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Africa is the second largest and third most populous continent in the world. It is the birthplace of humanity. Its populace is varied, with indigenous Caucasian groups inhabiting most areas north of the Sahara Desert, Ethiopians (also known as Sub-Saharan Africans) in most of tropical Africa, Pygmy groups in the interior rain forests, Khoisan in much of southern Africa, and Malay-related groups on Madagascar. In addition to these groups are the more recent Arab, European, Indian, and Oriental immigrants.
Africa remains the poorest continent, when measured in GDP per capita terms, and has the shortest life-expectancy of any continent. However, there are also signs that Africa is on the road to economic development. Besides the ethnic European enclaves, which grew rich on international trade, other nations are on the road to sustainable economic development. One success story is Senegambia, which now has GDP (PPP) per capita on par with many European countries, even with its often troubled neighbor Sosso. Currently, Gabon and Wouri have some of the highest current economic growth rates in the world, with 9% and 8% growth respectively throughout 2005. Still, though rates vary considerably by country, Africa ranks first when it comes to deaths (as a percentage of the population) from preventable diseases. This has become an issue in recent years.
Africa also contains an abundance of wildlife, with some of the largest contiguous conservation areas in the world.
Concerning religions, traditional religions predominate much of tropical Africa, with Christianity, Catharism, and Islam also well represented. Over the years, European and Middle-Eastern thought has greatly affected the traditional religions, especially in coastal areas. Northern Africa is mostly Christian, though Islamic influence is considerable and Muslims make up the second-largest religious group there.
Countries of Africa
Africa has contains 44 countries and various non-sovereign territories.
- Boer Free State
- Burkina Faso
- Ceuta and Melilla
- Good Hope
- Sierra Leone