Africa's Pulse

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Africa’s Pulse is a biannual publication containing an analysis of the near-term macroeconomic outlook for the region. Each issue also includes a section focusing upon a topic that represents a particular development challenge for the continent. It is produced by the Office of the Chief Economist for the Africa Region of the World Bank.

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  • Publication
    Africa's Pulse, No. 16, October 2017
    (World Bank, Washington, DC, 2017-10) World Bank Group
    Following a sharp slowdown over the past two years, a recovery is underway in Sub-Saharan Africa. Gross domestic product (GDP) growth in the region is expected to strengthen to 2.4 percent in 2017 from 1.3 percent in 2016, slightly below the pace previously projected. The rebound is being led by the region's largest economies. In the second quarter of 2017, Nigeria exited a five-quarter recession and South Africa emerged from two successive quarters of negative growth. Economic activity has also picked up in Angola. Elsewhere, an increase in mining output along with a pickup in the agriculture sector is boosting economic activity in metals exporters. GDP growth is stable in non-resource intensive countries, supported by domestic demand. But the recovery is weak in several important dimensions. Regional per capita output growth is forecast to be negative for the second consecutive year, while investment growth remains low, and productivity growth is falling.
  • Publication
    Africa's Pulse, No. 15, April 2017
    (World Bank, Washington, DC, 2017-04) World Bank Group
    Economic growth in Sub-Saharan Africa is projected to recover to 2.6 percent in 2017, following a marked deceleration in 2016. The upturn in economic activity is expected to continue in 2018-19, reflecting improvements in commodity prices, a pickup in global growth, and more supportive domestic conditions. The pace of the recovery remains weak, however, as the region's three largest economies – Angola, Nigeria, and South Africa – are projected to post only a modest rebound in growth following a sharp slowdown in 2016. Investment growth will recover only gradually, amid tight foreign exchange liquidity conditions in major oil exporters and low investor confidence in South Africa. Growth will be limited in several metals exporters, as well as in oil exporters in the Central African Economic and Monetary Community, as these countries embark on fiscal adjustment to stabilize their economies. Among non-resource intensive countries, such as Ethiopia, Senegal, and Tanzania, growth is expected to remain generally solid, supported by domestic demand.