In Sub-Saharan Africa, like many other third world and former Soviet bloc countries, economic development policies revolve around raising the standard of living for their people. Therefore, they are seeking different ways to attract investment, trade, technology, and jobs. The movement towards attracting foreign investment has been paralleled by democratic political reforms and economic liberalization of previously autocratic and restrictive systems. These reforms have been enacted, mostly at the insistence of the World Bank and the International Monetary Fund, in order to deal with the severe foreign debt situation and improve Sub-Saharan Africa’s opportunities for attracting foreign investment. This paper seeks to show whether or not there is a historical explanation for economic problems many African countries are currently facing. There will be a discussion of current investment laws in several Sub-Saharan countries, and a critical examination of the relationship between the issues of control and protection from the perspective of both the foreign investor and the host nation. This paper will discuss the impact of events like the debt crisis, the establishment of a Single European Market, the ending of the Cold War, and the ending of apartheid in South Africa on the attitude towards and the patterns of foreign investment.