Poverty in Africa

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Bryon Conner

Economics in Emerging Markets

Poverty in Africa: its effects on production and economic development

La Sierra University

June 14, 2012

Introduction

Poverty is a dangerous weapon that can hinder the growth and development of any society, where it is prevalent. Poverty in Africa has contributed to the spread of preventable diseases, the exploitation of woman and children, violent conflict over scarce resources and political instability. It is important that the world community not only acknowledges the reality of poverty in Africa, but nations and individuals should focus their energy and resources to do something about it. With poverty being so high in Africa it is hindering production and economic development.

Africa is the world’s second-largest and second most populous continent. As well as the world's poorest inhabited continent, as measured by GDP per capita It accounts for about 14.72% of the world’s human population. In 2006, 34 of the 50 nations on the United Nations list of least developed countries are in Africa. Many nations in Africa, GDP per capita is less than $200 per year, with a majority of the population living on much less. There is 64% population live in rural areas, and a 2.5% annual population growth. Because of the poverty in Africa it is causing a chain reaction, which is hindering Africa’s productivity and economic development. One of those chains being health, 90% of all malaria cases are in sub-Saharan Africa. 3,000 children under the age of five die each day from malaria in Africa. 1-5% of GDP in Africa covers costs of malaria control and lost labor days. 17 million people in Africa have died of aids. Incidents of malaria, cholera and even polio are on the rise in Africa, all undermining social and economic development on the globes most impoverished continent. Along with health being part of the chain comes education. 62% of children in Africa do not complete primary school. 19 nations in Africa are under 50% literacy rate. Illiteracy is said to be one of the many causes of poverty in Africa. -

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This graph shows the economic growth that africa has been having over the past couple decadeds. Africas economic growth has been low for many years and is show a little progress, but very little. Africa has stayed below $5,000, and continues to show little promise for economic growth if something doesn’t change.

Health
Poverty creates ill-health because it forces people to live in environments that make them sick, without decent shelter, clean water or adequate sanitation. Some illnesses which have been eradicated from the developed world and others parts of the globe keep recurring in this continent. Rates of HIV/AIDS, malaria, polio and various other diseases are highest in this region(Cooper, 2012). About 34% of the population in Africa suffer from malnutrition. 1 in every 6 children dies before turning 5 due to malnutrition and starvation. With those statistics Africa is going to continue to suffer in poverty. With people Africa dying it is causing productivity to slow down due to some many deaths. The people of Africa are not able to afford the proper healthcare needed to stay alive, which is hurting not only the economy, but the families that are continualy losing their loved ones to disease that can be preventable. The spread of diseases like HIV/AIDS, malaria, etc keep increasing in Africa as a result of poor health facilities that are put in place for the control of such diseases. Most families are poor, and cannot afford going to good hospitals where there are better drugs and equipment that will help to improve their health condition. Inability of getting proper healthcare lead to premature deaths in Africa on a daily basis. With health being so bad in Africa it is preventing the increase of production. With people out sick and/dying...
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