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20 stark facts on Africa/20 famous sayings which may have resonance in Africa

A POUND OF COTTON CAN BE PRODUCED FOR 18c (12p) IN BURKINA FASO COMPARED TO 63c (42p) IN THE U.S. YET, BIZARRELY, THE U.S. GOVERNMENT SUBSIDISES AMERCIAN COTTON FARMERS TO THE DETRIMENT OF SOME OF THE POOREST PEOPLE IN THE WORLD

HUNGER KILLS MORE PEOPLE IN AFRICA THAN ALL THE CONTINENT'S INFECTIOUS DISEASES PUT TOGETHER

ACCORDING TO A WORLD BANK REPORT IN 2016 THE NUMBER OF AFRICANS LIVING IN EXTREME POVERTY INCREASED BY 100 MILLION BETWEEN 1990 AND 2012.

62% OF THE URBAN POPULATION IN SUB-SAHARAN AFRICA LIVE IN SLUMS

COLLECTIVELY THE ANNUAL BUDGETS OF ALL GOVERNMENTS IN AFRICA TOTAL US$450bn (£290bn) YET INTERNATIONAL NGO's LAMBAST WESTERN GOVERNMENTS FOR FAILING TO DOUBLE AID TO AFRICA FROM US$25bn (£16bn) IN 2005.

ONLY 3.8% OF AFRICA'S WATER IS DEVELOPED

ACCORDING TO A HASTILY WITHDRAWN REPORT BY THE AFRICAN UNION CORRUPTION COSTS AFRICA US$150bn (£96bn) EVERY YEAR

ONLY 16% OF ROADS ARE PAVED

IN MOZAMBIQUE IT IS CLAIMED THERE ARE 26 DIFFERENT DONORS WORKING IN THE EDUCATION SECTOR. THE RESULT - SUBSTANTIAL DISORGANISATION

EVERY JOB CREATED IN AFRICA FEEDS TEN MOUTHS

IT IS ESTIMATED THAT 60% OF THE WORLD'S NATURAL RESOURCES LIE IN AFRICAN SOIL

AVERAGE LIFE EXPECTANCY SUB-SAHARAN AFRICA IS 57 YEARS

ONLY 4% OF MONEYS ALLOCATED IN AFRICAN BUDGETS GOES TO AGRICULTURE YET 75% OF THE POPULATION RELY ON FARMING

TO INCORPORATE A BUSINESS IN MOZAMBIQUE TAKES 153 DAYS AND IN SIERRA LEONE IT COSTS 1250% OF AVERAGE INCOME

90% OF AFRICANS NOW HAVE A MOBILE PHONE

FEWER THAN 10% OF AFRICANS HAVE A LEGAL TITLE TO THEIR OWN HOMES

THE BRITISH MEDICAL JOURNAL CALCULATES THAT 23,000 DOCTORS AND NURSES LEAVE THE CONTINENT EVERY YEAR

ACCORDING TO THE WORLD BANK ONLY 1 IN 6 PROJECTS FINANCED BY THE BANK IN SUB-SAHARAN AFRICA CONTINUE AFTER FUNDING STOPS

ACCORDING TO SOME EXPERTS IT WILL TAKE AN ESTIMATED 50 YEARS OF PEACE FOR THE PEOPLE OF THE DEMOCRATIC REPUBLIC OF CONGO JUST TO GET BACK TO THE LIVING STANDARDS IN 1960 WHEN BELGIUM PULLED OUT

FOR 10 YEARS NOW AVERAGE ECONOMIC GROWTH ACROSS SUB-SAHARAN AFRICA HAS BEEN 5%p.a. HOWEVER, WITH FEW EXTRA JOBS BEING CREATED, EVER MORE MOUTHS TO FEED, AND THE GAP BETWEEN THE RICH AND POOR WIDENING, THE MAJORITY OF AFRICANS ARE NO BETTER OFF. ACCORDING TO CREDIT SUISSE THE MIDDLE CLASS IN AFRICA HAS ONLY RISEN FROM 18.4 MILLION IN 2000 TO 18.8 MILLION IN 2015.

