The slower-than-expected overall growth reflects ongoing global uncertainty but increasingly comes from poorly managed debt, inflation and deficits.
Tuesday 09, April 2019 BY KUDAKWASHE MUZORIWA
The World Bank has downgraded economic growth forecast for Sub-Saharan Africa this year to 2.8 per cent from an initial 3.3 per cent.
In a statement, the lender said that the economic growth remains below population growth for the fourth consecutive year and although regional growth is expected to rebound to 2.8 per cent in 2019, it will have remained below three per cent since 2015.
The slower overall growth has also been attributed to political and regulatory uncertainty as well as fragility that is having visible negative impacts on some African economies.
The World Bank said that Nigeria, South Africa and Angola, which make up around 60 per cent of sub-Saharan Africa’s annual economic output, were all facing various challenges, hence curbing their contribution to the growth momentum.
Last year, Nigeria recorded a 1.9 per cent economic growth, up from 0.8 per cent in 2017 which reflects a modest pick-up in the non-oil economy.
Additionally, South Africa came out of recession in the third quarter of 2018, but growth was subdued at 0.8 per cent over the year, as policy uncertainty held back investment, while Angola remained in recession, with growth falling sharply as the country oil production stayed weak.
Similarly, in economies such as Zambia and Liberia high inflation and heavy debt loads discouraged investors hitting these countries’ growth prospects.
However, non-resource-intensive economies such as Kenya, Rwanda as well as Uganda and several others in the West African Economic and Monetary Union, including Benin and Côte d’Ivoire recorded solid economic growth in 2018, added the World Bank report.