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Africa Economic Landscape In 2021

         Date: 2012-07-03

           Tag: Africa Economic, Africa Economic Landscape

Summary: Using our long-term economic and demographic projections, BMI has sketched out how Sub-Saharan Africa (SSA)’s economic landscape is likely to change over the next 10 years.

Using our long-term economic and demographic projections, BMI has sketched out how Sub-Saharan Africa (SSA)’s economic landscape is likely to change over the next 10 years.

While a long-term forecast is fraught with difficulty, we highlight the markets which have the potential to outperform over the long run. Based on our current models, we forecast SSA’s economy to be almost three times as large in US dollar terms in 2021, and that South Africa’s time as the region’s largest economy will be long gone.

Largest Economies In SSA (Nominal GDP, US$bn). f=BMI forecasts

Largest Economies In SSA (Nominal GDP, US$bn). f=BMI forecasts

After decades of economic underperformance, we believe that by 2021 SSA will be recognised as one of the emerging markets that will drive global growth.

With a nominal gross domestic product (GDP) of US$3.84trn, the region will have a larger GDP than France, and will be closing the gap with Brazil. SSA as a whole will, according to BMI’s projections, rank among the top 10 largest economies in the world. By using our economic and demographic forecasts, we have identified the individual economies which we predict will be the best performing over the next decade, highlighting how the continent’s economic centre will move north and east.

The biggest change in Africa’s economic landscape over the next decade is likely to be the relative decline of South Africa.

While BMI predicts that South African economic growth will average 3.4% over the next 10 years (slightly slower than the 3.6% it posted from 2002-2011), we expect the country to be overtaken by Nigeria as the region’s largest economy in 2016.

This will be powered by booming oil wealth and a rapidly expanding population (BMI forecasts 208mn people by 2021). Ghana, jumping from 6th to 4th place, will be the only other West African economy among SSA’s largest economies in 2021.

Furthermore, for the first time in 30 years, no Francophone nations will place among the region’s largest economies.


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