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More than 40% of jobs can be automated in 5 African countries (Report)  

  • Comments   -   Friday, 14 April 2017 - 14:43

(Ecofin Agency) - Should Africa be concerned automation? Well, according to a study conducted by the McKinsey consulting firm published in the Harvard Business Review, between 41% and 51.9% of professional activities could be automated in five of the continent’s largest economies namely Kenya, Morocco, Nigeria, Egypt and South Africa.

The study which overviews 46 nations, worldwide, gathering 80% of the globe’s workforce, states that automation and artificial intelligence (AI) could replace 1.2 billion full-time jobs which represent a mass salary of $14.6 trillion. China, India, Japan and the U.S. alone regroup half of this mass salary and two-third of the jobs that might be automated. With 700 million workers, China and India might feel the impact most in case the revolution takes place.

While automation could contribute to a 0.8%-1.4% increase in annual growth rate, its impact on the major economies of the world will, by 2065, be the same as if 1.1 to 2.2 billion full-time jobs were added to the global labor force.

Automation will help developed economies maintain their actual living standards as it will counter the aging population and low birth rate issue which these countries currently record. In emerging nations, it will boost contribution in addition to solving the aging population issue. As for emerging countries with young populations, which include African countries mentioned in the study, automation will improve their living conditions as well production.

However, the study states that the revolution will not take place without challenges. Its concretization will depend on various politics, access to technology as it is not always less costly than human labor in some countries. Moreover, some might not well perceive the change.

Ranking of African countries by proportions of jobs that may be automated regarding to actually available technologies.

Kenya: 51.9%

Morocco: 50.5%

Egypt: 48.7%

Nigeria: 45.7%

South Africa: 41%

Aaron Akinocho

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