Economic Report on Africa 1986
Author(s)/Corporate Author (s)United Nations. Economic Commission for Africa;
African Development Bank;
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The year 1985 marks the end of the first half of a decade and the beginning of the second. The overall assessment of the performance of the economy over the last five years leaves one with no alternative but to conclude that it was one of the most difficult periods for developing Africa.The African economy was on a downward slide, prompted both by external and internal factors. Externally, the balance-of-payments position has continued to deteriorate, leadings to the depletion of reserves and increased indebtedness. Domestically, the growth rate of GDP has been consistently below the rate of population growth. The result was a marked" decline in the standard of living of the people. Compared to 1980, income per head has fallen by no less than 12 per cent by 1985. The agricultural sector suffered both from natural and policy impediments. The 1983-1985 drought, the worst in living memory, devastated the rural economy and wrought suffering in a number of countries. Domestic policy shortcomings also made its own mark in the continuing deterioration of the sector.