Challenges of Economic Growth, Poverty and Development: Why Are the Millennium Development Goals (MDGs) not Fair to Sub-Saharan Africa?

Kanayo Ogujiuba, Fadila Jumare

Abstract


Sub-Saharan African countries report high levels of growth and GDP per capita and yet they are unable to achieve the Millennium Development Goals (MDGs) such as quality education and health. The paper argued that GDP might not be sufficient for measuring development because the funds obtained may not necessarily be used to improve the quality of life of worse off communities. Even with a constituent level of GDP, the problem of poverty and underdevelopment is becoming more intractable in Sub-Saharan Africa. This paper focused on the Challenges facing Sub-Saharan African countries in achieving the Millennium Development Goals (MDGs). This was discussed after revealing growth in GDP and inequality trends in Sub-Saharan Africa. Using examples from countries like Nigeria, it is evident that many countries in Sub-Saharan Africa are unlikely to achieve their MDG targets due to persistence of poverty and other challenges such as corruption and mal-administration of funds. Moreover, the required growth to substantially reduce poverty is too high by international standards. The paper concluded by concurring with the view that redistribution of the growth increment of income is more likely to be effective in reducing poverty than growth in GDP alone. Therefore while growth in GDP may be prone to poverty reduction, it should be complemented with policies to ensure investment and broad participation, reduce violence, root out corruption and increase investment in infrastructure. The paper recommends that countries’ development strategies must take into consideration national realities in each country rather than adopting targets and policies from the western world.


Full Text: PDF DOI: 10.5539/jsd.v5n12p52



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Journal of Sustainable Development   ISSN 1913-9063 (Print)   ISSN 1913-9071 (Online)

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