Sub-Saharan Africa Outbound - Africa - October 2010
In the years leading up to the current global recession, most sub-Saharan African countries enjoyed spectacular economic increases, with average annual growth in 2006-08 amounting to around 6%, according to the African Development Bank (AFDB). The African economies in question made significant gains from the rising value of commodities, increased debt relief and mounting foreign direct investment (FDI) inflows. Growth on the continent would have been even higher had it not been restrained by poor infrastructure and political instability in several regions. This buoyant economic growth translated partly into a sustained demand for outbound travel from the region, particularly intra-regional travel.
Less than 5% of the world’s outbound arrivals are generated by the countries of sub-Saharan Africa. In 2009, an estimated 21 million sub-Saharan Africans travelled outside their home country, primarily to other African destinations. Southern Africa accounts for 43% of all outbound departures.
South Africa is the largest single outbound segment in sub-Saharan Africa, accounting for a fifth of all outbound departures in the region. It was hit somewhat by the financial downturn of 2008-09, as consumers redirected their expenditure to other products. Nonetheless, it is set to recover, as South Africa’s economic climate improves.
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