ACCORDING TO THE UN ECONOMIC COMMISSION FOR AFRICA ONLY 17% OF AFRICA'S EXTERNAL TRADE IS WITH OTHER AFRICAN COUNTRIES. FOR THE EU COUNTRIES TRADING AMONGST THEMSELVES THE FIGURE IS 60%

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The total area of Africa is 30,300,000 sq km or 11,684,711 sq miles (20.4% of area of the world) of which 24,500,000 sq km or 9,461,000 sq miles is represented by sub-Saharan Africa. Africa, in size, is roughly the same as that of the US, China, the EU and Australia - added together. Sudan is the largest country - almost 5 times the size of France.

Total population of Africa was 1.263bn in 2016 (16.4% of world total) of which just over 1bn (12.6%) live in sub-Saharan Africa. Africa is the fastest growing continent where the population is expected to double by 2050.

Total size of the economy of Africa is $2,147bn (2.8% of world total) of which $1,498bn (2.0%) represents the total for sub-Saharan Africa. Of the sub-Saharan total of $1,498bn, South Africa represents $294bn or 20% of the total. From World Bank statistics 8 nations in sub-Saharan Africa have seen average incomes fall in the last 50 years - Chad, D R Congo, Cote d'Ivoire, Liberia, Niger, Senegal, Zambia and Zimbabwe.

According to United Nations Development Programme (UNDP) South Africa has the highest level of income inequality in the world.

Nearly half the continent's people live on <US$1.25 per day.

Only 3.4% of Foreign Direct Investment touched Africa in 2016.

Sub-Saharan Africa is responsible for only 4% of the world's greenhouse gas emissions each year. (China 23.6%; US 18.3%; EU 14.1%)

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'Recall the face of the poorest person you have seen today and ask yourself if the step you contemplate is going to be of any use to them.' Mahatma Gandhi

'When the missionaries came to Africa, they had the Bible and we had the land. They said "Let us pray." We closed our eyes. When we opened them we had the Bible and they had the land.' Desmond Tutu, former Archbishop of Cape Town

'A new birth of freedom in the form of government of the people, by the people and for the people shall not perish from the Earth.' President Abraham Lincoln

'Civilisation will be judged on how Africa will be developed in the coming years.' Horst Kohler, ex MD, IMF and President of Germany

'It's not how people vote that counts, it's who counts the votes.' Joseph Stalin

'To die of want in a world of surplus is not only intellectually absurd but equally morally repulsive.' Bob Geldof

'It is necessary only for good men to do nothing for evil to triumph.' Edmund Burke, Anglo-Irish statesman and philosopher

'In the terrible history of famine in the world, no substantial famine has ever occurred in any independent and democratic country with a relatively free press. We cannot find exceptions to this rule, no matter where we look.' Amartya Sen, Nobel prize winning economist

It doesn't matter whether a cat is black or white as long as it can catch mice. Deng Xiaoping, President of China

'The great powers have been to the moon and back and are now reaching for the stars but in Africa we are still trying to reach the village.' President Julius Nyrere of Tanzania

'Little else is requisite to carry a state to the highest degree of opulence from lowest barbarism but peace, easy taxes and tolerable administration.' Adam Smith, economist in 'Wealth of Nations (1776)

'Africa's crisis was a failure of leadership and management. Sub-Saharan Africa is rich in resources, talent, energy and spirit. But it has not been rich in leadership. It is made up of rich countries that have been poorly managed.' Ellen Johnson-Sirleaf, President of Liberia

'As a result of the experience of the last 50 years in global governance there is ample evidence from around the world as to what works and what doesn't. The tough part is not knowing what to do, but doing it. Tony Blair, UK prime minister

'One does not organise elections to end up on the losing side.' Pascal Lissouba, President of Republic of Congo.

'We make a living from what we get; we make a life by what we give.' Winston Churchill, UK Prime Minister

No country is going to create wealth if its leaders exploit the economy to enrich themselves, or police can be bought off by drug traffickers. No business wants to invest in a place where government skims 20% off the top, or the head of the port authority is corrupt. No person wants to live in a society where the rule of law gives way to the rule of brutality and bribery. That is not democracy, that is tyranny - even if you sprinkle an election in it. And now is the time for it to end. Africa doesn't need strong men: it needs strong institutions.' President Obama

'The greatest leader is not necessarily the one who does the greatest things; he is the one who gets the people to do the greatest things. President Ronald Reagan

'Today is only a success if you have done something for someone who can't repay you.' John Bunyan, 17th century English novelist

'The brave may not live for ever but the cautious do not live at all.' African proverb

'We work best when we work together.' President Clinton

 
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