West African Perspectives

Resources for Development

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West African Perspectives: Resources for Development conducts a cross-cutting analysis of the main development challenges in the region and offers suggestions on how to meet them. It provides an overview of West Africa’s abundant resources , examining not only economic and natural resources but also human, social and cultural capital. Finally, it presents the perspectives of six prominent West Africans involved in the development of their region.

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Sahel and West Africa Club

The West African area includes 18 countries, covers 7.9 million km² and had a population of almost 315 million in 2007. The region has been shaped by its long history and has been influenced in turn by the large pre-colonial kingdoms and empires, the slave trade, colonisation and independence. Its great geographical diversity is due to varied ecological and climatic conditions, from the Saharan north to the equatorial south.With a GDP estimated at 225 billion US dollars, it remains one of the poorest regions in the world: 13 of its 18 countries rank among the Least Developed Countries (LDCs).

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