory), pharmaceutical manufacturing, manufacturing of biomedical equipment and medical tourism.

Cargo, Freight and Logistics

Botswana’s geographical positioning makes it a perfect gateway to access the Southern African Development Community (SADC) region making the country ideal to establish logistics hubs for consolidation, deconsolidation, distribution, transport services, handling, warehouse management and integrated systems.

Education

Photographic safari tourism training, mining and energy technical schools, medical and health sciences institutions, business schools, lifelong training institutions and education services for special needs students.

MARKET ACCESS

Botswana is at the centre of the Southern African Development Community and (SADC), with access to a market of 16 countries that has a combined GDP of more than US$725 billion. SADC’s Free Trade Area (FTA) launched in 2008 provides zero tariffs for at least 85% of goods traded among member states. As a member of the Southern African Customs Union (SACU), Botswana’s products enjoy duty-free access to a market of more than 61 million people in five countries with a combined GDP of more than US$60 billion.

The African Continental Free Trade Area (AfCFTA) agreement further opens the door to an estimated 1.3 billion people across Africa, with a combined gross domestic product (GDP) of $3.4 trillion. The AfCFTA is expected to boost intra African trade and Botswana is looking to explore her geographical position to establish the country as a launchpad for new investments that are looking to create a supply chain for this robust market.

Botswana is also eligible for trade benefits with the US under the African Growth and Opportunity Act (AGOA) and enjoys duty-free quota, free market access into the EU under the SADC-EPA agreement.

For more inquiries on doing business or investment in Botswana, please contact:

Telephone: +1146537000

Email: botind@gov.bw

Mr. Moabi Phia, Commercial Attaché – phiam@bitcin.co.in

Ms. Chenesani Asa, Political & Economic – ckobokobo@gov.bw

Ms. Tshepang Sethantsho, Political & Economic -tsethantsho@gov.bw

BUSINESS AND INVESTOR VISA INFORMATION

Kindly note that Indian nationals are required visa to enter Botswana. Visa applications are submitted by mail or in person at Botswana High Commission in New Delhi for consideration.

 Business visa requirement

Prospective investors, entrepreneurs or traders are eligible for business visas to visit and/ or explore business opportunities in Botswana. Business activities may include; consulting with business associates, attending a scientific, educational, professional, or business convention/conference, and negotiating a contract.

Requirements include; Certificate of incorporation, Business profile/ letter of invitation from the host organization, Trading license, Schedule of meetings, Bank statement, and a Business invitation letter.

Investment visa

Investment visa is issued to business people who regularly visit Botswana being Directors of companies domiciled in the country. The visa will be issued to individuals who have investments in Botswana.

Requirements include Certificate of incorporation, Business profile, Trading license, Schedule of meetings, Bank statement, Share certificate, List of Directors, Copies of work and residence permits.

*Visa application form can be downloaded at www.botswanahighcom.in website under the ‘Consular section’.

**For more information about visas you may contact Botswana High Commission at:

Telephone: +1146537000

Email: botind@gov.bw; tsebopelo@gov.bw

 

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