नवम्बर 10, 2020
लेखक WID.world

What’s New About Income Inequality in Africa?

What’s New About Income Inequality in Africa?

In this issue brief, Anne-Sophie Robilliard provides insights into the magnitude and evolution of income inequality in Africa and across African countries using the most recent data available on WID.world. The author finds that South Africa is the most unequal country in the Africa region; in 2019, the income share of the top 10% of households is estimated at 65%.


>> Click here to see the data

Key Results

  • Inequality levels in the African region are extremely high, with average country-level top 10% income shares estimated at half the national income.
  • Extreme inequality countries can be found among nations that historically experienced white settlers’ colonization and extreme forms of racial injustices: in South Africa, the top 10% captures 65% of the national income.
  • Inequality levels seem to have changed very little on average over the last decades, but contrasted dynamics are observed at the sub-regional level. These dynamics remain to be investigated.

Figure –  Income Inequality in Africa

This figure shows the average national income share accruing to the top 10% per sub-region (average of country levels).

Inequality in Africa



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The author gratefully acknowledges funding from the European Research Council (ERC Grant 856455) from the French National Research Agency (EUR Grant ANR-17-EURE-0001), as well as from the United Nations Development Program (Project 00093806).

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