A tale of two continents: fighting inequality in Africa

Africa sits at the confluence of two related and mutually reinforcing developmental challenges – poverty and inequality – the solutions for which are a matter of policy choice. Despite the recent spate of economic growth, the continent remains afflicted by entrenched poverty and alarmingly high and rising inequality. The gap between rich and poor is greater than in any other region of the world apart from Latin America, and in many African countries this gap continues to grow. In this context, the prospects of achieving the Sustainable Development Goals and Agenda 2063 are severely diminished. African political and business leaders face a clear choice. They can choose the path of ever-increasing inequality and poverty. Or they can choose another path, to a more prosperous, equal Africa built for the many, not the few, by promoting efficient and progressive tax systems, investing in free, quality and gender-responsive public services and social safety nets, and protecting the rights of workers to decent work and wages.

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