/ 13 May 2008

ADB: Africa’s economy to grow by 6% in 2008

Africa’s economy will grow by 6% this year and next, an acceleration from 2007, owing to high oil prices and demand for commodities, research from the African Development Bank (ADB) showed on Monday.

The joint research by the ADB, the Organisation for Economic Cooperation and Development and the United Nations Economic Commission for Africa was released ahead of the ADB’s annual meeting, which starts in Maputo, Mozambique, on Wednesday.

”Africa has continued to experience high economic growth. In 2007, real GDP [gross domestic product] growth of 5,7% was well above the long-term trend for the fifth consecutive year,” it said.

”The rate of GDP growth is expected to strengthen to about 6% in 2008 and be maintained at that level in 2009.

”Africa’s recent growth performance has been supported by strong external demand for oil and non-oil minerals, increased investment in these sectors and good weather conditions for agriculture,” the report said.

Despite the positive outlook for the economy, a separate report titled Africa Economic Outlook, released on Sunday by the ADB, warned that a near doubling of prices of some staple food crops in recent months had serious implications for Africa. — Sapa-AFP