Nigeria is Africa’s largest economy – IMF

Ebun Francis with agency reports

Nigeria has been affirmed by the International Monetary Fund (IMF) as the biggest economy in Africa — ahead of South Africa and Egypt, not withstanding the fact the Country is currently being ravaged by  recession.

It will be recalled that in August 2016, Nigeria was reported to have lost its spot as Africa’s biggest economy to South Africa, following the recalculation of the country’s gross domestic product (GDP).

“A recalculation using current exchange rates put South Africa on top because the rand has strengthened against the dollar,” according to a report in BBC in August.

“Based on gross domestic product at the end of 2015 published by the International Monetary Fund, the size of South Africa’s economy is $301 billion at the rand’s current exchange rate, while Nigeria’s GDP is $296 billion,” Bloomberg said.

However, latest estimates from the IMF put Nigeria’s GDP at $415.080 billion, from $493.831 billion at the end of 2015.

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The IMF World Economic Outlook for October 2016 puts South Africa’s GDP at $280.367 billion, from $314.732 billion a year earlier.

Egypt’s 2016 data was reported as not available, but its 2015 size remained at $330.159 while that of Algeria, one of the largest economies on the continent, was put at $168.318 billion.

The United States, China and Japan maintained their spots as the largest economies in the world, with a GDP of $18.561 trillion, $11.391 trillion and $4.73 trillion respectively, followed by Germany, United Kingdom and France in that order.