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The Role of Cities in Africa’s Rise






With a population of one billion and an economy likely to double in size from US$2 trillion to US$4 trillion before 2025, Africa has quickly emerged as the next economic driver for the global economy. While the success of Africa’s rise is well-founded, a far more granular approach to grasping the nuances and realising the opportunities is essential. This goes beyond country-by-country assessments. A deeper assessment of this economic energy and growth reveals that it will be largely driven by Africa’s emerging cities. The nature of the business environment in Africa will increasingly demand a far more city-oriented investment approach.

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The megacity – The tenuous balance between opportunity and despair











By 2030, for the first time in history, 60% of the world’s population will be living in cities. And not just ordinary cities, but huge urban agglomerations called megacities. While these super-sized cities are often considered fundamental to economic development – offering inhabitants tremendous opportunities – they can also be hotbeds of misery and poverty.

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Nairobi to test drive Kenya Power’s smart meters project

Facts on African cities











The emergence of African cities is the highest form of social organisation, often associated with advancing human development with cities incorporating economic, cultural and political factors. For instance Lagos in Nigeria has boomed from 300 000 inhabitants in 1960 to over 17 million today and Johannesburg is the largest city which boasts some of the richest mineral deposits the world has ever seen …

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Africa’s 7 Megacities: The Catalysts











It is projected that by 2016, over 500 million Africans will live in urban centres, and the number of cities with more than 1 million people is expected to reach 65, compared to 52 in 2011. This is already on par with Europe and higher than India and North America. With 40 percent of its population living in cities, Africa is more urbanized than India (30 percent) and nearly as urbanized as China (45 percent).

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Prioritising Africa’s megacities











Whilst Africa is often perceived as a mysterious, underdeveloped continent, it’s quickly becoming one of the most valuable emerging markets for infrastructure. In fact, infrastructure development – in the form of megacities – is one of the key strategic priorities for senior African leaders. What’s driving infrastructure development in Africa?

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African cities: Key challenges and rising urbanisation











While African cities do bring with them great economic growth prospects and coordinated development, and urbanisation is often associated with rising incomes and better living standards, lack of resources, inadequate infrastructure and poor planning or management pose enormous challenges …

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The emergence of the African city











Africa’s rate of urbanisation and the development of cities has been slow, but the rise of emerging African cities has coincided with the continent’s growth and rejuvenation …

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