Botswana is one of Africa's most stable countries, attracting the business of many of our clients. It has one of the longest running multi-party democratic systems on the continent. The country also possesses one of the world's highest economic growth rates since its independence in 1966. Botswana boasts the lowest corruption levels in Africa and supplies good quality statistics. Our coverage – using our unique Total Analysis model – ensures that our clients make risk-assessed decisions in Botswana. We keep them informed of the latest market moves and political developments supported by our interactive data and forecasting. They also benefit from in-depth analysis of 11 of Botswana's most important industries as part of our 'top-down' and 'bottom-up' perspective. Our research teams make it easy for you, as our client, to get the results you strive for in Botswana.

Botswana Country Risk

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Core Views:

  • Botswana will see a gradual recovery in real GDP growth over the next five years, supported by private consumption and fixed investment. However, a combination of sluggish mining sector exports and rising capital goods imports will widen the trade deficit, tempering the extent of the growth.

  • Low diamond prices will sustain pressure on Botswana's external accounts over the next year, as export revenues and inward investment remain sluggish. However, a relatively strong reserve position and an investor friendly business environment will ensure these dynamics do not become a lasting drag on the overall health of the economy.

  • A benign outlook for inflation and a change to our monetary policy forecast for South Africa have led us to adjust our forecast for the key policy rate in Botswana downwards. With inflation stable but...

Botswana Operational Risk Coverage (9)

Botswana Operational Risk

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BMI View: Botswana is a politically stable and mature democracy with an established rule of law and the lowest rate of corruption in Africa, offering businesses a protected operating environment. Additionally, companies benefit from a relatively open economy with attractive tax regulations and incentives for foreign investment. However, Botswana also faces the same drawbacks as many of its regional peers, such as a limited access to credit, poor contract enforceability and cumbersome bureaucratic procedures that increase market entry costs. Overall, Botswana scores 52.5 out of 100 in our Trade and Investment Risk Index, in sixth...

Botswana Crime & Security

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BMI View: Businesses face low overall crime and security risks to their operations in Botswana by regional standards, especially compared with immediate neighbours Namibia, Zimbabwe and South Africa. Nevertheless, foreign workers and firms face some risks from petty and violent crime. As such, businesses will still incur some basic costs in order to protect their employees and assets. Businesses remain at risk to financial and cybercrime, even if...

Botswana Labour Market

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BMI View : Employers in Botswana will benefit from the substantial availability of labour with basic skills due to the regionally high youth literacy rates, though the dearth of workers with advanced skills will necessitate the import of foreign labour and investment in training. Long-term labour market risks will be mitigated by the Botswana government's considerable investment in education that will help boost the availability of skilled workers. Vocational skills development is also supported by the large proportion of workers with formal employment, thereby lowering training costs for businesses. Meanwhile, Botswana's relatively developed labour regulations and low labour-related taxes will serve to lower direct labour...

Botswana Logistics

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BMI View: Botswana's dependence on diamond exports in particular underlines the importance of efficient trade connectivity for the country's economy. As a result, the government has invested in a number of initiatives to enhance Botswana's connectivity to regional and international markets, notably in facilities in Namibia's Port of Walvis Bay as well as the expansion and modernisation of the country's rail and road system. Although Botswana's lack of port facilities constitutes a major disadvantage for lowering trade costs and times, these initiatives will facilitate improvements in transport options for foreign businesses. As a result, Botswana scores 36.3 for Logistics Risk, putting it in 17th position out of 48 Sub-Saharan countries, ahead of Mozambique but behind Kenya.

Businesses operating in Botswana benefit from low...

Botswana Trade & Investment

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Botswana is a mature democracy with an established rule of law and the lowest rate of corruption in Africa. Investors benefit from a relatively open economy with attractive tax regulations and incentives for foreign investment. However, Botswana also faces the same drawbacks as many of its regional peers, such as a limited access to credit, poor contract enforceability and cumbersome bureaucratic procedures that increase market entry costs. Overall, Botswana scores 55.7 in the Trade and Investment Risks Index, placing fourth in the region after the Seychelles and 65th in the world.

Botswana is a relatively open country for economic activity due to its market-oriented economy and stable political situation. The government offers generous financial incentives for foreign investors in the shape of tax breaks, low tax rates (corporate tax is 22%), and opportunities for public-private partnerships. In addition, prudent financial planning has...

Botswana Industry Coverage (14)

Botswana Agribusiness

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BMI View: We believe the rising incomes and population of South West Africa will see the region enjoy long-term growth in production in the corn sector. While there will be bumps along the way, we are ultimately predicting the region to see output growth outpace consumption growth over our forecast period to 2019. Meanwhile, in the sugar sector we see production in the key markets of Angola and Zambia beginning to slow over the forecast period as cheap imports from Brazil and China compete with local production.

Key BMI Forecasts

  • Angolan corn production from 2014/15 to 2018/19: 6% to 1.97mn tonnes. Although less than the bumper 2014 crop, we expect above-...

Botswana Agribusiness

BMI View:

BMI View: We believe rising incomes and growing populations in Angola, Botswana and Namibia will see these countries enjoy long-term production growth in the corn sector. While there will be bumps along the way, we are ultimately predicting these countries to see output growth outpace consumption growth over our forecast period to 2020. Meanwhile, in the sugar sector we see Angolan production accelerating over the forecast...

Botswana Autos

BMI View:

BMI View: We forecast a slower rate of growth of 4.3% in the passenger vehicle market in 2016 due to the impact of the import ban placed on older vehicles. The commercial vehicle market looks set to outperform off the back of infrastructure developments with a forecast growth rate of 8.3% in 2016.

