According to a poll conducted by the London-based news agency, Reuters, Sub-Saharan economies will cope with tighter global liquidity this year and grow faster than in 2018, albeit at a lackluster rate compared to the commodity price boom heydays of a decade ago. As interest rates tighten in developed markets and trade tensions between two of the world’s largest economies simmer, the global economic wheels are expected to turn slower – but not enough to put the brakes on the region’s momentum.
The poll, taken in the past week, suggested Nigeria will grow 2.5 percent this year and Kenya 5.7 percent. Nigerian growth was expected to touch 2.7 percent this year in the last survey carried out three months ago while Kenya was pegged at 5.8 percent. The west African nation grew 1.81 percent in the third quarter and the latter 6 percent.
A poll just a week ago showed South Africa would eke out 1.5 percent growth this year, up from 1.3 percent in 2017 and the 0.7 percent estimate for 2018, but a far cry from the over 5 percent it was running at more than a decade ago.
“Despite a tighter global backdrop, we expect the growth recovery in Sub-Saharan Africa (SSA) to persist, led by improved prospects in Nigeria and South Africa, the region’s largest economies,” Razia Khan, Africa research head at Standard Chartered, wrote in a note.