COVID-19 will lead Africa into a recession in 2020 - World Bank [ARTICLE]

According to the World Bank, most African economies will contract and it will lead to its first recession in the last 25 years.

The bank’s Africa’s Pulse report said the region’s economy will contract 2.1% to 5.1% from growth of 2.4% last year, and that the coronavirus will cost sub-Saharan Africa $37 billion to $79 billion in output losses this year due to trade and value chain disruption, among other factors.

“The COVID-19 pandemic is testing the limits of societies and economies across the world, and African countries are likely to be hit particularly hard,” World Bank Vice President for Africa Hafez Ghanem said.

The coronavirus has led to suspension of international passenger travel in many countries on the continent, and hit sectors such as tourism.

President Nana Addo Dankwa Akufo-Addo

President Nana Addo Dankwa Akufo-Addo

Various African governments have announced lockdowns or curfews in response to the virus, which was slow to reach many African countries but is now growing exponentially, according to the World Health Organization.

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Real gross domestic product growth was projected to fall sharply particularly in the region’s three largest economies – Nigeria, Angola, and South Africa, the World Bank said.

Africa has over 11,000 confirmed cases of the novel coronavirus, more than 560 deaths and over 1,140 recoveries, according to a Reuters tally based on government statements and WHO data.

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