The world's population expands in sub-Saharan Africa
( Updated: 09/13/2013 )
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Africa's population is predicted to double by mid-century, with sub-Saharan countries having the highest fertility rates. Niger, Zambia, and Mali top the list in that order. People queue to vote during Mali's presidential election in Timbuktu, Mali, July 28, 2013. Joe Penney/Reuters
Seven of the 10 countries with the highest fertility rates also appear among the bottom 10 on the United Nations' Human Development Index. In Somalia, an internally displaced Somali girl carries a jerry-can of water as she walks through their makeshift shelters at Sayyidka camp in the Howlwadag district, south of Somalia's capital Mogadishu, May 3, 2013. Omar Faruk/Reuters
There is a growing belief that Africa – home to 53 countries, a rapidly urbanized young population of a billion people and as much as a third of the world's natural resources – is changing for the better. Konkola Copper Mines PLC workers wait in a lift before going to work underground in Konkola, Zambia, 2005. Reuters
In Niger, which has the world's fastest population growth rate, women give birth to an average of 7.6 children. People walk along Kennedy Bridge in Niamey, capital city of Niger, 2011. Luc Gnago/Reuters
International aid agencies are increasingly focusing efforts in Africa on family planning. A Maasai tribeswoman carries her baby on her back at a village on the outskirts of Serengeti, northern Tanzania, Aug. 12, 2013. Nariman El-Mofty/AP
While the population is growing rapidly, Africa is also home to seven of the world's fastest growing economies. In Ruyigi, Burundi, students wait for class to resume after recess in 2006. Melanie Stetson Freeman/Staff
The continent's rapid growth will increase pressure to deliver vital services in education, development and jobs according to Julia Schünemann, director of the Africa Futures Project at the Institute for Security Studies in South Africa. Performers filled the streets of Lagos' islands as part of the Lagos Carnival, a major festival in Nigeria's largest city during Easter weekend, April 1, 2013. Sunday Alamba/AP
If population growth keeps pace with development rather than outstripping it, these new economies will likely provide greater opportunities. Villagers walk towards a Sunday market near the eastern Chadian town of Gos Beida, 2008. Finbarr O'Reilly/Reuters
A Congolese girl, displaced by recent fighting in North Kivu, attends a class session at the child friendly space (CFS) within Mugunga III camp for internally displaced people near Goma, eastern Democratic Republic of Congo, August 7, 2013. Thomas Mukoya/Reuters
Residents queue up for sugar at a supermarket in the Malawian capital of Lilongwe, 2012. Jon Herskovitz/Reuters
The southern African democracy is widely viewed as a post-colonial success story. But as Botswana’s citizens freely cast their votes in today’s presidential election, critics warn incumbent Khama has a darker side.
Jacoline Prinsloo/Government Communication and Information System/Reuters
When the presidential helicopter touched down in a cloud of dust near this sun-baked village in central Botswana for a campaign rally Wednesday, the man who stepped out from the pilot’s seat was none other than the president himself, Ian Khama.