What is the state of the mining industry in sub-Saharan Africa, and what are the prospects for these countries? Metal Bulletin's Fast Facts Africa series will present overviews of West, Central, Eastern and Southern Africa over successive days.

The average growth rate for the African continent in 2013 was about 4%, which compares with a global growth rate of 3%. Growth in sub-Saharan Africa was 5% in 2013 and is projected to be 5.8% in 2014, going up to 6% and beyond in 2015.

East and West Africa were the fastest growing regions on the continent in 2013, recording growth of 6% and above.

The continent’s medium-term growth prospects look good too, according to the African Economic Outlook 2014 report, compiled by the African Development Bank, Organisation for Economic Co-operation and Development (OECD), and United Nations Development Programme (UNDP).

Mining plays an increasingly important role in the development of Africa’s economies. However, investment in African industries, such as mining, requires countries to provide reasonable certainty on the stability of political, legislative and regulatory environments.

African countries have major challenges to preserve political and social stability to incentivise investors to commit capital to projects on the continent.

Sustaining high growth, making the benefits of the growth inclusive, and reducing poverty in African countries will contribute to political and social stability.

Governments can speed progress through prudent macroeconomic policy, and increased access to key services, such as education, while also improving the regulatory environment for the private sector.

Metal Bulletin's quick-reference guide to Africa furnishes the background details for all the prominent mining countries.
Today: West Africa

Wednesday: Central Africa

Thursday: East and Horn of Africa

Friday: Southern Africa

To view all of Metal Bulletin's Fast Facts Africa briefings, click here

Bianca Markram