Fast economic development in the Middle East and Africa region is unlocking high levels of unmet potential and resulting in diminishing regional disparities and rapid growth in consumer incomes. Nevertheless, income inequality is set to increase in most of the countries, and the lowest-income class is set to remain the fastest-growing income segment. The short-term outlook is also clouded by rising energy and food prices, inducing malnutrition among the most vulnerable populations.
This report comes in PPT.
Total disposable income in Middle East and Africa is set to almost double by 2040, driven by economic diversification efforts within oil-dependent countries, as well as rising agricultural productivity and a shift towards higher-value-added sectors in sub-Saharan Africa. Nevertheless, the short-term outlook remains clouded by rising inflation and the tightening of global financing conditions, constraining discretionary spending and exacerbating food insecurity, especially in the Horn of Africa.
Due to prevalent poverty, expenditure on essentials is set to account for more than 60% of the total consumer basket in 2040. The lowest-income class (social class E) is expanding in 17 out of 20 regional countries, with half of the population living on less than USD5,000 per year in 13 out of 20 countries.
Huge disparities between male and female per capita incomes are set to prevail through to 2040, resulting from low workforce enrolment rates among females, especially in Middle East and North Africa (MENA). However, the governments are expected to continue with the implementation of economic diversification reforms, increasing opportunities for female empowerment.
The consumer segment aged 60+ years is expected to record the steepest average gross income growth over the forecast period, in line with the global trend towards ageing wealth. Accumulated wealth and improving social protection stand among the major income growth drivers. The number of silver consumers is set to continue growing rapidly through to 2040, supporting demand for healthcare products and services, as well as leisure activities tailored for seniors.
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