The Poorest Countries In Africa Update

Oasdom the poorest country in Africa today
Oasdom the poorest country in Africa today

Which is the poorest country in Africa?

Africa is one of the richest continents in the world with favorable weather, land-soil, and minerals.

However, this is a different story for some of countries in Africa because majority of the poorest countries in the world are located in this great continent.


Why is Africa so rich but so poor? There is a misunderstanding at the heart of this question about what causes the poverty.

We bring you the name of the poorest countries in Africa based on the Gross domestic Product, literacy rate and employment rate, since they are some of the parameters to determine the level of poverty of a country.

List of The Top 10 Poorest Countries In Africa

Now, which are the poorest countries in the world?  Why don’t you stop guessing? Just keep on reading to find out the answer as we present some of the poorest countries in Africa and the status of their economies.

Poverty is everyone’s enemy because it is degrading and humiliating. How then can a continent with all these resources be conquered by its enemy.

Here is a detailed list of the 10 poorest country in Africa

1 South Sudan

South Sudan third poorest countries in Africa
Image by: Human Rights Watch
  • GDP per capita: $237.44 Country name: Republic of south Sudan
  • Region: Central African
  • Colonized: Sudan
  • Source of revenue: Export of crude oil

The economy of South Sudan is one of the world’s weakest and most underdeveloped, having little existing infrastructure and the highest maternal mortality and female illiteracy rates in the world as of 2011.

South Sudan is one of the poorest countries in the world, has a 27 percent literacy rate and is so underdeveloped that it has only about 35 miles of paved road. Its economy is driven by oil exports.

2. Burundi

Burundi - Poorest country in Africa continent

  • GDP per Capita: $292.01
  • Full country name: Republic of Burundi
  • Region: Central Eastern Africa
  • Colonized: Germany
  • Sources of revenue: well known for exportation tea, sugar, coffee and hide

Burundi is both landlocked and resource poor with an underdeveloped manufacturing sector which makes it very difficult to survive, thus making the country heavily dependent on foreign aid.

Burundi has a fast-growing population and little land. More than 68% of the Burundian population lives below the poverty line that is why the country has been on the map of the poorest countries in Africa.

You can’t talk about the poorest countries in Africa without asking which is the richest country in the world, Africa is just one continent isn’t it? 

3. Malawi

Top ten poorest african countries - Malawi

  • GDP $33.4
  • Full country name: Republic of Malawi
  • Region: South Eastern Africa
  • Colonized: Britain
  • Source of revenue; Agriculture

Malawi is a country in the South Eastern part of Africa is the third poorest countries in Africa It has one of the lowest per capital incomes in the world with more than half of the citizens living below the poverty line.

The country mostly relies on Tobacco exports for its foreign exchange [half of the country’s exports are just raw tobacco]. The country is small, landlocked, has few natural resources, is densely populated but largely agricultural.

4. Niger

republic of Niger - Poor country in africa

  • GDP per capita: $378.06
  • Full country name: Republic of Niger
  • Region: West African
  • Colonized by: British                            
  • Sources of revenue: subsistence crops and livestock.

Niger is located in West Africa, this country is one  of the poorest countries in Africa. Its GDP per capita is about 440 U.S dollars.

The country exports its agricultural products to other underdeveloped countries on the continent and this is the reason why its economy does not grow much.

Niger has oil reserves, but corruption and other internal problems have also led to significant economic issues.

Despite the fact that the country has some of the world’s largest uranium deposits, Niger is one of the poorest countries in the world, a landlocked Sub-Saharan nation, whose economy centers on subsistence crops and livestock.

5. The Central African Republic

Central African Republic - Poverty in the world

  • Full country name: The Central African Republic
  • GDP per capita: $418.41
  • Region: Central Africa                    
  • Colonized: France and Germany
  • Sources of revenue: export of timber, coffee etc.

The Central African Republic possess significant natural resources – the deposits of diamonds, uranium, gold, and oil.

