Africa

Which is Africa's most competitive country?

By Thomas Page, for CNN

Updated 10:41 AM ET, Wed December 23, 2015
Share
gabon timbre librevillegabon timbre libreville
1 of 10
For the seventh year in a row, Switzerland has come first in the The World Economic Forum's Global Competitiveness Report. But whilst the top of the global table is much the same, Africa is on the move. The tenth most competitive economy in Africa is Gabon according to the 2015-2016 report. Built on strong timber, oil and mining sectors, Gabon's GDP sits considerably above the Sub-Saharan average. Rating strongly for its macroeconomic environment, Gabon's respectable institutions indicator is let down by efficiency enhancers and innovation factors. AFP/AFP/AFP/Getty Images
Corruption is the most problematic factor when it comes to business in Kenya, according the WEF. Strong indicators include labor market efficiency and financial market, but the country has slipped nine places down the global table compared to last year. Courtesy: Kenya Tourism Board
The World Economic Forum was only able to use data from their 2014 survey when assessing the Seychelles. Its GDP, buoyed by strong tourism, is much higher than the region as a whole, but market size and development of financial systems are both inhibitors for overall competitiveness. ROBERTO SCHMIDT/AFP/AFP/Getty Images
Tourism in Zambia, including trips to Livingstone and Victoria Falls, is a key factor behind growth. But whilst its macroeconomic environment is steady and its institutions are moving in a positive direction, infrastructure still leaves much to be desired STEPHANE DE SAKUTIN/AFP/AFP/Getty Images
This year's highest riser, Cote d'Ivoire jumped 24 places globally off the back its strengthened financial market and domestic competition. Access to financing remains a big issue for the world's largest cocoa exporter, but the quality of its institutions have improved markedly. ISSOUF SANOGO/AFP/AFP/Getty Images
With a favorable goods market efficiency and strong scores within technology and innovation, Namibia has all the factors in place to build upon its renewable energy sector. Improving seven places since 2012-2013, the country stakes its claim as the fifth most competitive economy in Africa.
STR/AFP/AFP/Getty Images
Known as an economy bolstered by its diamond industry, Botswana is recovering from the global financial downturn which wiped out 30% of the sector. There is still considerable work to be done in amending inefficient government bureaucracy and labor force worth ethic, but its position within Africa's top economies is consolidated by its macroeconomic environment and, amongst other things, one of the highest rates of mobile phone subscription in the world. MONIRUL BHUIYAN/AFP/AFP/Getty Images
Within the top 20 nations globally for the quality of its institutions and labor market efficiency, Rwanda continues its five-year ascent. Its tea industry may be growing, but low infrastructure, health and higher education rankings are preventing it climbing higher up the rankings. PHIL MOORE/AFP/AFP/Getty Images
Reversing its four-year downturn, South Africa climbed seven places in the global rankings, largely due to the increased uptake of digital technology -- a factor facilitated by improvements in internet bandwidth and overall availability. Getty Images/File
It may seem like an unlikely winner, but Mauritius' powerhouse economy has come top in Africa for the second year running. Mauritius, ranked 46th globally -- down from 39th in 2014-2015 -- has benefited from political stability and a tourism industry that sees nearly a million visitors travel to the island group every year. Despite the slip down the global rankings, the nation still scored strongly in terms of infrastructure, business sophistication and higher education, with jewelry production and large-scale sugar cane farming accounting for a large amount of exports. TripAdvisor Traveler Photo