L’intégration régionale peut-elle sauver l’Afrique ?

Au cours des vingt-cinq dernières années, la croissance économique mondiale s’est envolée. Pourtant, l’Afrique est toujours en perte de vitesse. Entre 1980 et 2000, la part du continent dans les exportations mondiales est passée de 4,6 % à 1,8 %, et sa part dans les importations de 3,6 % à 1,6 %.

La part de l’Afrique dans les flux mondiaux d’investissements étrangers directs (IED) a également chuté, de 1,8 % pour la période 1986-90 à 0,8 % pour la période 1999-2000. Les associations économiques régionales, comme le Marché commun d’Afrique orientale et australe (COMESA) et la Communauté pour le développement de l’Afrique australe (CDAA), peuvent-elles encourager le commerce et la croissance ?

Les flux commerciaux en Afrique australe sont passés de 131,1 milliards de dollars en 2002 à 112,3 milliards de dollars en 2003. L’Afrique du Sud – l’un des trois seuls pays de la région ayant enregistré un excédent de la balance courante – représentait 65 % du total. Si le commerce extérieur de l’Afrique du Sud a pratiquement doublé entre 1994 et 2002, les exportations du Malawi vers la Tanzanie ou du Mozambique vers la Zambie sont restées négligeables, en dépit de la proximité géographique.

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