Covid-19 and climate change could lead to slower economic growth for Africa in 2022 - IMF
The International Monetary Fund (IMF) in its 2022 outlook says the biggest negative factors affecting African economies this year will be the Covid-19 pandemic and the accelerating pace of climate change, both of which underscore the need for increased global cooperation and dialogue.
With recurring Covid-19 waves, African countries continue to be on the back foot.
"For sub-Saharan African policymakers, the first priority is still to save lives. But the sheer speed of the most recent Covid-19 wave highlights the difficulty in heading off a crisis once it gets underway, leaving authorities with little option other than cost-containment measures and the need for continued emergency support and health spending," said the IMF.
It added that as long as the region's population remains vulnerable, policymakers will face the unenviable task of trying to boost their economies while simultaneously dealing with repeated Covid-19 outbreaks as they arise. To alleviate these problems, the IMF said Africa should play a bigger role in world affairs.
"Solutions to these global problems must involve all countries and all regions, especially sub-Saharan Africa, with the world's least vaccinated population, most promising renewable energy potential, and critical ecosystems," the IMF said in its report.
With the world grappling with the latest wave of the coronavirus which causes Covid-19, particularly the Omicron variant, economies are gradually opening up. However, Africa is lagging behind although signs of growth are optimistic.
The IMF said:
"Sub-Saharan Africa's economy is set to expand by 3.7% in 2021 and 3.8% in 2022. This follows the sharp contraction in 2020 and is much welcome, but still represents the slowest recovery relative to other regions".
The International Monetary Fund in its 2022 outlook says the biggest negative factors affecting African economies this year will be the Covid-19 pandemic and the accelerating pace of climate change, both of which underscore the need for increased global cooperation and dialogue.
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