Phiwe Hlatshwayo, a policy advocate, highlighted Africa’s sports industry’s potential to drive economic growth and development, valuing it at over $5 billion in 2023 as she gave her homespun take on “the business of sports in Africa” at the #IATF 2023 in Cairo, Egypt.
She emphasized sports’ transformative role in shaping Africa’s future, highlighting its role in social cohesion, equality, economic growth, and international cooperation.
Hlatshwayo highlighted the significant economic impact of sports, citing South Africa’s 2010 World Cup as an example of how sports contribute to the national GDP.
“The 2010 World Cup in South Africa contributed over $5 million to the national GDP. The 2010 World Cup also generated direct impact on labour with over that with 1000s of jobs being created through infrastructure construction, hospitality, which showed the potential for the business of sports to significantly shape Africa’s economic future,” she stated.
Hlatshwayo noted the continent’s challenges, including a lack of financing and reliable data. “It’s imperative that we gather pertinent data to inform decision-makers and bridge the talent management gap. Investing in sports education and training in schools is vital to identifying and nurturing young talent,” she said.
Hlatshwayo concluded her speech by asserting that sports can foster hope, unity, and cohesion in Africa.