image from the publication cover

World Economic and Financial Surveys

Regional Economic Outlook:
Sub-Saharan Africa

April 2008

Ordering Information

The region's prospects continue to be promising, but global developments pose increased risks to the outlook. Growth in sub-Saharan Africa should again average about 6˝ percent in 2008 with oil exporters leading the way; meanwhile, growth in oil importers is expected to taper off, though only modestly. With food and energy prices still rising, inflation is projected to average about 8˝ percent this year for countries in the region, setting aside Zimbabwe. Risks in 2008 are tilted to the downside, but the region is better placed today to withstand a worsening of the global environment.

View the full text (use the free Adobe Acrobat Reader).


Executive Summary
I. Overview
  Main Developments in 2007
  Macroeconomic Policies
  Outlook for 2008 and Risks
  Medium-Term Challenges: Unleashing the Private Sector and Reducing the Cost of Doing Business
  Appendix 1.1
II. Monetary and Exchange Rate Policies in Sub-Saharan Africa
  The Monetary and Exchange Rate Landscape
  Policy Challenges of Implementing Monetary and Exchange Rate Regimes in Sub-Saharan Africa
III. Private Capital Flows to Sub-Saharan Africa: Financial Globalization's Final Frontier?
  Recent Trends in Capital Flows to Sub-Saharan African Countries
  Factors Influencing Capital Flows in Sub-Saharan Africa
  Evidence from Country Case Studies
  Lessons and Policy Agenda for Sub-Saharan Africa
  Appendix 3.1
IV. Africa's Power Supply Crisis: Unraveling the Paradoxes
  Africa's Power Sector in International Perspective
  Africa's Acute Power Problems
  The Way Forward
Statistical Appendix
  Sub-Saharan Africa: Country Groupings
  Data and Conventions
  List of Tables
Publications of the IMF African Department, 2004-08
1.1. Sub-Saharan Africa and the Global Slowdown
1.2. Economic Crisis in Zimbabwe
1.3. The Changing Nature of Public Debt in Sub-Saharan Africa
1.4. The Impact of High Oil Prices on Sub-Saharan Africa
1.5. Conflicts and Political Instability in Sub-Saharan Africa: Growth and Spillover Effects
1.6. Creditor Rights in Sub-Saharan Africa
2.1. Inflation Objectives for Sub-Saharan African Low-Income Countries
2.2. The Monetary Transmission Mechanism in Sub-Saharan Africa
2.3. Assessing Reserve Money Targeting in Sub-Saharan Africa
2.4. The Role of Money
2.5. Mozambique and Uganda: Adding Flexibility to Monetary Policy
2.6. Inflation Targeting in Ghana
2.7. Inflation Targeting: A Benchmark for Monetary Policy in Managed Floats
2.8. Analytic Frameworks for Monetary Policy in Low-Income Countries
3.1. Transition to Emerging Market Status: Where Does Africa Stand?
3.2. Domestic Determinants of Private Capital Inflows to Sub-Saharan African Countries
3.3. Are Capital Flows Good for Growth?
3.4. Recent Cross-Border Banking Investments
3.5. The Foreign Private Capital Capacity-Building Program
4.1. Introducing the Africa Infrastructure Country Diagnostic
4.2. Regional and Economic Effects of South Africa's Power Supply Crisis
1.1. Sub-Saharan Africa: Selected Indicators, 2003-08
A1.1. Categorization of Sub-Saharan African Countries
A1.2. Non-Oil Primary Fiscal Deficits, 2002-07
2.1. De Jure Monetary Policy Frameworks in Sub-Saharan Africa
3.1. Private Capital Flows' Volatility, 2000-07
3.2. Private FDI and Portfolio Inflows and Capital Market Development
