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Africa is home to over 1.3 billion people and is the second-largest continent in the world. It is known for its rich natural and cultural diversity. Many African nations are seeing robust economic growth and development in spite of a variety of social and economic obstacles.

Gross domestic product, or GDP, is the most widely used indicator of a nation's wealth. It gauges the market output, which is the total monetary worth of all the goods and services generated over the course of a year by an economy.

The wealthiest nations in Africa will be examined in this article based on their GDPs, or gross domestic product, which is a gauge of the amount of goods and services generated in a specific time frame. We'll take a close look at some of the major drivers of economic success in the top ten wealthiest African nations. Although GDP is only one indicator of economic prosperity, it offers a fascinating place to start when analyzing the continent of Africa's economic environment.

Top 10 Richest Countries in Africa by Nominal GDP Today
Top 10 Richest Countries in Africa by Nominal GDP Today

Top 10 Richest Countries With the Biggest Economy In Africa Today

1. Egypt

Egypt is currently the biggest economic force on the African continent, according to GDP (PPP) statistics. Aiming to increase development and attract foreign investment, the country's open economy and reform program, which was put into place between 2006 and 2008, allowed it to register high annual growth rates of 7% and catapult it into the top tier of Africa's richest nations.

The most recent OECD report predicts that Egypt's economic growth will quicken. It is anticipated that inflation will decline as the effects of currency devaluation lessen, which will support the recovery of household consumption. Business investment will pick up speed once uncertainty is eliminated and financial conditions normalize. Because exporters are supported, exports from the country may even rise.

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2. Nigeria

Nigeria is among the richest countries in Africa because it is the continent's biggest exporter of crude oil. The primary driver of that high GDP is oil exports. Nigeria is well-known for its niobium, limestone, and natural gas. Regretfully, following the spread of COVID-19, Nigeria and other African nations were unable to withstand the severe decline in the global market. The contentious alliances between Saudi Arabia, the United States, and Russia also have a big effect on South Africa's GDP. It appears that effective administration can maintain the nation's top spot.

Nigeria is endowed with an abundance of natural resources, such as minerals, gemstones, and oil (5.6 percent of GDP), but the services sector accounts for 52% of the country's GDP.

3. South Africa

With a GDP of $380 billion and a purchasing power parity of $868.58 billion, South Africa is the most developed and technologically advanced nation on the continent. With one industry on par with developed nations and another in dire need of basic infrastructure, it has a two-speed economy. Regarding natural resource wealth, South Africa ranks among the richest nations in Africa. Having contributed significantly to the progress of the region, it is also the richest country in Southern Africa, making up 25% of the continent's GDP.

The tertiary sector, which includes postindustrial economic activities like trade, transportation, and services, accounts for 69% of South Africa's GDP. (Mining and agriculture are examples of primary economic activities; manufacturing is an example of a secondary economic activity.)

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4. Algeria

Algeria has experienced tremendous economic growth despite frequent political instability thanks to its abundant natural resources, which include natural gas and oil. The hydrocarbon industry has slowed down due to political unpredictability and corruption. Notwithstanding these obstacles, the nation maintains its high GDP.

Realizing that fossil fuels have their limits, the nation is now looking to diversify, especially in renewable energy, taking advantage of its favorable solar power potential.

5. Ethiopia

Over the past few years, Ethiopia's economy has expanded at an average annual rate of 6.0%. Significant capital accumulation, especially from investments in public infrastructure, was the main driver of this growth, though there were other contributing factors as well. With 123 million citizens, it is the second most populous nation on the African continent and has one of the fastest-growing economies in the world.

The nation's agriculture and economy as a whole have been impacted by political unrest, food shortages, and droughts. An excessive reliance on the energy sector, particularly oil, has further harmed these sectors. Conflicts also pose a threat to the nation's accomplishments in social and economic development in many areas.

6. Morocco


Morocco is a stunning nation located in North Africa. Morocco's GDP growth rate stabilized somewhat at the start of the current century, following years of hardship during the 1990s. Morocco's GDP is estimated to have grown by 2.482 percent per year for 2023, totaling USD 147 billion. This nation actively exports a range of goods and services and ranks third in the world for phosphorus production. The main exports from Morocco are inorganic chemicals, crude minerals, petroleum products, and electric components; statistics and data show how important a role these exports play in the GDP of this nation.

7. Kenya

Kenya separated from the British Empire in 1963. With a $112.74 billion GDP in 2024, it is regarded as East Africa's hub for commerce, finance, industry, and logistics. Even though it is the most industrialized nation in the area, the economy still depends heavily on agriculture. Kenya also has reserves of rare earth minerals, gold, and titanium in addition to a rapidly expanding tech sector. The young age of the population will have a significant effect on the economy of the nation.

