Economic insights - Africa, Q4 2016

Economic risks for the year ahead Welcome to the latest edition of ICAEW’s Economic Insight: Africa , the quarterly economic forecast for the economies of the sub-Saharan Africa (SSA) region prepared for finance professionals whose work focuses on Africa. This edition was produced by Oxford Economics, ICAEW’s partner and acknowledged expert in global economic forecasting. This edition of Economic Insight: Africa provides insight into the main risks, and differences in opportunity between countries, that businesses need to consider when planning for 2017.

Key findings

• Firstly, there are important risks to domestic economic stability in the region. We are particularly focussed on the threat of a food price-exchange rate-inflation cycle (particularly in Nigeria and Angola), as well as the impact of credit downgrade in South Africa on the continent’s banks. • Furthermore, the continent’s ongoing success in global trade and investment could be at risk as we move into 2017, with recent developments in China’s economy and the recent US Presidential election particularly important in this respect. • We also consider which economies remain most impaired by a poor policy environment towards business growth. Nigeria and Angola in particular are a concern, while more progress has been made in Mauritius, Rwanda and Botswana. We also examine economic prospects for the continent in the years ahead. Overall, growth prospects for West Africa and Southern Africa remain subdued, with GDP growth of 2% or less in 2017. But the outlook in East African economies is substantially more positive – we forecast another year of growth above 6% for the region.

Economic Insight: Africa Quarterly briefing Q4 2016

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