South Africa may drop below Egypt in GDP rankings


Africa’s Gross Domestic Product (GDP)

In Africa – the IMF does not publish dollar GDP estimates for Egypt in case anyone realises that the currency may weaken …but we do.  And if I add in Egypt – I discover that South Africa is just $2bn larger than Egypt in 2015 (if IMF and Rencap forecasts are correct).  How the mighty have fallen.  The FT news editor on Monday called SA a colossus in Africa – but now it is on the verge of falling into third place. 

Give it two years and I’d expect SA to be ahead of Egypt though – the rand is cheap and the Egyptian Pound is expensive.  Give it five years … then Egypt President Abdel Fattah el-Sisi’s reform effort (and the larger population) may put it ahead permanently.


Note even if Nigeria devalued by 15 per cent as we expect or even a more dramatic 30 per cent (as implied by our Real Effective Exchange Rate piece) – it would be ahead of everyone else.



Source: IMF, Rencap