Top 15 Richest Countries In Africa (Based On GDP Per Capita)

(Last Updated On: December 16, 2019)

Africa is the world’s second largest and second most populous continent boasting of a population size of about 1.8 billion people accounting for 16% of the world’s human population. It is home to 54 fully recognized countries, 9 territories, and two de facto independent states with limited or no recognition. The following is a list of the richest countries in Africa based on their nominal GDP per capita which is basically a measure of a country’s economic production value when distributed to each individual citizen. It effectively gives out a view of the expected purchasing power for the citizens of the country hence citizens of a country with higher GDP per capita have a much higher purchasing power of global goods.

1. Seychelles

Seychelles is an archipelago of 115 islands in the Indian Ocean and home to a population of about 98,000 people. It has a GDP per capita of $17,052 and a GDP size of 1.6 billion USD. Tourism is the biggest foreign exchange earning in this country and account for about 20% of the GDP bringing in more than $600 million in a year. It gets an average of 325,000 arrival per year from countries like Germany, France, UK, UAE, Italy and Switzerland. About 15% of the formal work force is directly employed in tourism and employment in construction, banking, transportation is closely tied to the tourist industry It is also a big exporter of tuna fish and the fishing industry is a very important economic pillar to the country. Heinz owns more than half of the Seychelles Tuna Canning Factory. It also a big producer of prawns and often licenses its waters to foreign fishermen.

2. Mauritius

This is a country located at the Indian Ocean and has a population size of over 1.7 million people. According to IMF it has a GDP per capita of $11,360 and a total GDP of $14.3 billion. The economy is dependent on agriculture, exports, financial services and tourism. It enjoys the best business environment in Africa and according to the World Bank it ranks first in the continent for ease of doing business. Sugarcane is the country’s major export and it occupies about 90% of its total cultivation land. Jewellery, watch and diamond production currently make up 10% of the foreign exports adding over $150 million to the GDP. The country has been able to attract various companies to set up base there thanks to its favorable tax laws such as 15% corporate tax rate, no tax on dividends or capital gains, personal tax rates at 15% and double taxation treaties with 33 countries. The country gets an average of 1.4 million tourist arrivals per year who generate an average of $1.83 billion a year for the country.

 

3. Equatorial Guinea.

It is located on the west coast of Central Africa and has a population size of 1.3 million people growing by at average rate of 3%. According to the IMF it has a GDP per capita of 8,927 and a GDP size of 12 billion USD. Its economy is mainly dependent on crude oil which generates 90% of the foreign revenues thanks to its production rate of 300,000 bpd. Other commodities that is produces are cocoa and coffee. More than 3/4 of government revenue comes from oil hence budgets are highly influenced by the price of oil.





4. Gabon

This is a country located along the Atlantic coast of Central Africa and is home to a population size of over 2.2 million people. It has a GDP per capita of $8,112 and a total GDP size of $16.8 billion. The oil sector accounts for 50% of the GDP, 60% of government revenue and 80% of exports. It produces an average of 198,000 barrels per day but this has been on a decline due to depleted reserves on the major oil mining areas.

5. Botswana

This is a landlocked country in Southern Africa whose landscape is defined by the Kalahari Desert and the Okavango Delta. It is home to 2.3 million people. Its GDP per capita sits at $7,859 while the total GDP size is $18.69 billion. The country is among the world’s three largest diamond producers producing 23 million carats a year which results to $3.3 billion in revenue. Diamonds revenue account for 76% of export revenue, 45% of government revenue and 33% of GDP. Tourism industry has also been a big boost to the economy of Botswana. It gets an average of 1.6 million tourist arrivals per year who generate an average of $2.7 billion a year for the country.

6. South Africa

It is the southernmost country in Africa and has a population size of over 58 million people. It has a GDP per capita of $6,100 and a total GDP size of $358 billion, making it the second largest in Africa right after Nigeria. It is a regional manufacturing hub, the most industrialized and diversified economy in Africa. According to the World Bank it is an upper middle income economy, joining the ranks of Botswana, Gabon and Mauritius. The economy is primarily driven by the tertiary sector which accounts 65% of the nominal GDP. The economy is diversified into different sectors such as mining, agriculture, fisheries, vehicle manufacturing and assembly, food procession, clothing and textiles etc. 85% of the top 20 biggest companies in Africa have originated from South Africa and spread their wings all over Africa.