However, because of the never-ending internal conflicts, it remains one of the poorest countries in the world. One of the major problems for people in Central Africa is drinking water.

Water is so dirty in Central African Republic, and not everyone has access to it. Another problem in the country is the difficulty of obtaining medical care.

Hospitals are not situated in every town, and you still need to get to them. Besides, there are no roads or streets in the country.

6. Dr congo

Republic of Congo

  • Country name: Democratic Republic of the Congo
  • Region: central Africa
  • Colonized: Belgium
  • Source of revenue: Agriculture

The Democratic Republic of Congo is potentially one of the richest countries in Africa, but colonialism, slavery and corruption have turned it into one of the poorest countries in Africa.

This is so due to lack of functionary and potential leaders who have turned the country’s chances of recognition among the giant and one of the richest countries in Africa fruitless 

7. Somalia

is somalia the poorest country in the world today

  • GDP per capita: $478.34 Full country name: Federal republic of Somalia
  • Region: Horn of Africa
  • Colonized: Britain and France
  • Source of revenue: Somalia’s economy relies largely on agriculture; staples include bananas, rice, sorghum, and livestock.
  • Source of revenue: Agriculture

Somalia has never been tired of making the list of poorest countries in Africa.  Somalia is one of the poorest countries in sub-Saharan Africa, with the GDP per capita of $478.34.

Its economy cannot develop and grow because it fully depends on internationalization remittances, livestock, and telecommunications.

Severe droughts and extreme weather make life for people living in poverty in Somalia even more difficult.

Due to famine, wars, and droughts, Somalia largely depends on food aid to survive. Most people reside in refugee camps. What is left in this country is little infrastructure to talk about.

8. Liberia

Liberia - poorest country in Africa

  • County name: Republic of Liberia
  • Region: West Africa
  • Colonized: American
  • GDP per capita: $694.32
  • Sources of revenue: agriculture (subsistence farming)

With a GDP per capita of $694.32, Liberia depends mostly on mineral resources and agriculture.

The nation relies heavily on the exportation of minerals which includes  iron ore and rubber to increase the GDP level.

Previously the economic standard of Liberia were sustainable, but as a result of civil war, the economy has been crippled with poor infrastructure, political unrest and lack of capital resources.

The Liberian government is putting more effort towards implementing modern technology in enhancing the agricultural sector to revive the economy.

The current economic instability in Liberia has brought the country on the list of the poorest countries in Africa

9. The Gambia

  • GDP per capita: $709.01
  • Full country name: Republic if the Gambia
  • Region: West Africa
  • Colonized: Great Britain
  • Source of revenue: depend heavily on exportation of peanut, fish, cotton and palm kernel

The root problems are the overall lack of economic diversity as well as inadequate agricultural proficiency and productivity.

The Gambia mainly depends on its livestock because its natural resources such as minerals are not sufficient, that is why Gambia can be regarded as a poor country in Africa.

10. Madagascar


  • Country name: Republic of Madagascar
  • Region: Southern Africa
  • Colonized: It was colonized by the French
  • GDP per capita: $10,721.61
  • Sources of revenue: Agriculture

Madagascar is not just one of the world’s poorest countries, but one of the world’s poorest countries today.

Madagascar has about 44 percent of its population living in poverty. However, the main causes of poverty in Madagascar are brought on by the effects of its economy revolving around agriculture.

Madagascar, even with it having one of the fastest growing economies in Africa, it still remains one of the poorest countries of the continent.

Poorest Countries in Africa (Summary)

The aforementioned are the list of the poorest countries in Africa. High rates of poverty is experienced in most parts of these countries.

As you can see, most of these poor countries have the lowest GDP While some of the richer countries in Africa complain about minimum wages and the likes.

These poor African countries are often characterized with low rates of unemployment and lack of access to basic human needs.

With the interference of the Africa Union and their ability to make ways foreign investors, poverty in these countries is something that can be done with.

When asked which is the poorest country in Africa, I’m sure you’ll have a thing or to to say, isn’t it?

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