Botswana Vehicle Sales By Segment
BMI/Central Statistics Office
  • Commercial vehicles (CV) to outperform passenger vehicles in 2016 with CV's and passenger vehicles forecast to grow by 8.3% and 4.3...

Botswana Commercial Banking

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Commercial Banking Sector Indicators
Date Total assets Client loans Bond portfolio Other Liabilities and capital Capital Client deposits

Botswana Food & Drink

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BMI View: Botswana's food and drink industry will benefit from a recovery in economic growth, boosting the positive consumer outlook for 2016. Rising household spending will fuel strong growth in food and drink spending through to the end of our forecast period in 2020. Growing food retailing expansion will further support our positive outlook for Botswana's consumer market, encouraged by low operational risks and stable political conditions.

Food and Drink Spending

Botswana Infrastructure

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BMI View: Botswana's construction industry, especially the infrastructure sector, is heading into a period of sustained growth on the back of continued investment in the mining sector and the development of associated transport and power infrastructure. Additionally, the latest stimulus measures announced by the government may provide some upside to growth rates.

Latest Updates And Structural Trends

  • We expect construction industry real growth to accelerate to 6.9% in 2016, following a weak 3.2% in 2015.

  • Growth will be driven by government stimulus efforts and a recovery in mining sector investment as commodity prices begin to slowly rise, following a bottoming this year.

  • ...

Botswana Insurance

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BMI View: Botswana's insurance market is small by regional and global standards, though the life sector has grown rapidly in recent years and emerged as an important conduit for organised savings. Both the life and non life sectors are expected to grow rapidly over the forecast period, bolstered by growing demand for motor and property insurance and by wider economic growth. Low average household income levels will continue to hamper growth, however, and while financial inclusion is rising at least one quarter of the adult population either does not understand the benefits of insurance or cannot afford it.

Headline Insurance Forecasts (Botswana 2012-2019)

Botswana Mining

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BMI View: Botswana's mining industry has considerable potential, with sizeable mineral deposits complemented by a stable political climate and supportive regulatory environment.

Botswana Mining Industry Value Forecast (2015-2020)
2015e 2016f 2017f 2018f 2019f ...

Botswana Pharmaceuticals & Healthcare

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BMI View: Botswana's pharmaceutical market will remain of little interest to multinational drugmakers. Despite a relatively attractive business environment, multinational drugmakers will continue to use South Africa as the main channel trough which medicines are imported into the country, and will be unlikely to establish a direct manufacturing presence.

Headline Expenditure Projections

  • Pharmaceuticals: BWP1.87bn (USD185mn) in 2015 to BWP2.07bn (USD193mn) in 2016; +10.8% in local currency terms and 4.4% in US dollar terms. Forecast downgraded from Q416.

  • Healthcare: BWP8.35bn (USD824mn) in...

Botswana Power

BMI View:

BMI View: Botswana will remain a net electricity importer throughout our forecast period until 2024 due to an underperforming power sector and constant delays to the construction of power plants. Increased interest by IPPs will be the result of government seeking to address current power issues.

Headline Power Forecasts (Botswana 2014-2020)
2014e 2015f 2016f 2017f 2018f ...

Botswana Retail

BMI View:

BMI View: Following a sharp slowdown in 2015, Botswana's economic activity will accelerate in 2016. Fuelled by the government's stimulus programme, private consumption will be the main driver of growth, resulting in the robust expansion of household spending. Nonetheless, two major headwinds remain for the retail sector: elevated unemployment and sharp currency depreciation.

Headline Household Spending
e/f = BMI estimate/forecast. Source: Botswana...

Botswana Telecommunications

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BMI View : BMI 's Southern Africa report analyses the latest industry, regulatory and macroeconomic developments in the telecoms markets in Angola, Botswana, Mozambique, Mauritius and Namibia. It also contains our estimates based on the latest market data and updated five-year forecasts to 2020 for the mobile, fixed-line and broadband sectors. From the five states, Mauritius and Mozambique stand out as dynamic and higher performing markets in terms of penetration and 3G/4G developments along with growth rates.

Latest Updates & Industry Developments

  • Important downward revisions were made to Angola's...

Botswana Telecommunications

BMI View:

BMI View: We maintain a cautiously optimistic outlook for the Botswana and Namibia mobile markets in our latest annual forecast update. Out to 2020, we are of the opinion that the smaller size of these markets will subdue absolute organic growth prospects in terms of new subscribers. However, growth in the markets will be driven by the uptake of 3G/4G technologies in both the countries. We have a negative outlook regarding the Namibian telecoms market due to the government majority ownership of both mobile carriers and the fixed-line provider. A lack of private investment stifles innovation in the absence of competition. Botswana benefits from the presence of strong international carriers and...

Botswana Tourism

BMI View:

BMI View: Strong expansion of tourism arrivals to Botswana from European source markets will help to offset slower growth in inbound travel from Botswana's regional neighbours, including South Africa and Zimbabwe where economic growth has declined in recent months. Botswana offers substantial growth potential as a tourism destination, benefiting from a broad range of eco tourism attractions and strong travel connections to regional travel hubs in South Africa, however domestic transport and accommodation infrastructure remains underdeveloped which will dampen growth prospects over the short to medium term.

Key Forecasts...

Latest Botswana Articles

  • The integration of IoT and big data technology in agriculture will pick up ...

  • BTCL and beMobile lack the financial and technological expertise to adequat...

  • We have revised our price forecasts downward and now believe that CBOT whea...

Latest Botswana Blogs

Latest Botswana Podcasts

  • Despite another tough year for the global mining sector, BMI expects p...

  • The increasingly important economic relationship between Asia and Sub-...

  • This week, Risk Watchdog discusses beneficiation in the mining sector ...


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