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Retail Sales of Licensed Merchandise, Middle East/Africa


The top economic trend in the Middle East was low consumer spending power, slow GDP growth, and (despite all that) a consumer reluctance to lower retail spending, especially on branded goods. Overall, growth for 2016 (3.0%) was slower than in 2015 (3.4%) and 2014 (4.4%).

South Africa, the region’s largest market for licensed goods, was up 3.2% despite a weakening economy (0.1% GDP growth). Compared to 2015 (3.4%), its growth was slightly slower, and while investors continue to remain optimistic about the country, there are no clear signs of significant rebounds in growth. The country’s growth is behind developing nations in the region, such as Nigeria, Kenya, and Ethiopia—whose consumption of licensed consumer goods is currently too low to make an impact on the world stage.

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