A gradual recovery in some commodity prices and continued reform efforts are part of the new Africa narrative, but risks remain.
North Africa’s regional growth prospects have been revised sharply downwards for this year, as most countries continue to battle with domestic health emergencies brought on by the Covid-19 pandemic. Additionally, the oil price crash has left oil-producing countries Algeria and Libya in dire straits. For the rest of the continent, too, oil-dependent economies are expected to suffer more than diversified neighbours, but the entire picture looks bleak, with even the best-performing region of East Africa expected to endure an economic contraction of 1.8% in 2020. Our projections have changed dramatically over the past quarter as the overall impact of lockdowns, supply chain disruptions, a collapse in demand, and weak commodity prices, in addition to sharp declines in investment, tourism, and remittances, unfolds. (Source: Africa Quarterly Update, June 2020.)