The country won the award courtesy of the Swaziland Investment Promotion Authority (SIPA) which was established in 1998 to promote, facilitate and coordinate foreign direct investment (FDI) and local investment in Swaziland. SIPA provides various business function courses to the business community with a focus on procurement procedures, business linkage facilitation and business management. The agency also plays a role in surveillance of employment conditions. Since January 2010, SIPA's projects have contributed to generating over 10,000 jobs.
In being considered for the 2012 UNCTAD Investment Promotion Awards, SIPA's case study showed how it had been instrumental in attracting a FDI project creating 850 new jobs in a textile and apparels manufacturing company by facilitating the provision of factory space and the facilitation of necessary licenses, permits and tax concessions. This approach has informed the country’s FDI strategy, through ensuring that the time taken for investors to start up is greatly reduced by the provision of advance-built factory floor space to companies.
The winners and runners-up for the 2012 awards were announced at the third World Investment Forum (WIF) held in conjunction with the UNCTAD XIII ministerial conference in Doha, Qatar on 20 April 2012. The winners were the Malta Enterprise Corporation, the Beijing Haidian Investment Promotion Bureau, and ProMéxico. The other runner-up was Grenada Industrial Development Corporation.
At the handing-over ceremony on 11 May, Prime Minister Barnabas Sibusiso Dlamini also unveiled the country's new brand logo -- "Swaziland - Africa's New Promise". SIPA CEO Phiwayinkosi Ginindza said the national brand was one of the government's responses in addressing investor challenges in the country. It was noted that though Swaziland is a small and landlocked country, investors would have access to SACU (Southern African Customs Union), SADC (Southern African Development Community), COMESA (Common Market for Eastern and Southern Africa), and the African continent as a whole.