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How innovation in Angola is helping its economy thrive despite Covid-19

The south-west African country of Angola has been turning to innovative solutions to help safeguard its economy during the coronavirus outbreak.

In this week's Business Angola, Dailyrater' Serge Rombi finds out more about its successful strategy.

As of Tuesday the 7 of July, the World Health Organisation (WHO) recorded 19 deaths in Angola as a result of Covid-19.

The country has around 30 million inhabitants, about the same population as Canada, which has recorded nearly 9,000 deaths as a result of coronavirus, according to WHO statistics.

Measures Angola has taken to help contain the virus include the widespread use of masks and rapid response effort, like opening a field hospital on an industrial site in record time.

Antonio Henriques da Silva, the head of the Investment and Export Promotion Agency of Angola, said: "When we see our reality and how we coped with the situation, we can definitely say that we have been so far successfull. And in a humble manner we can say we managed to do this because we followed in an organised way directions that were given by the Government. We took it seriously.

"I am very proud of what has been done in Angola during the crisis but I am also very proud of what has been happening in Angola for the two last years, in terms of getting Angola back to track.

"There is a sense of hope. But through hard work, being honest and also to make the country get rid of corruption and mobilising ourselves to the development efforts, which is not just a government task, but it’s a national task," he added.

Mr Henriques da Silva also talked to Dailyrater about the country's various assets that attract investors, including its agricultural sector.

"We have like 53 million hectares of arable land. Out of it, only 4 or 5 million has been used. So that is huge potential. It’s not only there for business people that are already in Angola, but it’s also an investment opportunity," he said.

Angola's agricultural sector is just one example, it also has a thriving tourism industry and in-demand water resources.

"The private sector, investors need to come to our country and effectively see that we are not just a land of opportunities but we are also working very hard in adjusting our institutions and the way we work to those standards that are seen as good references for projects and investment in a country, in an economy," Mr Mr Henriques da Silva added.

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