With an expected growth rate of 8.5 per cent for 2016, Côte d’Ivoire will be the fastest growing economy in Africa, according to the International Monetary Fund’s latest World Economic Outlook. Côte d’Ivoire’s economy has benefited from government policies and structural reforms, which have resulted in strong, inclusive growth and has increased both private and public investments, according to the World Bank. Placed second is Tanzania with a projected growth rate of just under 7 per cent and Senegal completes the top three with 6.6 per cent. Tanzania is set to benefit from increased investment, especially in the oil and gas industry and from large ongoing infrastructural developments that are set to make it a regional transport hub.
The slowest is Chad, which is expected to record negative growth. Nigeria, Africa’s largest economy has moved from the first spot to the 15th in the continent within just two years.
Top 10 Fastest Growing Economies
|Number||Country||GDP Growth Rate|
|8||Central African Republic||5.7%|
DR Congo expects a GDP growth of 4.9 percent, Cameroon; 4.9 percent, Ethiopia; 4.5 percent, Ghana; 4.5 percent and Republic of Congo; 4.4 percent. Madagascar, Zambia and Chad are expected to see a growth of 4.1 percent, 3.4 percent, 3.2 percent respectively.
Major oil exporters, Angola and Nigeria, hard hit by the slump in crude oil prices, are projected to see a growth rate of 2.5 and 2.3 percent. At 2.3 percent, Nigeria is expected to see its poorest GDP growth since the return of Democracy in 1999. This development has become a point of concern for the IMF, and the World Economic Forum (WEF), which would be having its meeting on Africa later in May.
The challenge in Africa is that high economic growth has not been able to bring about poverty reduction as most of the growth has been happening in sectors that do not employ/affect the majority of the poor. For instance, in Tanzania, much of the growth has been happening in the communication and construction sectors which the majority of its people are employed in agriculture. For the rate of growth above to bring about poverty reduction, it is important that African countries prioritize agricultural transformation.
By Desmond Mushi