1min650

The 2018 Corruption Perception Index, published by Transparency International, measures the perceived levels of public sector corruption in 180 countries and territories. The index scores on a scale of zero (highly corrupt) to 100 (very clean). Accordingly, sub-Saharan Africa is the lowest scoring region on the index, and has failed to translate its anti-corruption commitments into any real progress. A region with stark political and socio-economic contrasts and longstanding challenges, many of its countries struggle with ineffective institutions and weak democratic values, which threaten anticorruption efforts.



1min17030

In Africa, the number of internet users grew by 116 times since 2000. Currently, more people in Africa use the internet than in Latin America, North America, or the Middle East. At this moment, there are 525 million internet users in Africa, while 447 million people use internet in Latin America and the Caribbean. On the other hand, there are 328 million and 174 million internet users in North America in the Middle East, respectively.



1min3250

Between 1997 and 2008, average non-tax revenue has been increasing in Africa largely driven by the global commodity price boom. Nevertheless, especially after 2012, non-tax revenue declined sharply due to dropping commodity prices. Despite this, the non-tax revenue collected by African countries reached a staggering USD133 billion in 2017, which is much higher than the USD100 billion the continent reportedly loses annually in the form of illicit financial flows.



1min4430

African countries exported USD476.6 billion dollars of goods in2018, 12.8Pct higher than the 2017 average. The figure is however 11.3Pct lower than the aggregate export earnings of 2014. In comparison, global exports from all countries worldwide equaled USD19.2 trillion in 2018, of which Africa’s export represent an estimated 2.5Pct.



1min33290

In the past, Africa’s cities have been growing, invisible from the global community. However, in recent years, some African cities have started becoming more noticeable on the world stage. This is partially due to the growth of private wealth, making Africa’s cities more vibrant and filled with diverse economic activities. Estimates suggest that more people are expected to migrate to Africa’s cities in order to access economic opportunities and better living standards in the future.



1min27650

Fuelled partly by exchange rate depreciations and widening fiscal deficits, average inflation across Africa stood at 7.2Pct in 2017, increasing from 5.6Pct in 2016, according to the African Trade Report published by the African Export-Import Bank in July 2018. However, there was wide variation across countries. For instance, inflation remained high in several economic giants such as Egypt, Nigeria and Angola. On the other hand, countries like Swaziland, Mali and Cameroon exhibited the lowest inflation rates in 2017.



1min33370

In 2017, the reserves of many African countries showed increases due to better commodity prices. In particular, increased oil and export earnings helped reverse the downward trend in Africa’s reserve position in 2016. Africa’s external reserves declined by 9.4Pct in 2016 to USD396.63 billion, while in 2017 it showed a 6.3Pct increase reaching USD421.53 billion.



1min39660

Finland has taken the top spot as the happiest country in the world, according to the World Happiness Report 2018, which ranked 156 countries by their happiness levels, and 117 countries by the happiness of their immigrants. Norway and Denmark came second and third, respectively, in the report published last month whereas the most powerful country in the world, the United States, ranked 18th, dropping down four spots from last year.



1min35150

Life expectancy, one of the methods used to measure health in various countries, has drastically risen in Africa from 50.9 years in 2012 to as high as 54 years last year, according to UNDP. The gain in longevity is observed despite the fact that large section of the African population still suffers from poverty, malnutrition, illiteracy, and low access to health facilities, communicable diseases, and a lack of access to clean water. Despite the improvement, the lowest life expectancy in the world is located in the continent. Africa’s Sierra Leone has a life expectancy of only 50.1 years, the lowest in the world.



1min70390

In Ethiopia, micro finance institutions (MFIs), which were mostly founded with the aim of fighting poverty, play a big role in addressing the needs of people who are considered ‘high-risk’ by commercial banks. In a country where over 77pct of the population is unbanked, MFIs provide loans to the large portion of the population with very few assets.



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