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Despite the growing number of women and youth entrepreneurs in Africa, they continue to face significant challenges that hinder their growth and success. A report by the African Development Bank in November 2023 highlighted some of the key barriers:Limited access to finance due to lack of collateral, credit history, and gender biasInadequate business skills and entrepreneurial training Lack of mentorship and networking opportunitiesSociocultural norms and gender stereotypes that limit women's participation in businessInsufficient access to markets and technologySuccess Stories: Women and Youth Entrepreneurs Making an ImpactDespite the challenges, there are numerous inspiring stories of women
In January 2024, the Secretary-General of the AfCFTA announced that 24 new countries will join the seven already participating in the Guided Trade Initiative, the pilot phase of the free-trade project that began in October 2022. This expansion aims to boost intra-regional trade and act as a catalyst for industrialization and economic growth in Africa.The World Bank estimates that the AfCFTA could increase the continent's real income by up to 9% by 2035 if all policies under consideration regarding investment, e-commerce, and intellectual property are adopted. The free-trade agreement is also expected to make Africa more resilient to external shocks by increasing intra-regional trade and attr
Africa is on the cusp of an e-commerce boom, with the number of online shoppers projected to surpass 500 million by 2025, representing a steady 17% compound annual growth rate.This rapid adoption of digital commerce is being driven by increasing internet penetration, the ubiquity of mobile phones, and a young, tech-savvy population eager to embrace online shopping.Africa leads the world in mobile internet usage, with 69% of its web traffic coming from mobile devices in 2021 - 13% higher than the global average. This mobile-first environment is shaping the trajectory of e-commerce on the continent. Entrepreneurs are leveraging social media platforms like Facebook, Instagram and WhatsApp to re
The food security situation in Africa deteriorated significantly in 2021, with the continent having the highest prevalence of food insecurity globally. An estimated 322 million Africans faced severe food insecurity in 2021 - 21.5 million more than in 2020. The largest increases occurred in sub-Saharan Africa, particularly in Middle Africa. Northern Africa also saw a concerning rise in food insecurity levels from 2020 to 2021.Key drivers include climate shocks, conflict, economic downturns, and rising costs of food. The ongoing war in Ukraine has exacerbated the crisis by disrupting grain exports to Africa. With food prices remaining high, access to adequate food is increasingly out of reach