Although most economies re-opened in 2022 after the COVID-19 pandemic, Russia’s invasion of Ukraine shaped the investment environment and turned it upside down. In developed markets, sanctions and the European Union’s policy of reducing reliance on Russian gas exacerbated inflationary pressures that had built up during the pandemic. In emerging markets, food-price inflation, driven by the blockade of Ukrainian ports – which many developing countries relied on to supply grain and cooking oil – prompted concerns about food security. China’s ongoing zero-COVID policy, which the government did not start lifting until the beginning of December, also disrupted global supply chains and the health of other emerging economies closely tied to China. In short, the investment environment of 2022 was more uncertain than early 2020’s extreme volatility and the most turbulent since the global financial crisis of 2008.
In the face of such uncertainty, sovereign wealth funds found it more challenging to make direct investments and consequently, activity fell back from the record highs of 2021. While the total annual value of publicly disclosed direct investments declined by only 3.8% to $71.3 billion, the number of deals tumbled by more than a third to 306 from 468 in 2021.
The number of deals fell by more than a third to 306 from 468 in 2021.
José Luis Curbelo
Chairman & CEO, COFIDES