The COVID-19 pandemic has impacted 2020’s growth around the world, with global growth projected (in October) to be –4.4% in 2020 –based on IMF data for 194 countries.
Out of the sixteen economies in the trillion-dollar club, only China’s GDP is projected to grow in 2020, the data shows.
Let’s take a look at the five fastest growing economies in terms of growth percentage in 2020 as projected in October. These 5 countries including China, are located in the Tropic of Cancer belt. These nations have also been hit by the pandemic to a lesser degree compared with some of the biggest economies and advanced nations up north.
Guyana: Is projected to be among the world’s largest per capita oil producers by 2025. With a projected 26.21% growth in 2020, Guyana is the fastest growing economy in the world. Guyana’s growth is expected to come in at 12% in 2021; 49% in 2022; 28% in 2023. Guyana is a middle-income country and is covered by dense forests, and is home to fertile agricultural lands and abundant natural resources. Gold, bauxite, sugar, rice, timber, and shrimp are among its leading exports.
In 2000, the U.S. Geological Survey identified the Guyana-Suriname Basin as the second highest resource potential among unexplored oil basins in the world. Several companies have been involved with exploration and drilling activities over the years, including ExxonMobil, Esso, Hess to name a few.
South Sudan: Gained independence in 2011. The country was hit hard by a civil war and falling oil prices since December 2013. However, the peace agreement signed in September 2018 has rekindled hope for peace and economic recovery, along with the reopening of some damaged oil wells, which are its main source of revenue. The economy is poised to grow by 4.11% in 2020 with its GDP at $4.18 billion (Rank: 156) –it is expected to shrink by 2.27% in 2021 and is expected to witness growth of close to 1% in 2022 before picking up the pace by 2.98%, 5.49%, and 5.42% in 2023, 2024, and 2025.
Bangladesh: The South Asian country has emerged as a strong economic growth story. The World Bank estimates that Bangladesh will become a middle-income economy by 2021. It has experienced an average growth of 7.6% in the past four years (2016-20) and is set to grow at 3.8% during 2020. According to the Asian Development Bank (September 2020 Outlook), Bangladesh is expected to grow at 5.2% and 6.8% in 2020 and 2021, respectively. It is expected to see an average growth of 7.46% during 2022-25. Bangladesh was an $8.75 billion economy at the time of its independence. Its GDP for 2020 is estimated at $317.44 billion (Rank: 41) and should be around $490 billion by 2025.
Egypt: In September 2020, Eni (E) and BP (BP) announced a new gas discovery in the so-called “Great Nooros Area,” located in the Abu Madi West Development Lease, in the conventional waters of the Nile Delta offshore Egypt. During 2018 and 2019, its economy grew at 5.31% and 5.56%, respectively. Despite the impact on its economy by the sudden stop in tourism, fall in exports, drop in remittances, and lower revenue from the Suez Canal, Egypt will manage a growth rate of 3.55% during 2020. Its economy will expand at 2.76% next year before returning to a higher growth of an average 5.28% over the four-year period 2022-25. Its GDP for 2020 is projected at $361.88 billion (Rank: 34).
Benin: The economy is expected to grow at 2% during 2020 to $15.29 billion (Rank: 120). The economy is projected to clock 5% growth in 2021, followed by an average growth of 7% during 2022-25. The African Development Bank Group highlights that Benin remains highly exposed to changes in the trade and currency policies of Nigeria—Benin’s leading trading partner and the recipient of 51% of its exports.
The rankings are based on IMF data for growth rate released in October 2020. The growth rate is the annual percentages of constant price GDP on year-on-year changes; the base year is country-specific.
The original article appeared in October in nasdaq.com.