Done well, corporate investment in volatile countries can have a positive impact – but companies need to first understand the risks

SABMiller’s brewery in South Sudan is struggling and may face closure within weeks. This news is perhaps not surprising. Ethnic tensions and political discord have plagued the region for decades. Since civil unrest resurfaced in December 2013, over 10,000 people have been killed and 2 million displaced. Inflation and raw material shortages have also soared.

The global brewer, which owns brands such as Pilsner Urquell and Foster’s, is unusual in choosing to invest in South Sudan, a country so unstable that it’s been described as a “war economy”. While SABMiller did not wish to comment for this article, it’s not unreasonable to presume its decision to invest in Sudan was motivated by economic interests: consumers the world over like beer and, in South Sudan, a 25-year ban on alcohol ended shortly before SABMiller invested six years ago.

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Source: The Guardian Circular Economy RSS