Poorest Countries in Africa 2022

Africa is the world’s most impoverished continent. Because of this, the competition isn’t very fierce. Millions of Africans live in abject poverty due to political and economic instability, corruption, civil wars, and terrorist insurrections.




Twenty-three of the world’s 27 low-income economies, which the World Bank classifies as the world’s poorest nations, are found in Africa. Africa is home to 21 of the world’s 55 nations with a GDP per capita below the middle-class level.

As an indicator of a country’s wealth, GDP and GNI per capita is often used to calculate GDP per capita and GNI per capita. When calculating GDP per capita, a country’s entire output of goods and services is divided by its population.

International income, such as investments or commercial activities abroad, is included in GNI per capita.

When comparing countries, GDP and GNI are sometimes stated in “international dollars,” a fictitious currency based on purchasing power parity (PPP). A country’s wealth or poverty may be gauged by comparing its GDP per capita to the GDP per capita of its neighbors.

The following are Africa’s ten poorest countries, as of 2020, in terms of GDP per capita, purchasing power parity (PPP), and current international dollars: *




  1. Burundi ($771)
  2. Somalia ($875)
  3. Central African Republic ($980)
  4. The Democratic Republic of the Congo ($1,131)
  5. Niger ($1,263)
  6. Mozambique ($1,297)
  7. Liberia ($1,428)
  8. Malawi ($1,568)
  9. Madagascar ($1,593)
  10. Chad ($1,603)

*For comparison: United States ($63,544)

Using the Atlas approach, the following are the 10 poorest countries in Africa as of the year 2020:

  1. Burundi ($270)
  2. Somalia ($310)
  3. Mozambique ($460)
  4. Madagascar ($480)
  5. Sierra Leone ($490)
  6. Central African Republic ($510)
  7. Liberia ($530)
  8. Niger ($540)
  9. The Democratic Republic of the Congo ($550)
  10. Malawi ($580)




**For comparison: United States 2019 ($65,910)

Burundi is the world’s poorest nation, according to projected GDP and GNI per capita estimates for 2020. Somalia, the second-worst nation in Africa, also shares this distinction.

This is a recurring theme across the whole list. The ten poorest nations in Africa are also the ten poorest countries globally, except Afghanistan, an Asian country with a GNI per capita of $500.

It is plausible that other non-African countries—especially North Korea, Syria, and Yemen—would fall into the bottom 10 if they were willing to freely publish their GDP/GNI figures, but they often refuse to do so. This is a big caveat. However, the bulk of the nations on the list would still be from Africa.

When looking at the figures alone, it may be difficult to appreciate the magnitude of Africa’s economic issues. To put things in perspective, consider the GDP levels of the world’s richest nations.

Luxembourg has a GDP per capita (PPP int.$) of $118,356, which is more than 150 times larger than Burundi’s $771, according to 2020 estimates. It’s hard to believe that Norway will have a GDP in 2020 289 times more than Burundi’s, based on the




Atlas approach and current US dollars. The economic condition in Africa may improve in the future. Over the last two decades, a few African nations have seen tremendous economic growth and development.

If this development can be maintained and developed, many Africans might benefit from a more optimistic economic future. See the table below for a complete list of African nations and their 2020 GNI per capita (Atlas method, current US$)

Also See: Poorest Asian Countries 2022

The following is a list of the 10 poorest African countries:

  1. Burundi ($270)
  2. Somalia ($310)
  3. Mozambique ($460)
  4. Madagascar ($480)
  5. Sierra Leone ($490)
  6. Eritrea ($510)
  7. Central African Republic ($510)
  8. Liberia ($530)
  9. Niger ($540)
  10. DR Congo ($550)




CountryGNI per Capita (Atlas Method, $US)GNI per Capita, PPP ($int'l.)Data Year
Area2022 Population
Burundi27078020202783412624.8400
Somalia310870202063765716841.7950
Mozambique4601250202080159033089.4610
Madagascar4801540202058704129178.0770
Sierra Leone49016702020717408306.4360
Eritrea510161020101176003662.2440
Central African Republic510104020206229845016.6780
Liberia530125020201113695305.1170
Niger54012102020126700026083.6600
DR Congo55011002020234485895240.7920
Malawi5801540202011848420180.8390
Sudan65039702020188606845992.0200
Chad66015802020128400017413.5800
Gambia75022402020106892558.4820
Guinea-Bissau76019802020361252063.3670
Rwanda780216020202633813600.4640
Burkina Faso7902190202027296722102.8380
Uganda8002260202024155048432.8630
Mali83022502020124019221473.7640
Ethiopia890241020201104300120812.6980
Togo92022302020567858680.8370
Guinea10202580202024585713865.6910
Tanzania10802760202094508763298.5500
South Sudan10901080201561974511618.5110
Zimbabwe10902850202039075715331.4280
Lesotho110027402020303552175.6990
Zambia11903360202075261219470.2340
Benin12803470202011262212784.7260
Senegal14303400202019672217653.6710
Comoros1450333020201862907.4190
Cameroon15003720202047544227911.5480
Mauritania16405240202010307004901.9810
Kenya17604370202058036756215.2210
Republic of the Congo1830311020203420005797.8050
Nigeria200050002020923768216746.9340
Sao Tome and Principe207042602020964227.6790
Ghana22305470202023853332395.4500
Angola223060202020124670035027.3430
Ivory Coast22805300202032246327742.2980
Morocco29807190202044655037772.7560
Egypt30001221020201002450106156.6920
Tunisia31009990202016361012046.6560
Djibouti332056202020232001016.0970
Algeria3550110102020238174145350.1480
Eswatini358083802020173641184.8170
Namibia4520922020208256152633.8740
Libya485011250202017595407040.7450
South Africa5410118702020122103760756.1350
Equatorial Guinea5810133502020280511496.6620
Botswana66401557020205820002441.1620
Gabon69701413020202676682331.5330
Mauritius1023022390202020401274.7270
Seychelles1272024310202045299.4260




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