What Is the Richest Country in Africa? (Comprehensive List)

Oil production, mining and agriculture are some of the economic activities that create the economies of the richest country in Africa.

This information will help to dissuade readers of the notion that all the countries in Africa are severely impoverished.

10 Richest African Countries

Let us look at the more prosperous African nations below, shall we?

#10 – Tanzania

With an estimated GDP of $45.899 billion, Tanzania’s has the second largest economy in East Africa and is the tenth richest country in Africa. The agriculture industry is the major contributor to the GDP followed closely by the industry and construction industry.

Among the country’s mineral deposits are diamond, bauxite, and gold, with gold being a major earner of export revenue. Tanzania also has a thriving tourism sector which is a major foreign exchange earner.

The GDP per capita is $ 943.797. However, income is unevenly distributed and an estimated 68% of the population lives below the poverty line.

#9 – Kenya

Kenya has the largest economy in East Africa, a GDP of $ 64.688 billion and a per capita GDP of $ 1,422.411. Since 2007, the Kenya economy has seen significant growth aided by expansion in its telecommunications and tourism industries.

Even though the agriculture sector is very unstable, it employs 75 percent of the country’s labor force. The ninth richest country in Africa, it is categorized as a medium developed country and 18% of the population lives below the poverty line.

#8 – Ethiopia

When other countries were experiencing economic depression, the economy of Ethiopia was flourishing. Over the last decade, growth in the economy increased the country’s GDP to $67.435 billion and its GDP per capita to $739.444.

The service industry is the major contributor to the GDP with the agriculture sector just behind. Ethiopia is the largest coffee exporter in Africa and the agriculture sector employs 85% of the labor force. Despite its GDP, a significant portion of the population is impoverished.

#7 – Angola

Angola is a country in Africa rich in mineral resources. The economy of Angola is said to be one of the fast growing economies in the world. The country has a GDP of $ 91.497 billion and a GDP per capita of $ 3,150.476.

Oil production and diamond exportation make up 60 percent of the country’s GDP. Discovery of oil deposits is the reason rapid growth the country has experienced over the last two decades.

The country has the potential for even more growth with the expansion of its agriculture and telecommunications sectors

#6 – Sudan

After the independence of South Sudan from Sudan in 2011, the economy came to a grinding halt. However, an increase in the production of oil soon revived the economy. Sudan is now the sixth richest country in Africa with a GDP of $2,366.970 billion and a GDP per capita of $98.729.

Even though oil production helped to boost growth, the GDP of the country is largely dependent on its agriculture sector. This sector contributes 39 per cent of the GDP and is the largest employer in the country.

#5 – Morocco

Morocco’s $145.096 billion GDP and $3,195.564 GDP make it the fifth richest country in Africa. Morocco exports the third largest quantity of phosphorous which makes it the largest earner of foreign exchange for the country.

The second is the tourism sector. The ancient cities and  rich history engraved in every brick attract tourists to the country.The ancient cities and the rich history engraved . The agriculture sector is, however, the largest employer

#4 – Algeria

The country generates a significant of its earnings from the exportation of oil and natural gas. Revenues generated from the mining industry rank Algeria as the fourth richest country in Africa. Algeria has a GDP of $180.974 billion and a GDP per capita of $4,082.572.

There is also the agriculture and service industries. These industries make up a small portion of the GDP but in recent years have seen some growth. The government has made efforts to diversify the economy by inviting foreign direct investments.

#3 – South Africa

A GDP of $310.213 billion and a GDP per capita of 4,768.235 ranks South Africa as the third richest country in Africa. The country has a very diversified economy. The country earns from its mining, agriculture, food processing, energy, telecommunications, tourism, and vehicle manufacturing industries.

South Africa exports gold and diamond. It is also the third largest exporter of coal in the world. It is one of four African countries identified as having an upper middle-income economy. Despite its position and resources, income is unevenly distributed and a large portion of the population is poor.

#2 – Egypt

The government of Egypt has instituted a number of reforms that have kept the economy stable. The country’s 2016 GDP of $330.765 billion and $3,740.249 GDP per capita make it the second richest country in Africa.

The natural gas, clothing and textile, services, manufacturing, and agriculture sectors support Egypt’s economy.

The economy is also boosted by flows of remittances and foreign direct investments. Only a few benefits from the economy, there is a high level of unemployment and poverty.

#1 – The Richest African Country: Nigeria

Nigeria’s 2016 GDP of $411.966 makes it the richest country in Africa. Sound economic policies have seen the GDP per capita increasing by 109 per cent to $2,929.525 in 2016 from 2000. The country in 2005 managed to have almost all of its external debt forgiven.

This country has the largest manufacturing, agriculture, and services sector in Africa. The services sector contributing 55 per cent of the economy is the largest sector in Nigeria. Oil production contributes 9 per cent of the GDP.

Richest Countries In Africa – Comprehensive Rankings

The 2018 best estimates of the richest countries in Africa are laid out below.

2016 RankCountryNominal GDP
($ billions)
Nominal GDP per capita(US$)
3South Africa310.2134,768.235
12Democratic Republic of the Congo41.207489.796
15Ivory Coast34.6681,425.056
25Burkina Faso11.872644.502
33Equatorial Guinea7.8849,604.286
40Sierra Leone4.095635.892
42South Sudan3.074245.901
47Central African Republic1.819372.165
48Cape Verde1.6253,057.916
51The Gambia0.886435.452
54São Tomé and Príncipe0.3491,681.379

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