DP World CEO claims Africa should remove trade barriers for economic development
Sultan Ahmed Bin Sulayem, the Chairman and CEO of DP World Group, attended the Africa Emergence Conference 2019 in Senegal’s capital city, Dakar.
During the event, the CEO revealed what he thinks will help advance Africa’s economy.
According to Bin Sulayem, the removal of barriers and increased connectivity between nations and infrastructure development cold aid the continent’s success.
“We believe in the viability of Africa, we believe in investing in the continent during our investment in Senegal we improved efficiency and volumes 135 percent in 10 years,” stated Bin Sulayem.
“The Removal of trade barriers is very important. In Africa tariffs are 50% higher in than in Latin America and Asia,” he said. “Intra regional trade in Africa is only 12% while in Europe, Asia and Latin America is over 50%, we need to improve this to prosper,” he added.
The CEO addressed the conference whilst on a panel with the President of Snegal, Macky Sal, and the Prime Minister of Malaysia, Mahatir Mohammed.
“We believe in connecting landlocked nations to the world and international markets. Our logistics park in Rwanda will reduce costs across the country and region.”
“The Price of container moving from Shanghai to an East African port is anywhere between USD $500 to USD$1000, the price of same container from the port to Kigali is USD$5000,” he added
"What the CEO said is the truth, in Senegal we have experienced a change because DP World was present before I became President with a concession of 25 years at the Port of Dakar,” added President Macky Sall.
“Country stability is essential but also the stability of the contracts between the a state and the private sector to develop foreign investment. It is evident that the public investment cannot satisfy the basic needs of the population so we need to work with private sector,” he added.
5 minutes with... Janthana Kaenprakhamroy, CEO, Tapoly
Founder and CEO of award-winning insurtech firm Tapoly, Janthana Kaenprakhamroy heads up Europe’s first on-demand insurance platform for the gig economy, winning industry awards, innovating in the digital insurance space, and leading with inclusivity.
Here, Business Chief talks to Janthana about her leadership style and skills.
What do you do, in a nutshell?
I’m founder and CEO of Tapoly, a digital MGA providing a full stack of commercial lines insurance specifically for SMEs and freelancers, as well as a SaaS solution to connect insurers with their distribution partners. We build bespoke, end-to-end platforms encompassing the whole customer journey, but can also integrate our APIs within existing systems. We were proud to win Insurance Provider of the Year at the British Small Business Awards 2018 and receive silver in the Insurtech category at the Efma & Accenture Innovation in Insurance Awards 2019.
How would you describe your leadership style?
I try to be as inclusive a leader as possible. I’m committed to creating space for everyone to shine. Many of the roles at Tapoly are performed by women and I speak at industry events to encourage more people to get involved in insurance/insurtech. Similarly, I always try to maintain a growth mindset. I think it’s important to retain values to support learning and development, like reliability, working hard and punctuality.
What’s the best leadership advice you’ve received?
Build your network and seek advice. As a leader, you need smart people around you to help you grow your business. It’s not about personally being the best, but being able to find resources and get help where needed.
How do you see leadership changing in a COVID world?
I think the pandemic has proven the importance of inclusive leadership so that everyone feels supported and valued. It’s also shown the importance of being flexible as a leader. We’ve had to remain adaptable to continue delivering high levels of customer service. This flexibility has also been important when supporting employees as everyone has had individual pressures to deal with during this time. Leaders should continue to embed this flexibility within their organisations moving forward.
They say ‘from every crisis comes opportunity’, what opportunities do you see?
The past year has been challenging, but it has also proven the importance of digital transformation in insurance. When working from home was required, it was much harder for insurers to adjust who had not embedded technology within their operating processes because they did not have data stored in the cloud and it caused communication delays with concerned customers at a time when this communication should have been a priority, which ultimately impacts the level of customer satisfaction. This demonstrates the importance of what we are trying to achieve at Tapoly in driving digitalisation in insurance and making communication between insurers and distribution partners seamless.
What advice would you give to your younger self just starting out in the industry?
Start sooner, don’t be afraid to take (calculated) risks and make sure you raise enough money to get you through the initial seed stage.