The richest countries have one thing in common, a proper and well established political environment supported by clear legislation, a corrupt-free government, and a strong judicial system. While these factors are only a drop in the ocean regarding what makes a country economically successful, the poorest countries in the world get these factors all wrong.
While the availability of natural resources is the foundation of an economically robust country, utilising the resources well is a whole other aspect. This is not civic education 101, so we will get straight to the point and list the countries yet to realise self-actualisation.
- Madagascar- GMP per capita $1477
Madagascar’s economy is largely founded on their huge agricultural potential. Madagascar has performed relatively well in limiting its trade barriers so that they can protect their agricultural base. Over the years poor economic reforms and political instability have negatively affected the economy. There has been uneven growth in various sectors of the economy and this has hindered their growth. Large spread poverty and corruption have hindered growth in the private sector due to lack of enough funds for the common people to do business.
2.Guinea –GDP per capita $1388
Since independence Guinea has made little progress economically. This has been attributed to poor structural reform of the economy. This has led to uneven economic development. This is evident in the private sector. This dynamic sector has stagnant growth mainly because of the very weak government institutions. Furthermore, their judicial system has bowed down to political interference and it has been poor in dealing with corruption. Guinea is rich in minerals such as bauxite, iron, diamond and gold but due to major civil strife, they haven’t been able to fully tap the potential of their mining industry. Guinea’s external debt level is over $1.358 billion.
3.Eritrea – GDP per capita $1210
Eritrea’s economy is one of the most stagnant economies in growth. The sector has been hugely underdeveloped. The judicial system is very weak in dealing with corruption and their rulers have been poor in developing and bringing major economic reforms. This has led to major emigration since 1998 and this has affected their labour base. The public sector is still the major source of employment because the private sector has defoliated significantly. Severe drought in the region has hindered significant agricultural growth in the country. Poor economic laws such as state ownership of land only will continue to distort the economy.
4.Mozambique – GDP per capita $1208
Mozambique has made major reforms so as to improve its current economic status but huge unsustainable public debt and rampant inflation have hindered these reforms. In 2016 they had the slowest economic growth since their independence. They are currently unable to pay external debts under the agreed timelines. But economist project that in the coming years their situation will improve because of better prices and a greater demand for gas and coal products. The private sector has gained huge progress since independence and better government reforms will see an increase in Foreign Direct Investments.
5.Niger- GDP per capita $1069
Niger is a best case example of countries that are mineral – rich but have poor economic growth. Niger has vast reservoirs of uranium and oil but unstable global prices have severely crippled the economy. Lack of a diverse economy has hindered Niger’s growth. A poor judicial system and poor reforms have led to widespread corruption. Poor economic policies and institutions have failed to provide an adequate base to nurture a broad-based private sector. Niger also faces a poorly developed labour market which is mostly concentrated in the informal sector.
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