The high level of poverty and social inequality are the main problems in Sub-Saharan Africa

7 june 2018

The socio-economic development of Sub-Saharan Africa has been on the agenda of the international community and international organizations since the early 1960s when the decolonization of African countries began en masse, Analytical Center experts noted in their new bulletin on the current trends in the global economy titled Sub-Saharan Africa: Social Problems.

"Fifty years later we have to admit that despite the progress made in some of the countries in Sub-Saharan Africa, the region with a population of more than a billion people is still a long way from solving its main social problems. To this day, the key problems in the region are the high level of poverty and social inequality," the experts write in their bulletin.

According to the experts, another problem facing Sub-Saharan Africa is the low level of education and literacy of the population. In 2016 the literacy level across the region was under 60%. The analysts believe that the situation in higher education is even more complicated. In all the countries of the region, for which the World Bank publishes data, the share of the population with basic higher education degrees does not exceed 10%. This not only impedes upward mobility in society but is also a major obstacle to industrialization and, consequently, further economic growth, the experts note.

The Analysts believe that the main causes of the low levels of education and literacy in the region is low accessibility of education to the broad population, stemming from the high poverty level and the lack of an effective government system in primary education.

Over the next decade the countries in Sub-Saharan Africa will be facing such difficult challenges as industrialization, energy supply and the creation of favorable conditions for life, the experts note. The solution to the problems in the region depends to a large extend on the stability of the political institutions and the quality of the economic institutions in the region, external aid and strategic planning. Aid for Sub-Saharan Africa is also on the agenda of the UN Sustainable Development Goals and is a prerequisite condition for preventing the potential mass migration from Africa to Europe in the future.

For more information see the bulletin Sub-Saharan Africa: Social Problems.

The other bulletins on current global economic trends can be found in Publications.