Lagos set to overtake Johannesburg as second largest African city by GDP

Date: Dec 27, 2017

Lagos is set to overtake Johannesburg as Africa’s second largest city by gross domestic product (GDP) by 2035, according to a report by Mark Britton, associate director at Oxford Economics.

Lagos is expected to gain from policy reforms focused on improving the support for private firms. The city is forecast to become the most populous African city. Its population is expected to be 28.5 million by 2035 – more than double its current size.

The Global Cities report looked at urban trends. It provides an overview of the economic outlook for 780 city metros around the world. The data used covered headline economic, demographic and labour market forecasts, as well as household income and spending, growth in employment and output across key sectors.

The report found that Africa is set for rapid urbanisation and GDP growth with city populations to nearly double by 2035. The population of 93 main African cities is expected to rise to a total of 370 million from around 200 million in 2016.

Yet, despite the robust economic growth predicted, Oxford Economics forecasts that the majority of African cities will continue to remain relatively small in terms of scale. Therefore, it is not expected that any of the ten fastest growing African cities, except Cairo, will enter the top 100 global cities in 2035 based on GDP.

African cities are forecast to experience strong GDP growth of 4.5% per year in the period to 2035, exceeding the global city average of 2.9%.

With GDP growth exceeding population growth, GDP per capita within African cities will rise significantly over the forecast period. However, despite that, GDP per capita levels are expected to remain substantially behind the rest of the world by 2035, according to the report.




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