History had shackled Africa for a long time. However, poverty, hunger, and war are still evergreen in this harsh piece of land. The continent is struggling to improve itself. Yet, it still lags in the economy and commonwealth. This continent has very mediocre health conditions too. Individuals experience the ill effects of numerous tropical ailments. A large number of people in Africa are living with contagious diseases like Ebola, HIV, and Zika. Africa faces a very harsh climate making it very difficult to grow food and agriculture-related products. Other issues also cause damage to the economy. Some of them are civil unrest, population density, war, poor modernization, international interference, and illiteracy. All these issues have driven African countries to engage in acts of smuggling and terrorism, which only makes the situation worse. Here are the top poorest countries in Africa which are struggling more than any other country on this continent.
Poorest Countries In Africa
The poorest country in Africa is Malawi, which has very low GPD per capita at just 226$. This country is dependent on agriculture. Almost 80% of the population is linked to agriculture. That’s why the harsh weather and climate strokes affect the whole population. Even though Malawi is getting better economically, but some people are earning less than a dollar a day. Malawi has no maritime borders, and this makes it very difficult for international trade. Malawi is a very small country with a population of more than 18 million. The inhabitable land gets even more thinner as one-third of the country’s area is occupied by Lake Malawi. Due to poor conditions, life expectancy is not very good either. Although the government is trying to improve, still it is not good enough for common people.
Burundi is an East African country without a coast and is a country of almost 11 million people. 75% of the population is living below the poverty line. This country had spent a lot of time under British, German and Belgium colonialism. In short, history hasn’t been kind. After getting independence in 1962, this country is still struggling. Burundi is one of the poorest countries in Africa with GDP per capita at 267 USD.
3. Central Africa Republic
The Central Africa Republic is also landlocked country giving a hard time in import and export matters. It is very hard for a country to survive without a maritime border. This country is blessed with many natural resources like gold, diamond, hydropower and crude oil. But, the problem is the government doesn’t have sufficient technology for the extraction of minerals, making Central Africa Republic one of the poorest in Africa. One of the most terrible moments in the history of this country was the Central African Bush War which left a lot of people homeless. Though population density is not so high the GDP per capita of the country is of very thin figures of just 333$.
4. The Gambia
It is known as the Islamic Republic of Gambia. This country has a very small area as well as a very small population. Locals depend on agriculture, tourism, and fishing. They are hard workers but they use post-modern techniques that don’t bear enough fruit. The Gambia is living below the international line of poverty with a very slim GDP per capita of 371$.
This country is named due to the Niger River. It has a very large area but almost 80% of it is covered by the Sahara desert. This country is landlocked, having no direct contact with the sea and international waters. It has a large population of 21 million and a majority of them are Muslims, but it has a very small GDP Per Capita of 415$. The major causes of poverty in Niger are poor health conditions, terror, illiteracy and disease. This poor country in Africa was struck by the notorious Hunger Plague, crippling their economy even more.
Liberia is situated on the west coast of Africa. Long ago, it was an American colony. However, even after getting independence in 1847, it is still not standing firmly on its feet. The country is below the internationally declared line of poverty with a poor GDP per capita of just 454$. It took a long time to stabilize itself after independence. But with rising political and social conflicts, there were civil wars. They not only caused the death of a million people but also destroyed the economy of the nation.
It’s a very large country surrounded by sea. It claims the title of world fourth largest Island with a large population of 25 Million. It has diverse wildlife and natural resources, but political instability and illiteracy are the main causes of poverty. Locals use the same old land cultivating techniques which cause soil erosion and low production. This country is living under the line of poverty with a GDP per capita of 463$.
We end our list of poorest countries in Africa with the Congo, which is blessed with many natural resources, but these resources are jeopardized due to political instability, poor administration, and international interference. Corruption is noxiously high in this country. Because of these reasons this nation is probably the least fortunate nation on the planet as well. It is living under the line of poverty with a low GDP per capita of 484$.
World, history, and nature haven’t been kind to Africa. Moreover, there are very many internal reasons why most African countries are still underdeveloped. The civil wars, political conflicts, famines and poor use of resources have crippled the overall economy of the country. Many NGOs and international welfare organizations are working for the betterment of locals in Africa but the situations are far from being good as most of the poor countries in Africa are also the poorest in the world. In the majority, their locals are not earning more than a dollar daily. The most important things this continent needs right now are proper health, educational services, food and, most importantly hope.
I hope that this article on poor countries in Africa was helpful. If you are interested, visit the Country Rankings Page!