Sunday, October 28, 2018

Is Africa Rising?

 Countries in Northern and Western Africa regions are more urbanized when compared to Eastern Africa. Population in urban areas are currently about 40 per cent and projected to increase, which will lead to an urban population larger than the rural population in about twenty years. African urban growth presents major challenges for sustainable development because migration to cities require access to land, infrastructure and basic services. This has also caused a strain on healthcare services. 

In sub-Saharan Africa, 41 per cent of the population lives in some form of extreme poverty and survive off just $1.90 or less per African per day.

 Half of all people living in extreme poverty worldwide can be found in Africa, which is one continent out of six others.

There are 145,000 millionaires living in Africa today and have a combined wealth of roughly $800 billion.

 Mauritius is the wealthiest country in Africa, standing ahead of South Africa, Namibia, Botswana, Egypt and Angola. Wealth per individual living in Mauritius increased to $4,000 in recent years. 

On the opposite end of spectrum, people living in Zimbabwe are the poorest, which is about $200 per person. Other African countries in deep poverty are Central African Republic, Democratic Republic of Congo, Burundi, Liberia, and Niger.

 African countries received about $162 billion in 2015 mainly in loans, personal remittances and grants. 

Specifically, African countries received about $19 billion in grants, $68 billion went out via capital flight, mainly by multinational companies.

 Although the continent received $31 billion in remittances, multinationals repatriated about $32 billion in profits back to their home countries. 

African governments received about $33 billion in loans and paid back about $18 billion in debt interest and principal payments. 

An estimated $29 billion is stolen each year in Africa through illegal activities.

Foreign direct investment (FDI) to Africa was $42 billion in 2017.  Venture capital funding in 2017 reached $560 million. As seen in previous years, South Africa (167.9 million), Kenya (147 million) and Nigeria (114.6 million) continue to dominate as investment destinations, which accounted for 76 per cent of total funding for 2017.  

Thus, there’s an imbalance between money coming in and money going out of Africa, which causes setbacks to this continent’s ability to move ahead and prosper.

The informal economy accounts for a high amount of employment and also contributes to poverty reduction. Income from informal sector is what keeps many individuals and families across Africa out of extreme poverty. Even in countries where informal work is a small percentage of its workforce, such as South Africa, it has a significant impact on reducing poverty. 

The continent’s population is estimated to increase from about 1.2 billion people to 2.2 billion people between 2015 and 2050. About 41% of the people in the continent are below 15 years old while another 19% are youth between 15 and 24 years old. As you can see, there will be a new generation of young Africans in need of a prosperous  Africa to live in,  a continent where food is healthy and nutritional for human consumption, where water is clean to cook and shower with, when housing has running water and electricity 24/7, and healthcare is easy to access and receive treatment right away, with education preparing youth for a world full of technology and automation, and the institutions are working for the people and not for an elite few, and infrastructure built  to last a long time, and so forth.

Is Africa Rising?

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