Fastest growing economies in Africa

Fastest Growing African Economies

Country Est. Growth rate
Ethiopia +8.1%
Mozambique +7.8%
Tanzania +7.2%
Congo +7.0%
Ghana +7.0%
Zambia +6.9%
Nigeria +6.8%

World Economic Outlook report 2014

According to the world economic Outlook Report, these afore mentioned countries are the fastest growing economies in Africa. This is based on the increase of the GDP (PPP) and GDP per capita income. These African countries have shown considerable growth in the last decade and show no signs of slowing down in the near future.

Though there is still a lot of infrastructural challenges in the aforementioned countries they have experience a steady growth rate over the last decade.


The country’s economic growth is principally attributed to intense government projects aimed at achieving its Millennium Development Goals (MDGs) as the country aims at becoming a middle income status by 2025. Ethiopia’s grand transformational plan is to really strengthen the manufacturing sector of the country because Ethiopia is quickly emerging as a manufacturing hub in the region especially in regards to agro processing and textiles and therefore the focus on industrial parts is driven mainly by the governments focus on manufacturing as an engine for growth going forward.

In an effort to combat inflation, the government pursued a tight monetary policy stance using base money as the nominal anchor to control monetary expansion. This measure, in the context of a slowdown in global commodity prices, resulted in annual consumer price inflation of 7.9% in November 2013, compared to 39.2% and 15.6% in November 2011 and 2012, respectively. The government’s determination to reduce inflation was further reflected in the pursuance of prudent fiscal policy focused on strengthening domestic resource mobilisation and reducing domestic borrowing. The strong fiscal stance, particularly measures to improve tax administration and enforcement, contained the fiscal deficit at 2.0% of GDP in 2012/13 compared to 1.2% of GDP in 2011/12.



The economy of Mozambique is one of the most dynamic on the continent and continues to enjoy strong growth. With an 8% growth in GDP it is one of the fastest growing economies in the world and Africa. The main boosters of growth are Foreign Direct Investments (FDI) in the extractive sector. Inflation has remained low and stable over the years at a 4% rate which had encouraged the central bank to ease monetary policy. This has bolstered strong credit growth. Mozambique has invested largely in an infrastructural development programme to close the infrastructure gap.


The economy has continued to perform strongly, with current growth at around 7%. This is driven largely by communications, transport, financial intermediation, construction, agriculture and manufacturing. In the medium term, growth will be supported by the ongoing investments in infrastructure and the projected good weather conditions. Also, these medium-term growth projections are backed by continued investments in the recently discovered natural gas reserves in Tanzania and the expansion in public investments (including the ongoing construction of USD 1.2 billion gas pipeline from Mtwara to Dar es Salaam), as well as the related investments aimed at stabilising power generation in the country.


Congo has benefited from the improvement in some aspects of the business environment, the reconstruction of infrastructure and strong demand. Mining has been the main driver of growth, and several mining companies have passed from exploration to production since 2013.

Rationalisation of macroeconomic policy and stable commodity prices helped to contain inflation, which stood at 1.1%, against 2.7% in 2012 and a target of 4.0% in 2013. The exchange rate has depreciated slightly (0.3%). Proper co-ordination of fiscal and monetary policies and the rally in export earnings have also increased foreign exchange reserves at the central bank (BCC). These rose from 2012 to 2013, from CDF 1 213.70 million to CDF 1 766.45 million (Congolese francs), covering 9.4 weeks of imports.


Growth has, however, been broad-based, driven largely by service-oriented sectors and industry, which on average have been growing at a rate of 7.0% over the five years up to 2013. Over the medium term to 2015, the economy is expected to register robust growth of around 8%, bolstered by improved oil and gas production, increased private-sector investment, improved public infrastructure development and sustained political stability.


The growth in real GDP was largely driven by manufacturing, mining, construction, transport, communications and the public sector. Copper remains the country’s mainstay, contributing about 70.0% to export earnings. However, over the last few years non-traditional exports have grown substantially. Economic performance in the medium term is expected to remain strong. Real GDP growth is projected to increase to 7.1% and 7.4% in 2014 and 2015, respectively. Infrastructure investment, especially in mining, power generation and roads, with the Link 8000 project, will ensure


Nigeria rebased its GDP from 1990 to 2010, resulting in an 89% increase in the estimated size of the economy. As a result, the country now boasts of having the largest economy in Africa with an estimated nominal GDP of USD 510 billion, surpassing South Africa’s USD 352 billion. The exercise also reveals a more diversified economy than previously thought. Nigeria has maintained its impressive growth over the past decade with a record estimated 7.4% growth of real gross domestic product (GDP) in 2013, up from 6.7% in 2012. This growth rate is higher than the West African sub regional level and far higher than the sub-Saharan Africa level.

The performance of the economy continues to be underpinned by favourable improvements in the non-oil sector, with real GDP growth of 5.4%, 8.3% and 7.8% in 2011, 2012 and 2013, respectively. Agriculture – particularly crop production – trade and services continue to be the main drivers of non-oil sector growth.


Data sources

  • African Development Bank
  • World Economic Outlook
  • International Monetary Fund
  • African Economic Outlook
  • World Bank
  • CIA Fact book

Denis C.W

A54 Marketing Group

Marketing and business promotion in Africa.