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Africa’s two largest economies are making a comeback


Africa’s two largest economies are making a comeback: Nigeria’s economy is finally lifting its head after five consecutive quarters of recession, while South Africa clawed back from a technical recession after months of barely-there growth.

Data published by Nigeria’s National Bureau of Statistics (NBS) shows that the economy grew 0.55% in the second quarter of 2017. The first hint of recovery came in the fourth quarter last year when, despite still in being in a recession, the economy showed an uptick. The economic growth is meagre but many Nigerians will hope that this signals the start of a permanent turnaround in the country’s economic fortunes after Nigeria slipped into recession for the first time in two decades.

The economic struggles has had significant ripple effects for both countries. The struggles of several companies meant Nigeria’s unemployment problem worsened to 14.2% in the last quarter of 2016. A foreign exchange shortage hobbled businesses reliant on imports and made it difficult for Nigerians to access US dollars to pay bills at foreign schools and hospitals and for holiday trips. Full Story

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