United Nations Development Programme


UNDP in Africa


Director's Corner

Follow UNDP in Africa on:

Topics and Special Initiatives


featured content


African Economic Conference 2013: Call for Papers, Submissions June 24-August 30


MDG 2013

Country Offices

UNDP in Africa


Helen Clark & The Power of Persistence



23 August - Helen Clark on becoming an influential figure, building credibility as a woman in high places and the value of soft power in leadership. Full Story



Over the last ten years, Sub-Saharan Africa has shown strong levels of economic growth. Having weathered the global economic crisis, it is estimated that Sub-Saharan African economies grew by more than five percent in 2011. Projections show that the continent as a whole is expected to grow by 4.5 percent in 2012 and 4.8 percent in 2013.


In the past ten years, capitalizing on this continuing trend, African countries became among the fastest movers on UNDP’s Human Development Index.


Africa has also made steady progress on a number of Millennium Development Goals (MDGs), as exemplified by an increase in primary school enrolment rates, higher numbers of women in parliament and non-agricultural wage employment and a drop in HIV/AIDS prevalence rates.


Still, with high remaining levels of poverty and unemployment, particularly among young people, the most important test for Africa will be to facilitate growth that centers around people, creating well-being and opportunities for all Africans.


In addition, the region’s efforts to achieve the MDGs will continue to be met with persisting or emerging challenges, including economic volatility, political upheavals and violence, demographic pressure and climate change.

UNDP on the ground

UNDP supports Africa so it can achieve growth that centers around people,  helping countries to strengthen the private sector, expand social protection, create jobs for the poorest, and bolster food security for all. UNDP focuses on women’s empowerment not only from a human rights perspective, but also because empowering women is a pathway to achieving the Millennium Development Goals (MDGs).


Secondly, UNDP helps African societies to become more resilient, by working to prevent conflicts, build peace and pave the way for long-term recovery, ensuring development progress is preserved and built upon. We also help to minimize the impact of natural and climate-related disasters, collaborating with countries so they can both prevent human and physical losses and recover from them.


Thirdly, UNDP works to ensure sustainability, encouraging countries to adopt a development process that is less carbon-dependent, better suited for Africa and that uses the vast natural wealth of the continent in a way that is economically, socially and environmentally sound.

Africa News