Africa is the second most populated continent with a population of over 1.2 billion, and has the highest growth rate. In 2014, the growth rate of Africa was 2.5%. The country with the highest growth rate in Africa is South Sudan, followed by Niger, and then Burundi.
The 7 Fastest Growing Countries in Africa
With a population of 12,742,768 people, South Sudan is the 76th most populated nation in the world, and makes up approximately 0.17% of the global population. In 2015 the population of South Sudan was 11.88 million, which increased by 2.95% to 12.23 million in 2016. Between 2010 and 2015, the population of South Sudan had a 4.09% growth rate, which is the highest in the continent.
Niger is a landlocked nation located in West Africa and has a population of 21,880,885. Niger makes up approximately 0.28% of the global population, and is the world's 57th biggest country by population. According to the United Nations, Niger’s growth rate over the last six years is 4%, and continues to increase. In 2011 the population was 17,064,636, and grew by 3.9% to 17,731,634 in 2012.
With a population of 10,524,117, Burundi is the 85th biggest nation in the world, and makes up about 0.14% of the global population. In 2016 Burundi experienced a 3.2% growth rate, which is an increase of approximately 324,847, and a 1.94% increase from the previous year’s growth. The average growth rate of Burundi between 2010 and 2015 was 3.34% which makes Burundi the 3rd fastest growing nation in Africa.
Chad is a landlocked country in central Africa bordered by Niger, Sudan, Nigeria, and Cameroon. In 2016, Chad had a population of 14.45 million people, and was growing at a rate of 3.14%. Chad represents approximately 0.2% of the global population, and ranks 73rd in terms of population. Additionally, in the last five years, Chad has experienced an average growth rate of 3.31%.
Angola is the 7th largest country in Africa by size and 14th by population. Angola ranks 46th in the world, and makes up about 0.39% of the global population. In the last five years, the country experienced an average growth rate of 3.45%. The highest rate of growth occurred in 2012, when Angola had a population of 25,096,150.
Uganda is a landlocked nation bordered by the Democratic Republic of Congo, Rwanda, Kenya, Tanzania and South Sudan. In terms of population, Uganda is ranked 10th in Africa and 33rd in the world. Ugandans represent 0.57% of the global population. With a population of 41,487,965 in 2016, the country experienced a 3.35% growth rate in 2015. The country has experienced an average growth rate of 3.27% between 2010 and 2015.
The Gambia is a West African nation bordered by Senegal and the Atlantic Ocean. The Gambia is the smallest nation on the African mainland by size, and ranks 43rd in Africa by population. The Gambia has a population of 2,038,501 people, which represents approximately 0.03% of the global population. Although small in terms of size and population, Gambia had a growth rate of 3.24% growth between 2010 and 2015, making it the 7th fastest growing nation in Africa.
Factors Contributing to High Growth Rates
In most of African nations, the birth rate is relatively high compared to the mortality rate. Countries like Mali and Niger each had a birth rate of 46 births for every 1000 individuals in 2014, which contributed to their high growth rates. Another reason for high growth rates is lack of government birth control programs. In fact, only about 30% of women in Africa use contraception, but more claimed they would use contraceptives if they were available.