Economic growth in Nigeria, Rwanda and other Sub-Sahara African nations is likely to reach more than five per cent on average in 2013-2015 as a result of high commodity prices worldwide and strong consumer spending on the continent, ensuring that the region remains amongst the fastest growing in the world, the World Bank’s latest Africa’s Pulse, a twice-yearly analysis of the issues shaping Africa’s economic prospects said.
The report also indicates that in 2012, about a quarter of African countries grew at seven per cent or higher and a number of African countries, notably Sierra Leone, Niger, Cote d’Ivoire, Liberia, Ethiopia, Burkina Faso and Rwanda, were among the fastest growing in the world.
The new World Bank report which was released at the start of the 2013 IMF\World Bank Spring Summit forecasts that medium-term growth prospects remain strong and will be supported by a gradually improving world economy, consistently high commodity prices, and more investment in regional infrastructure, trade, and business growth.
Welcoming the new assessment that Nigeria and other African countries continue to grow faster than the global average, the World Bank’s Vice President stressed the need for faster progress in areas such as electricity and food in the vulnerable areas of the Sahel and the Horn of Africa, and that significantly more energy and agricultural productivity were needed to raise the quality of life for Africans throughout the continent and reduce poverty significantly.
“African countries will need to bring more electricity, nutritious food, jobs and opportunity to families and communities across the continent in order to better their lives, end extreme poverty, and promote shared prosperity,” said the World Bank’s Africa Vice President, Makhtar Diop. “Without more electricity and higher agricultural productivity, Africa’s future cannot prosper. The good news is that governments in Africa are intent on changing this.”
Diop also urged African governments and their development partners to upgrade the continent’s statistical capacity so that citizens could better measure and monitor their development progress and analyse the reasons for success and failure, especially in resource-rich countries and fragile states, where data gathering and analysis remained weak.