Africa's Economy to Grow by 6% this Year

May 12, 2008
Demand for oil and commodities will push up growth rate

An acceleration from 2007, owing to high oil prices and demand for commodities, Africa's economy will grow by 6% this year and next, research from the African Development Bank (AfDB) showed May 12.

The joint research by the AfDB, the Organization for Economic Cooperation and Development and the UN Economic Commission for Africa was released ahead of the AfDB's annual meeting, which starts here on May 14.

"Africa has continued to experience high economic growth. In 2007, real GDP (gross domestic product) growth of 5.7% was well above 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 May 11 by the AfDB, warned that a near doubling of prices of some staple food crops in recent months had serious implications.

Copyright Agence France-Presse, 2008

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