7. Namibia

Namibia is located in the southwest of Africa and is distinguished by the Namib Desert along its Atlantic Ocean coast. It has a population size of 2.5 million people. It has a GDP per capita of $5,842 and a total GDP of $14.4 billion. The country is heavily dependent on the extraction and processing of minerals for export. Taxes and royalties from mining account for 25% of it revenue with the bulk coming from diamond mining. Uranium is also a major export. Half the population depend on subsistence agriculture for its livelihood. Commercial fishing and fish processing is the fastest growing sector of the economy.





8. Libya

The State Of Libya is located in the Maghreb region in North Africa, bordered by the Mediterranean Sea to the north. It is home to a population size of around 6.8 million people. The country has a GDP per capita of $5,019 according to the IMF and has a total GDP of $33 billion. Oil export revenues represent over 95% of export earnings and 60% of the GDP. It produces an average of 1.5 million barrels per day generating the country $24 – $29 billion in revenue depending on the month to month average production.

9. Eswatini

It is a small landlocked monarchy in southern Africa and home to 1.1 million people. It has a GDP per capita of $4,176 and a total GDP of $4.6 billion. Agriculture, forestry and mining account for 13% of the GDP while textiles and sugar related processing make up 37% of the GDP. Provision of government services make up close to 50% of GDP. The country is the 4th largest sugar producer in African and it is the largest export commodity.

10. Algeria

It is a country located in North Africa with a population of 43 million people. It has a GDP per capita of $3,980 and a total GDP size of $172 billion. Oil revenues are a very important pillar to the economy of Algeria. The country produces 1 million barrels per day of crude oil which account 95% of export earnings. However, due to sliding global oil prices, the country has been suffering with diminishing revenues and shrinking reserves from a high of $179 billion to less than $79 billion.

11. Cabo Verde

This is an island country spanning an archipelago of 10 volcanic islands in the central Atlantic Ocean. It is home to a population of about 550,000 people. It has a GDP per capita of $3,598 and a total GDP size of $2 billion. The country has poor natural resources, limited arable land, largely mountainous landscape and thinly spread population. It heavily relies on tourism and money sent back by a diaspora population larger than the population living within the borders. According to Cape Verdean statistics, tourist arrivals have surpassed 800,000 arrivals in 2019, most of these coming from the UK and Germany.

12. Morocco

It is a North African country bordering the Atlantic Ocean and Mediterranean Sea and home to a population of over 36.7 million people. It has a GDP per capita of $8,612 and a total GDP of around $119 billion. The services sector makes up over half of the GDP, agriculture 14% and industry (mining construction and manufacturing) contributing over 25%. It is the world’s third largest producer of phosphates which it processes into fertilizers and phosphoric acid for export. It also exports citrus fruits and early vegetables to the European market. Other major exports include machinery, textiles, construction materials, pharmaceuticals etc. Tourism is another fundamental economic pillar generating around $7.5 billion a year thanks to the 12 million annual tourists. The country also earned €33 million from foreign film making and television production.

13. Tunisia

It is a North African country which borders the Mediterranean Sea and the Sahara Desert. It is home to a population size of 11.7 million people. It has a GDP per capita of $3,287 and has a total GDP size of $38.7 billion. The economy is dependent on oil, phosphates, agri-food products, car parts manufacturing, textiles, electronics and tourism. An estimated 35,000 bpd of oil are produced and has a phosphate production of 5 million tonnes annually. The country is the largest supplier of textile and apparel to the EU generating around €2.8 billion annually. Tourism accounts for 8% of the gdp of the country thanks to tourist arrivals hitting 9 million annually. This generates an average revenue of $1.3 billion annually.

14. Egypt

This is a country located in the northeast Africa which dates tot the time of the pharaohs. It has an estimated population of over 100 million people. It has a GDP per capita of $3,037 and a total nominal GDP of $302 billion according to the IMF. Oil and gas exports are an important pillar to the Egyptian economy since they make up to 40% of the exports valued at $12 billion out of the total exports of $29.6 billion. Cotton and textiles account for 9% of exports while vegetables make up 13.2%. Gold and precious metals make up 9.3% of the export distribution. At its peak, tourism sector has been able to employ close to 12% of Egypt’s workforce. The country gets an average of 12 million tourist arrivals and from these they make $12.6 billion annually.

15. Angola

It is a Southern African nation bordering the Atlantic ocean and is home to a population size of 32.3 million people. It has a GDP per capital of $6,813 and a GDP size of $91 billion. The country’s economy is heavily reliant on oil income but majority of the population earns a living through the agricultural industry. It makes an average of $10.68 billion a year of oil income tax from its 1.4 million barrels per day making up 95% of its export revenues.