Angola passes law to attract foreign investment

Angola on Thursday passed a law scrapping rules that previously forced foreign investors to partner with local firms, as President Joao Lourenco tries to revive the oil-dependant economy.

Lourenco has vowed to pull in foreign investment after he succeeded Jose Eduardo dos Santos, who had ruled Angola for 38 years, in September.

The new law ended a minimum investment level of  $230 000, and the requirement that at least 35% of the capital had to come from Angolan partners.

“The law effectively eliminates the obligation on national citizens participating” in private investment, Finance Minister Pedro Luis da Fonseca told lawmakers.

The law was passed unanimously by parliament with the backing of opposition parties.

Lourenco promised an “economic miracle” in Angola after the nation was badly hit by the drop in oil prices.

During the country’s oil boom, Dos Santos was accused of corruption and enriching a small elite, including his own family, while millions of Angolans remained in dire poverty.

Lourenco, a veteran of the ruling MPLA party and previously a loyal minister under Dos Santos, has moved to tackle state corruption and nepotism since taking over.

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