Cost of Conflict - Thematic Cost of Conflict Reports - Africa's Missing Billions

Africa's Missing Billions

A report conducted by 3 international organizations in 2007 highlighted the heavy cost to development in Africa, due to ensuing conflicts in various countries. The report conducted by Oxfam International, the International Action Network on Small Arms and Saferworld stated that 23 African countries were involved in one form of conflict or another between 1990 and 2005.

During these 15 years the cost of conflict in Africa was equivalent to the funds granted to the continent in international aid over the same period – both conflicts and aid from 1990-2005 amounted to $284 billion. In other words, the money lost in conflict could have been used in more effective ways, such as addressing the needs of education, clean water and sanitation and the prevention of harmful disease in African countries.

Other facts included in the report: On average, armed conflict shrinks an African nation's economy by 15 percent. Conflicts are costing African economies an average of $18bn a year. Conflicts in countries like Burundi and Rwanda have cost their governments an annual economic loss of 37% and 32% of their GDP respectively.

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