According to the African Development Bank, 18 countries have achieved “medium to high” levels of health, education and living standards.
For “health, education and standard of living”, a third of African countries have reached “medium or high” levels of development, according to a report on “Economic Outlook in Africa” released Monday, May 22 by the Bank Development Africa (AfDB), whose annual meetings are being held May 22-26 in Ahmedabad, India.
Even if “progress on the human development front remains slow and uneven”, “18 African countries” out of the 54 on the continent are now reaching a “medium or high level of development”, specifies this report produced jointly with the Organization. for Economic Co-operation and Development (OECD) and the United Nations Development Program (UNDP).
North Africa “has the highest levels, approaching the world average, but all sub-regions have registered steady improvements” since the start of the 21st century, according to the document. However, “despite the gains made over the past decade,” 544 million Africans (out of a total population of 1.2 billion) still live in poverty.
Half of young people are unemployed
Rwanda, followed by Ghana and Liberia, has recorded the most progress in the fight against poverty since 2005. Kigali has set up a community health insurance program that covers nearly nine out of ten inhabitants. In North Africa, Egypt and Tunisia have health insurance systems covering 78% and 100% of the population respectively.
“If they want to leverage more stable sources of growth to stimulate human development, countries will have to make more investments in human capital, health, education and skills,” said the President of the AfDB , Akinwumi Adesina, cited in report.
Second most dynamic region in the world
On the economic front, the continent’s average growth, after 2.2% in 2016, should rebound to 3.4% in 2017 and then accelerate to 4.3% in 2018, subject to “the continued recovery of prices. raw materials, strengthening the global economy and consolidating domestic macroeconomic reforms ”. Africa is still “the second most dynamic region in the world, behind the developing countries of Asia”. And within the continent, East Africa remains the most dynamic area, thanks in particular to the Ethiopian giant, ahead of North Africa.
Domestic demand, supported by Africa’s demographic vitality and the rise of the middle classes, is establishing itself as the main engine of growth, while the prices of natural resources are subject to the vagaries of world markets. The middle class, which the report estimates at 350 million people and whose “purchasing power is constantly improving, has immense potential for prosperity.”