*Please Note: This article has been edited and was first published on April 12, 2016.
Africa rising! has always been the suitable phrase to describe the continent’s many recent advancements and brighter prospects. In fact, the March 2, 2013, issue of The Economist described Africa as “A Hopeful Continent,” taking into full consideration the economic boom which shows Africa to be one of the fastest growing continents the world should look out for!
It is a fact that Africa still has critical problems with regards to political violence, sickness and disease, not to talk about the seeming threats of terrorism, but with the expansion of access to secondary school education, decline of malaria-related deaths by up to 35%, reduction in HIV infections by a whopping 74%; increased life expectancy of an estimated 15%, Africa’s prospects remain bright.
Here are a few more reasons why!
In the next 20 years, Africa is more likely to become a hub of infrastructural growth, especially since several African economies are investing billions of dollars in infrastructure. Taking a tour through the towns and cities of Africa gets one amazed at the level of physical development the continent has been able to chalk up since the post-colonial era. If this pace of growth continues or even accelerates, Africa is headed for success in the next few years.
In the next 20 years, the world will learn from Africa on matters relating to healthy lifestyles. It is a known fact that most of the world’s oldest people are somewhere in the hinterlands of Africa – only the statisticians do not get to add them up! While problems with hunger and congested cities do exist in Africa, there are also many places that offer healthy diets and cleaner air to breathe, unlike other parts of the world battling with issues of pollution. Visit the villages, have a taste of the bitter leaves and herbs, and then you will understand the 2015 research published in the Lancet Global Health Journal which has revealed that African countries such as Chad and Mali have some of the healthiest diets in the world as compared to European countries who eat the worst.
In the next 20 years, Africa will remain the continent with the richest culture! Being the world’s second-largest continent with 54 individual countries, our variety of arts and crafts, folklore and religion, clothing, cuisine, music and languages are second to none. Tradition is and has always been deeply important to us. In their own way and form, African communities present the world with a different version of a fulfilled way of life. Blessed with some of the most iconic museums in the world and most ancient records of human civilization, Africa in the next few years will regain its position as the warehouse of historical knowledge!
In the next 20 years, Africa will prove its worth in Information Technology as several technology firms are currently trooping to the continent. This is especially true in Kenya, where 5-35% of the GDP is documented to come from telecommunications.
“African mobile telecoms have witnessed massive growth over the last decade…. This rapid uptake has been mainly driven by:
- mobile services being a core life enabler to all user segments;
- favorable macroeconomic factors flowing to higher consumption
- licensing opportunities and improved regulatory environment
Telecommunications growth [in] Africa has positively impacted incomes across the continent: in Sub-Saharan Africa, mobile revenues reached $35bn in 2011 representing GDP contribution of approximately 3%,” states a 2014 report by Deloitte.
In the next 20 years and beyond, several African nations could transmute to middle-income economies. In fact, fiscal projections by the African Development Bank show that both GDP and GDP per capita will increase steadily throughout Africa in the period 2010 to 2060 – a development which would see an end to extreme forms of poverty. The World Bank expects Africa’s economy to outpace the global average, while a statement by Standard Chartered Bank has predicted that Africa is most likely to become the next China by 2036.