espite a slowdown in the global economic recovery and an increasingly difficult global environment, Sub-Saharan African countries are continuing to post solid growth.
Following a 4.6 percent expansion in 2010, the region’s output is expected to grow by 4.8 percent this year (5.8 percent excluding South Africa) and by more than 5 percent in 2012 and 2013.
Indeed, African countries are amongst the fastest growing countries in the world: Ghana is projected to grow by well over 10 percent this year; and nearly 40 percent of the countries in the region are likely to see 6 percent or higher growth rates. Growth in Africa remains closely linked to the evolution of international commodity prices—oil, metals, and non-food agricultural commodities—which have remained generally buoyant.
Not surprisingly, a sharp deterioration in global conditions would weigh down on the region’s prospects. Moreover, this time around African countries will be more constrained in their policy options: because they have less fiscal space than they had in the wake of the 2008 global financial and economic crisis. Read the full analysis on Africa’s Pulse.
Economic growth is contributed largely by enterprises with the capital form dominantly by foreign groups of private and public entrepreneurs and investors. Under such business arrangement, the Wealth of the Nation generated is largely retained by foreign nationals. This justifies the existence of 2Africas: One Africa with a solid growth rate and One Africa with over 30 States at the bottom of the Human Development Index.
The Centre for Globalization Leadership is for the restructuring of the capital of joint-ventures to make it inclusive of the participation of groups of public and private investors to be at least 40 percent of extractive and agriculture industries but ideally to be 60 percent. The Africa Spring in Tunisia and Egypt and the Wealth War between NATO and China without the army of China in libya should help harness the will of the political leadership to launch a vast program of restructuring the capital of the existing joint-ventures.
Thanks for the post. Africa’s growth has been broad-based, both in the decade prior to the 2008 global financial crisis and in 2010-11. It is very relevant to know how Africans are benefiting from this growth. One thing that we do see is that a decade of steady growth in the region has been accompanied by an improvement on many of the Millennium Development Goals. For example, the region’s poverty rate — proportion of people with a daily consumption of $1.25 or less — has fallen from 59 percent in 1995 to 51 percent in 2005, with poverty reduction greater in urban areas than rural areas. Of course, the extent to which poverty declined has varied across countries. Tangible progress has also been achieved on human development indicators: child mortality rates have fallen 18 percent between 2000 and 2009; primary school enrollments have risen from 59 percent to 76 percent between 2000-08; and 27 countries in the region have either achieved or are likely to achieve gender parity in education. These positive trends are broad-based with the largest improvement in low-income countries.
Is this progress enough? Clearly, not. More and more inclusive growth is needed. But at the same time it is progress that cannot be denied
I wonder how growth indicators are a measure of welfare in Africa. Like someone said, of what importance is growth, when many more people are falling into poverty?
Our economies have reported growth over the past three decades, but indicators such as poverty, unemployment, hunger continue to increase in many parts of Africa.
Is the measure of GDP a good measure for growth?
How robust are the tools we use in measuring GDP growth?
Is the growth being enjoyed by a few whilst many are denied?
Of course, growth affects poverty in different ways depending on the source of such growth and those that enjoy the benefits of such growth.
“African countries are amongst the fastest growing countries in the world…, growth in Africa remains closely linked to the evolution of international commodity prices—oil, metals, and non-food agricultural commodities—which have remained generally buoyant”.
What will this growth look like in 2, 3 or 4 years, when these prices will fall? Please stop telling that african economies are in good shape just because the growth rates are at a substantial level. First ask the question who benefit from these prices going up? The US, or the French, or the English firms extraxting oil, metals and non-food agricultural commodities. I used to say “Africa doesn’t produce oil, they (put for US, English, French firms) produce oil in Africa”. Second, as long as we’ll not produce enough food commodities or have an industrial basis, all these growth rates will be fake. Please read this http://www.economist.com/debate/debates/archive/page:2. It’s clear that an economy cannot succeed without a big manufacturing base. Full stop.
good Growth Numbers are a great thing, especially on the impact it has on Western perception of the African Continent.
When the “bottom billion” is among the ‘fastest growing economies, one will pause and take note.
But I also believe that the very growth creates space for latency and cosmetic strategies that do not necesarily trickle down to the very people who need to feel that growth.
The number of poor people in Sub saharan Africa has almost doubled (between 1981 and 2005) and Africa’s share of the world poor has increased from 11% to 27%. This has been attributed to population growth, so clearly, either resources are not sufficient for the population growth or no one’s interested in creating policies that 1.- addresses the massive population growth or 2, spurs the economy enough to support that population increase and consequent local demand.
So where is this growth being felt? I think the celebration should be halted, another crisis on the way, and several African countries may this time not survive it as we did in 2008.
You make some good observations Terryanne. There is certainly no place for complacency. Even as the incidence of poverty in Sub-Saharan Africa has trended down beginning in the mid-1990s, the actual number of poor people has risen. The region has the highest average total fertility rate — 5.1 births per woman — in the world [Family Planning Trends in Sub-Saharan Africa in Yes Africa Can.See it here:http://web.worldbank.org/WBSITE/EXTERNAL/COUNTRIES/AFRICAEXT/0,,contentMDK:22549653~pagePK:146736~piPK:146830~theSitePK:258644,00.html
However, note that India, which has reduced the incidence of poverty by 10 percentage points between 1990 and 2005, has also seen an increase in the number of people who are poor.
I would argue that this is a disingenuous presentation of what is happening in Africa. Not totally inaccurate, but a presentation with some massive holes. Is Ghana really a good representation of SSA? Plus, let’s talk about the use of GDP as an indicator of growth — come on! OK, GDP (with GNP) can be a good gauge to a country’s economy but what about the factors on the Human Development Index? Is a country really any better off with a higher GDP if the people are still improvised? And their natural resources plundered? Are these poor countries saving enough from the revenues of the natural resources? Even with high oil prices Nigeria is only meeting expenditures — there is no savings! If you want to convince me that Africa is progressing lets talk about the countries left behind, or those who got over the hump of absolute poverty too late… let’s talk about Center Africa Republic, Chad, Somalia, Sudan, Mali. Not Ghana like you use. Let’s talk about countries where almost everything has failed. Aid. Governance projects.
I agree with some of the comments expressing doubts about the accuracy of the indexes used to measure growth.
The questions it seems to invoke is whether or not this growth is lifting Africa out of poverty or is this just a mirage which is masking more of the same.
From my non-expert assessment, I believe – especially after the 2010 Word Cup – the world is looking at Africa with new eyes. Additionally, many African expatriates, with education, are returning to take advantage of new opportunities in Africa.
It is interesting to see that the skeptics voice predominate in this debate. There is of course serious questioning about “growth” itself as a useful yardstick for assessing meaningful development (that is change that matters for the majority). In addition to this general skepticism, there seem to be something particularly wrong with African growth! That wrong thing seems to resolve around the fact it is difficult to find that growth on the ground. Is this due to the phenomenon which Abdoulaye Niang raised in the first comment? Yes that does carry a part of the answer! UNECA over at least the past two years has been decry the disturbing trend of jobless growth. We urgently need to find a way of re-positioning local SMEs as the heart of the African economies. Growth must be located at that level. Can less centralized economic development interventions produce that outcome? That is what initiatives such as LEDNA (http://www.ledna.org) seek to promote. Whatever the means, it is today key that that dynamic local productive base be developed. It does not exist now and is not seen to be emerging.