8. Angola

Angola is a nation in Central Africa with a varied topography. To balance its economy, Angola has been strengthening its political and structural reforms. The country has abundant resources of gold, granite, copper, feldspar, iron ore, phosphates, diamonds, petroleum, oil, and uranium. Angola's GDP is $93.79 billion, or $7,080 per person, making it the eighth largest economy in Africa according to GDP.

Between 2002 and 2016, economic growth accelerated despite a four-decade period of independence and civil wars, with average growth of 9% in the four years preceding 2008. Between 2000 and 2010, Angola's GDP grew by 11.1% yearly on average, which boosted the country's non-oil industries and established it as one of the richest countries in Central Africa.

9. Tanzania

In 2024, Tanzania's GDP was $84 billion. It is currently undergoing industrialization, with manufacturing, transportation, infrastructure, mining, renewable energy, and agriculture responsible for a large portion of its growth. Numerous minerals and metals, including copper and gold, can be found in the nation, including graphite and phosphate. Tanzania is home to some of the most well-known natural landmarks in Africa, including Mount Kilimanjaro and national parks, albeit the tourism industry was negatively impacted by the pandemic.

10. Ivory Coast (Côte d'Ivoire)

The Ivory Coast, or Côte d'Ivoire, had a GDP of roughly $80 billion in 2024. Since gaining independence in 1960, it has developed into one of West Africa's most stable economies. Because agriculture is so vital, a lot of companies concentrate on processing rubber, cashews, cocoa, cotton, and palm oil. One of the most important products in the nation and frequently the top supplier worldwide is cocoa. The economic outlook for Côte d'Ivoire is favorable due to its excellent handling of the COVID-19 pandemic.

Africa's Countries With the Biggest Economy - Full List

Rank Country GDP 2024 (in billion U.S. dollars) Gross Average Monthly Wages (USD, at current exchange rates) Life expectancy at birth, total (years)
1 Egypt 398.39 222 70.22
2 Nigeria 390 166 52.68
3 South Africa 380.9 1362 62.34
4 Algeria 224.1 249 76.38
5 Ethiopia 155.8 78 64.98
6 Morocco 147.34 1657 74.04
7 Kenya 112.74 416 61.43
8 Angola 93.79 27 61.64
9 Tanzania 84.03 75 66.2
10 Ivory Coast (Côte d'Ivoire) 79.43 97 58.6
11 Ghana 76.62 244 63.8
12 DR Congo 67.51 81 59.19
13 Uganda 52.39 74 62.71
14 Tunisia 51.27 277 73.77
15 Cameroon 49.26 86 60.33
16 Libya 40.19 68 71.91
17 Zimbabwe 32.42 62 59.25
18 Senegal 31.14 49 67.09
19 Zambia 29.53 75 61.22
20 Sudan 25.56 76 65.27
21 Guinea 23.2 430 58.89
22 Mozambique 21.93 67 59.33
23 Mali 21.3 34 58.94
24 Burkina Faso 20.78 71 59.27
25 Botswana 20.75 416 61.14
26 Benin 19.94 110 79.28
27 Gabon 19.31 65 65.82
28 Niger 17.07 47 61.58
29 Madagascar 15.76 47 64.49
30 Mauritius 14.81 486 73.68
31 Congo 14.4 57 63.52
32 Rwanda 13.92 78 66.07
33 Malawi 13.17 31 62.9
34 Namibia 12.64 58 59.27
35 Chad 12.59 67 52.53
36 Somalia 11.51 68 55.28
37 Mauritania 10.35 41 64.36
38 Equatorial Guinea 10.04 75 60.59
39 Togo 9.11 65 61.62
40 South Sudan 6.26 71 54.98
41 Eswatini 4.64 65 57.07
42 Liberia 4.34 47 60.75
43 Djibouti 3.87 142 62.31
44 Sierra Leone 3.51 65 60.06
45 Burundi 3.19 316 61.66
46 Central African Republic 2.76 76 53.9
47 Cape Verde 2.59 125 74.05
48 Gambia 2.38 74 62.08
49 Lesotho 2.37 24 53.06
50 Eritrea 2.25 62 66.54
51 Seychelles 2.08 108 73.4
52 Guinea-Bissau 1.99 68 59.65
53 Comoros 1.36 55 63.42

Roles of Natural Resources and Wealth Distributions

Many African nations are wealthy largely because of their natural resources. Rich mineral, oil, and gas deposits have propelled economic expansion in nations like South Africa, Angola, and Nigeria. The "resource curse," in which nations with an abundance of resources find it difficult to grow economically as a result of issues like corruption, poor governance, and a lack of investment in other economic sectors, is one example of the economic difficulties that can arise from an overreliance on natural resources.

Another important factor to take into account when talking about the richest nations in Africa is the distribution of wealth. Many African countries have high rates of income inequality, which means that the wealth created is not always distributed to the general populace. Addressing issues with wealth distribution and promoting inclusive growth can lead to a society that is more stable and prosperous.

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