GDP per capita: Africa’s one & important target

Some Africans in government of their nations attended the just concluded world economic forum in Davos, Switzerland; their message of Africa rising is strong and forms a major part of their campaign. Africa is tipped to be the next economic powerhouse after last decade surge of countries like China, Brazil and India.

This could be true seeing how the nominal GDP of some African countries are growing and how much of FDI –- Foreign Direct Investment –- have been attracted. Most African countries have also kept around their government experts in cabinet positions to engage the best of knowledge in decisions.

Africa rising is beneficial to itself and the world, bringing another choice of partnership to developed economies in decisions than observers or supporters. Africa, by country and collectively, has several issues that makes the total outlook grim, but leaves some hope to element of development in some sectors.

Some issues are peculiar to Africa from the way their leaders chose to govern in the post-colonial era, other issues are related to the late-start most countries have in thinking of anything like economic growth and development after their common independence era circa 1950 – 1970. African countries today have different issues and some of the issues are so big that it will not allow the government to focus on economic issues.

A priority that should guide leaders of African economies in decisions and policies is on how to boost Personal Income for the people. GDP per capita is so important if they have to leave the realm of poverty, dangerous levels of unemployment, and repeated conflicts for piffling matters.

The provisions of the government in bills and laws should favor the people and put more in their pockets to spend; helping microbusinesses and low income earners is important to help parents to children (or intergenerational) economic mobility.

Access to loans and ease with processes to help many stop struggles for basic things should come quick in some government’s near term provisions to the people. Respecting big businesses so much (for their tax and social giveaways) and wooing FDI’s anyhow will only lead to abuse of citizens out of line with labor laws, which in many ways contribute to poverty.

Governments for the benefit of their citizens should pursue favorable trade agreements (for Purchasing Power Parity) and monitor closely Retail Price Index (RPI) to check inflation. The benefits of good government policies will increase consumer spending not limiting purchase to needs, but to both needs and wants.

The importance of a focused Africa is primarily beneficial to the people, so that government’s hiding under the term ‘reforms that will benefit the future’ but may hinder some of today’s important foundations for per capita GDP, will quickly know that if the present is quavering, a good future may be unlikely.

The expertise is there, the resources in many ways are there, good plans and the power to cut losses in bad systems and processes are there; but it remains with governments whether to do or not. The noise of Africa rising everywhere may just be façade if per capita income growth stays same or keeps plunging.

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