n Journal of African Foreign Affairs - The paradoxes of Africa's development : African Union's contributions to Africa's recent achievements, 2005-2014

Volume 1, Issue 2
  • ISSN : 2056-564X
  • E-ISSN: 2056-5658


This paper focuses on Africa's paradoxes pertaining to meeting its development goals. The paper claims that while one can present a number of examples showing serious challenges confronting countries on the continent in meeting their development goals, one can also present many examples of these same countries making important development achievements, especially in the past decade. For example, the paper shows that the average life expectancy in Africa in 2006 was 53.3 years; in 2014, it increased to 61 years. The average infant mortality rate in Africa in 2006 was 73.5 deaths per 1000; in 2014, it declined to 53 deaths per 1000. The average death rate in Africa in 2006 was 14.2 deaths per 1000; it declined to 9.6 deaths per 1000 in 2014. Africa's per capita Gross Domestic Product in 2008 was $2,660; it increased to $3,167 in 2013. The paper claims and presents examples illustrating that the African Union (AU) has contributed substantially to Africa's development achievements in the past decade and argues that if African nations were to give more of their sovereignty to the AU and make it a stronger federal union, it could do more to improve the lives of the vast majority of people on the continent.

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