Ongoing improvement in East Africa’s economic prospects is forecast by Ecobank’s research team in the newly published East Africa section of its flagship financial website, AfricaFICC.
Ethiopia, Kenya, Tanzania and Uganda are the regions economic powerhouses and are enjoying a period of significant economic growth, their Gross Domestic Products (GDP) are forecast to grow by between 5.2% and 8.5% this year, supported by ongoing reforms and the improvement in commodity prices which has driven up export revenues.
Much of the region is reliant on agricultural crops and commodities for export earnings, but continued economic optimism looks assured. The combined effects of further export diversification, improvements in infrastructure, industrialisation, major oil discoveries, and the potential for significant growth in commercial services, look set to turbocharge their economies.
East Africa is a well-integrated Anglophone trade hub, but the Africa Continental Free Trade Area (AfCFTA) could pave the way for the entire African continent to capitalise on its enormous growth potential. Ever-closer economic co-operation and integration will provide the bedrock for the continent’s increased competitiveness globally.
“The East African nations look set for continued and sustained economic growth, assisted by commodity prices and the prospect of significant oil production. The region is a world leader in disruptive Fintech, illustrated by the resounding success of mobile money and Kenya, together with Rwanda, Tanzania and Uganda, represent a regional powerhouse for global commercial services,” said Samuel Adjei, Ecobank Kenya Managing Director and Regional Executive for Central, Eastern and Southern African (CESA).
“The countries in East Africa, most of them members of the East African Community (EAC), make up one of the most dynamic commercial and economic regions in Africa. East Africa is a leading exporter of tea, coffee, cut flowers and minerals to world markets, is a financial, logistics and services hub, and has some of the most diverse intra-regional trade flows in Africa. Consumers in countries like Kenya have been transacting by mobile for more than a decade and we are now seeing East African tech hubs in Nairobi, Kigali and Kampala take a leadership role in developing innovations to address long-standing African challenges. It’s an exciting time for East Africa,” said Dr Edward George, Ecobank Head of Group Research.