Africa’s economy is growing and its Gross Domestic Product (GDP) hit a seven-year high of 4%, which makes it the second fastest-growing region in the world behind Asia, says the African Development Bank (AfDB).
This growth is driven largely driven by East Africa, which will be the fastest-expanding region for the fifth straight year. Ethiopia, Kenya, Rwanda and Tanzania all feature on the AfDB’s list of 10 fastest-growing economies for 2019. Egypt, the biggest economy after Nigeria and South Africa, will also help drive growth. Output in the Arab world’s most-populous country will rise around 5.5% this year as the government’s structural reforms attract more investment.
“The state of the continent is good. Africa’s general economic performance continues to improve, but it remains insufficient to address the structural challenges,” Akinwumi Adesina.
A “borderless Africa” is one of the key foundations of a competitive continental market that will sustain this growth and help address various structural challenges, hence, the Africa Continental Free Trade Agreement (AfCFTA), offers substantial gains for all African countries.
The African Economic Outlook 2019 report also suggests five policy actions could raise Africa’s total gains to 4.5 percent of its GDP, or $134 billion a year:
- eliminating all applied bilateral tariffs in Africa;
- keeping rules of origin simple, ﬂexible, and transparent;
- removing all non-tariff barriers on goods and services;
- implementing the World Trade Organization’s Trade Facilitation Agreement to reduce cross border time and transaction costs tied to non-tariff measures and;
- negotiating with other developing countries to reduce their tariffs and non-tariff barriers, by 50%.