Economic Report on Africa 2015

Industrializing Through Trade

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This report examines and provides analysis on the critical elements of effectively fostering industrialisation and hence structural transformation based on extensive review of experience with industrialised countries and Africa’s post-independence attempt at industrialisation. Ten country case studies were also conducted to shed light on industrialising through trade. The findings from this exercise inform the policy recommendations contained in this report.

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Recent economic and social developments in Africa and medium-term prospects

Global growth of gross domestic product (GDP) increased marginally from 2.4 per cent in 2013 to 2.6 per cent in 2014, thanks to the positive growth registered in most developed economies for the first time since 2011. Yet the worldwide expansion remains at risk, mainly owing to (a) virtual stagnation in the euro area, (b) slowing growth in the major emerging economies (notably China, Russia and the large emerging economies in Latin America) and (c) Japan’s stumble into recession in the second half of 2014. Growth in the United States (US) has continued to recover since 2012, reaching 5 per cent in the last quarter of 2014, although US economic growth is vulnerable to contagion from elsewhere (box 1.1).

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