These interesting facts are from the World Bank. A lot of them are, as you would expect from that source, economic, but there is a fair sprinkling of social issues. (NB SSA = sub-Saharan Africa)

Africa globe

[Photo credit: duncan]

  1. The largest population in SSA is 151.3 million in Nigeria; the smallest is 0.1 million in Seychelles.
  2. South Africa’s and Nigeria’s GDP in nominal prices comprised over fifty percent (51.4 percent) of total SSA’s GDP.
  3. SSA GDP growth was 5.1 percent. Angola had the largest growth at 14.8 percent while the lowest was Botswana with a negative growth (-1.0 percent).
  4. South Africa has SSA’s largest real GDP ($183 billion); the smallest is Guinea Bissau ($202 million).
  5. Equatorial Guinea has SSA’s highest GNI per capita ($14,980); Burundi has the lowest ($140).
  6. The total GDP per capita of the richest 10 African countries was 25.2 times of the poorest 10.
  7. Between 1990 and 1999 PPP GDP per capita growth was 15 percent ($1,158.9 to $1,327.8) for Sub-Saharan Africa; in between 2000 and 2008 it was 54 percent ($1,372.9 to $2,113.9).
  8. Exports rose from $319.0 billion in 2007 to $413.7 billion in 2008, a 29.7 percent rise; conversely, imports rose less than exports, from $305.3 billion in 2007 to $372.1 billion in 2008, a 21.8 percent rise.
  9. Total trade as percentage of GDP is the highest in Seychelles, 283.4 percent and lowest in Central Africa Republic, 37.5 percent.
  10. In two thirds of SSA countries, one or two products are responsible for at least 75 percent of the country’s total exports.
  11. On average, the merchandise export within trade blocs is 8.4 percent of total bloc exports.
  12. Cape Verde receives the highest net ODA per capita ($438.2); Nigeria receives the lowest ($9.5).
  13. The highest private sector fixed capital formation as share of GDP is Cape Verde at 33.7 percent; the lowest is Angola at 1.8 percent.
  14. In Guinea-Bissau, the agriculture value-added as percentage of GDP is 51.5 percent; in Botswana it is 1.6 percent.
  15. South Africa uses the most electric power per person (4,809.0kW/h); Ethiopia uses the least (38.4 kW/h).
  16. In 2007, Burundi has the highest proportion of women in its labor force (90.2 percent); Sudan has the lowest (32.8 percent).
  17. Equatorial Guinea has the highest proportion of men in its labor force (93.8 percent); Namibia has the lowest (60.3 percent).
  18. In 2007, almost one in every three 15-49 year olds in Swaziland has contracted HIV (26.1 percent); the rate is one in every thousand in Mauritania.
  19. For the period 2007-08, Seychelles has the highest life expectancy (73 years); Mozambique has the lowest (42 years).
  20. In the decade (1997-2007) Rwanda and Sierra Leone have made the greatest gains in life expectancy: 11 and 8 years respectively. Conversely, life expectancy has decreased 13 years in Lesotho, and 10 years in South Africa and Swaziland.
  21. For the period 2007, Zimbabwe has the highest adult literacy rate (91.2 percent); Mali and Burkina Faso have the lowest (28.7 percent).
  22. In Seychelles, 92 percent of women are literate; the figure is 13 percent for Chad and 15 percent for Niger.
  23. Cape Verde has the highest gross enrolment rate in secondary education (90 percent); Niger has the lowest (11 percent).
  24. In Mauritius there are 22 children per primary school teacher; there are 91 in Central African Republic.
  25. In Burundi, 63.1 percent of children under the age of 5 are short for their age; in Senegal it is 20.1 percent. Same fact than below – to be removed
  26. The highest connection charge for a business phone is $366.6 in Benin; the lowest is in Ghana at $0.7.
  27. South Africa has 924 mobile phones per 1000 people; Eritrea has 22 per 1000 people.
  28. South Africa has the longest rail lines of 24,487 km and Uganda has the shortest of 259 km.
  29. In 2010, starting a business in Guinea requires 213 days for each procedure; it takes 3 days in Rwanda.
  30. In 2010, Sudan has the highest number of procedures to enforce contracts of 53; Rwanda has the lowest of 24.
  31. It takes 16.6 days average time to clear customs on direct exports in Cote d’Ivoire and 3.8 days in Gabon; conversely for imports it takes 31.4 days in the Republic of Congo and 4.4 days in Lesotho.
  32. Firms indentifying corruption as a major constraint was highest in Côte d’Ivoire at 75.0 percent, whilst the lowest is Ghana 9.9 percent
  33. The percentage of firms expected to give gifts to secure a government contract is highest in Congo Republic are 75.2 percent and lowest for Mauricia at 8.8 percent.
  34. Djibouti has the most urbanized population (84.6 percent); Burundi the least (10.4 percent).
  35. For the period 2000-07, the share of poorest 20 percent in national consumption or income was lowest in Angola at 2 percent; in Ethiopia it was 9.3 percent. (MDG 1)
  36. In Burundi, 38.9 percent of children under the age of five are underweight. In Gabon they are 8.8 percent. (MDG 1)
  37. On average, between 2004 and 2006, South Africa and Gabon had less than 5 percent of population below the minimum dietary energy consumption; conversely Democratic Republic of Congo had the highest at 75 percent. (MDG1)
  38. Thirty seven percent of children who start first grade reach grade five in Chad, while in Mauritius 99 percent reach fifth grade. (MDG 2).
  39. The lowest net primary enrolment ratio is found in Liberia (30.9 percent); the highest is in Sao Tome and Principe (97.1 per cent). (MDG 2).
  40. Youth literacy (ages 15-24) is highest in Gabon at 97 percent and lowest Burkina Faso at 39.3 percent. (MDG 2)
  41. Women in national parliament total seats are the highest with 56.3 percent in Rwanda and the lowest with 1.8 percent in Sao Tome and Principe. (MDG 3)
  42. In Sierra Leone 155 out of 1,000 children die before the age of one; in Seychelles the rate is 12 per 1,000. (MDG 4)
  43. In Sierra Leone 272 children per 1,000 die before the age of five; in Seychelles, the rate is 13 per 1,000. (MDG 4, IDA 2)
  44. Skilled personnel attend 5.7 percent of births in Ethiopia; they attend 98.4 percent of births in Mauritius. (MDG 5, IDA 4)
  45. Contraceptive use (any method) is highest in Mauritius at 75.8 percent; lowest is Chad at 2.8 per cent. (MDG 6)
  46. In Chad, 9 percent of the population has access to improved sanitation facilities; in Mauritius 94 percent have such access. (MDG 7)
  47. In Somalia, 29 percent of the population has access to a safe source of water. In Mauritius, it is 100 percent. (MDG 7)
  48. Gabon has the highest forest area as a percentage of total land area at 84.4 percent, whilst Djibouti has the lowest at 0.2 percent. (MDG7)
  49. South Africa has the highest carbon dioxide emissions of 414,649 metric tons, whilst Comoros has the lowest of 88 metric tons. (MDG 7)
  50. In Sierra Leone 3 persons per 1,000 are Internet users; there are 371 in every 1,000 people in Seychelles, which also had 212 computers per 1,000 people for the period 2005-07. (MDG 8).

(Reference: 50 things you didn’t know about Africa – World Bank)

Africa IMF Reports : Burundi 2010 Africa IMF Reports : Seychelles 2010 Africa IMF Reports : Liberia 2010 Africa IMF Reports : Togo 2010 Africa IMF Reports : Democratic Republic of the Congo 2010

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