Economic growth in sub-Saharan Africa is projected to pick up from 4.9 percent in 2013 to about 5½ percent this year. This acceleration reflects improved prospects in a large number of countries in the region, including most oil exporters and several low-income countries and fragile states. Economic activity in the region continues to be underpinned by large investments in infrastructure and mining and maturing investments. Inflation looks set to remain contained in most countries, while fiscal balances, on current policies and prospects, are generally projected to improve in 2014. Current account deficits look to remain elevated, including due to the ongoing high level of infrastructure investment and foreign direct investment related imports.
This solid near-term outlook is nonetheless subject to downside risks. External factors pose by far the more potent threats to the region as a whole, but domestic risks are more significant in some countries.