A3.1. Controls on Portfolio Investments and FDI in Selected African Countries
A3.2. Capital Account Liberalization Process in Case-Study Countries
A3.3. Case Study Countries: Challenges and Policy Responses
4.1. Emergency Power Generation in Sub-Saharan Africa
4.2. Private Participation Power Sector Transactions in Sub-Saharan Africa
4.3. Power Sector Expenditure
4.4. Annualized Power Sector Expenditure Requirements to 2015
1.1. A Comparison of Growth
1.2. Growth in Sub-Saharan Africa
1.3. Regional Dynamics of Growth
1.4. Contribution to GDP Growth
1.5. Growth Volatility
1.6. Real Per Capita GDP Growth
1.7. Sub-Saharan Africa: Oil Exporters
1.8. Sub-Saharan Africa: Trading Gains (Losses)
1.9. Inflation in Sub-Saharan Africa
1.10. Sub-Saharan Africa: External Current Account Balance
1.11. Commodity Prices in Sub-Saharan Africa
1.12. Three-Month Interbank Risks in Selected Emerging Market
1.13. Monetary Developments
1.14. Real Effective Exchange Rates in Sub-Saharan Africa
1.15. Real Effective Exchange Rates in the CEMAC and the WAEMU
1.16. Sub-Saharan Africa: Reserve Coverage
1.17. Credit to the Private Sector in Sub-Saharan Africa
1.18. Real Effective Exchange Rates in Sub-Saharan African Countries with a Floating Regime
1.19. CSub-Saharan Africa: 2007 Exchange Rate Adjustments and Current Account Balances
1.20. Central Government Revenues in Sub-Saharan Africa
1.21. CCentral Government Primary Expenditures in Sub-Saharan Africa
1.22. Central Government Social Spending in Sub-Saharan Africa
1.23. Low-Income Sub-Saharan Africa: Government Financing of Fiscal Deficits
1.24. Total Government Debt in Sub-Saharan Africa
1.25. Oil Prices and GDP Growth in Sub-Saharan Africa
1.26. Exports and Growth in Sub-Saharan Africas
1.27. Sub-Saharan Africa: Growth and Commodity Prices
1.28. Growth Prospects in Sub-Saharan Africa
1.29. Sub-Saharan Africa: Reserve Coverage for Terms of Trade Shocks, 2007
1.30. Sub-Saharan Africa: Doing Business, 2007
1.31. Sub-Saharan Africa: Global Competitiveness Index, 2007
1.32. Sub-Saharan Africa: Governance Ranking, 2000-06
2.1. Sub-Saharan Africa: Exchange Rate Distribution, 2005-07
3.1. Sub-Saharan Africa: Capital Inflows, 2000-07
3.2. Sub-Saharan Africa: Capital Inflows, 2000-07 (Annual Averages)
3.3. Sub-Saharan Africa: Total Private Capital Inflows, 2000-07
3.4. Sub-Saharan Africa: Capital Inflows, Current Account, and Reserves, 2000-07
3.5. Sequencing of Capital Account Liberalization
3.6. Selected Sub-Saharan African Countries: Composition of Capital Flows
4.1. Evolution of Power Infrastructure in Sub-Saharan Africa Relative to Other Regions
4.2. Electricity Prices and Consumption in Sub-Saharan Africa Relative to Other Regions
4.3. Countries Affected by Acute Power Sector Crises in 2007
4.4. Drivers of Operating Costs for Sub-Saharan African Power Systems
4.5. Electricity Costs and Revenues by Type of Power System (US$/kwh)
4.6. Average Power Sector Revenue and Various Cost Benchmarks
4.7. Electricity Service Coverage in Sub-Saharan Africa
4.8. Electricity Service Expenditure in Sub-Saharan Africa
4.9. Evaluation of Power Sector Reform
4.10. State-Owned Enterprise Governance Characteristics
4.11. Frequency Distribution of Power Sector Efficiency Indicators
4.12. Hidden Costs of Power Sector Inefficiency
4.13. Long-Term Trends in External Finance for the Sub-Saharan African Power Secto