Once maligned as land mired in poverty, the richest cities in Africa are becoming beacons of hope, and evidence of the inherent potential that is hidden away in the continent. Africa’s most vibrant cities can even rival some cities in Europe and America, while out-performing many cities in Asia. These are the cities that spearhead Africa’s drive towards economic prosperity and infrastructural development.
The relationship between the people and the businesses must be balanced; entrepreneurs and businesses need the population to be profitable, while the populations need jobs in order to remain sustainable. This balance is what keeps cities prosperous and rich; the true indication of wealth being that which is owned by the people themselves.
The wealthiest cities in Africa thus provide the biggest opportunities for investment and capital appreciation that are available on the continent; these are the places where money is spent-the biggest hubs for buying and selling on the continent.
Top 10 Richest Cities In Africa
Johannesburg, which the locals colloquially refer to as Joburg, is officially the richest city in South Africa because it is unrivaled on the continent with an estimated wealth of $248 billion. This is a major financial hub in the world, and important for a lot of reasons including Fashion, Tourism, Art, Minerals including Diamonds and Gold, as well as Education.
Johannesburg has some of the most valuable real estate in the continent, and some of the biggest banks in Africa are domiciled here. The city has a local population of 5.635 million people, and receives more than 5 million annual visitors in addition. Johannesburg is home to 2 dollar billionaires and about 16000 millionaires.
Jozi, Jo’burg, and eGoli are some other names by which this beautiful city is called. It is one of the 50 largest urban areas in the world. Johannesburg is also one of the most beautiful urban areas in Africa. It is therefore not surprising that this city features on this list as well. The city is the provincial capital and the largest city in Gauteng which is unsurprisingly is the wealthiest province in South Africa.
Joburg is not one of the three capital cities of South Africa but it is the seat of the Constitutional Court. Johannesburg is situated in the mineral-rich Witwatersrand hill range and is the center of large-scale commercial gold and diamond trades. This accounts for the high volume of wealth held in the city. The total wealth held in the city is estimated to be about US$276 billion. Major economic sectors in this beautiful city of wealth include financial services (banks, accountancies, insurance), professional services (law firms), construction, telecoms, and basic materials. The city is home to an impressive 18,200 millionaires (HNWIs), 970 multi-millionaires, and 2 billionaires.
2. Cape Town
Cape Town is the legislative capital of South Africa and is also one of the top wealthiest places on the continent with a total wealth of $133 billion. Cape Town is a hub for finance, manufacturing, government establishments, education, and the services industry. Cape Town has a population of more than 3.5 million. At least one billionaire lives in Cape Town, and there are several millionaires here too.
As far as the list of richest cities in Africa is concerned, after Johannesburg comes Cape Town – another South African city. Cape Town, with a total wealth that is estimated to be $155 billion, attracts a lot of tourists each year that expands its wealth base.
Cape Town has the honor of being named the most beautiful city on the African continent. The city isn’t just beautiful, it holds enormous wealth as well. It is also one of the three capitals of South Africa. It is the home of the country’s legislature. It should also be added that there are about 8,200 millionaires, 440 multi-millionaires, and 2 billionaires living in the city of Cape Town. Other sectors pumping wealth into Cape Town include real estate, financial services, retail, and so on.
Cairo is the capital city of Egypt. Traditionally, this is one of the wealthiest cities in Africa, and one of the richest in the whole world. With a total wealth of $129 billion, Cairo is an important city for lots of reasons; the government establishments, the tourism industry, manufacturing, food processing, sports, and fabrics. Cairo is also an important trading post; ships come in to discharge goods that are destined for inland countries.
Cairo accounts for 22% of Egypt’s economy and is home to 5 billionaires; the most you would find in Africa. It is actually a huge and large city that has its own share of issues too (such as the high level of unemployment). Nevertheless, with a total wealth that is as huge as $140 billion, Cairo is one of the richest cities in Africa.
The city is associated with ancient Egypt as the world-famous Giza pyramid complex as well as the ancient city of Memphis is located in the present geographical area called Cairo. The city is located very close to the Nile Delta. The site remains the site of ancient Egyptian capitals as remnants of those capitals can be found in parts of Old Cairo while the modern Cairo was founded in the year 969 CE by the Fatimid dynasty.
Cairo is a historical city that dates back thousands of years. It is well known for its Islamic architecture and is a popular tourist destination. Cairo is estimated to have a total wealth of US$140 billion and is home to 8,900 millionaires, 480 multi-millionaires, and 5 billionaires. The city’s major sectors include real estate and construction with financial services. There are over 450 multimillionaires living in Cairo.
Lagos is the most populous city in Africa with a population of over 22 million people. The city is important as a hub of finance, manufacturing, tourism, international business, food and liquor, real estate, and hospitality among others. Lagos is the financial capital of Nigeria and the whole of West Africa. The city’s wealth is estimated at $96 billion.
Lagos is home to Billionaires Aliko Dangote, Folorunsho Alakija, Mike Adenuga, and Femi Otedola. Lagos has about 5400 millionaires.
It is well known that Lagos is one of the busiest ports in the African continent, hence, a lot of money is being made from its import/export trade. Additionally, the city also generates wealth from sectors like real estate & construction, telecoms, basic materials, financial services, transport, etc. There is an estimated $108 billion floating around Lagos, and there are over 350 multi-millionaires living in the city. Although currently bedeviled with its own challenges and issues, Lagos is one of the best states in Nigeria (and Africa as a whole).
It is home to one of the largest populations living in any African city. It is one of the fastest-growing cities in the world and one of the most populous urban areas in the world as well. Lagos without a doubt is one of the major financial centers in Africa. The city is home to one of the largest and busiest ports on the African continent. The city also has the highest GDP of any African city. The total wealth in the hands of private individuals in Lagos is put at US$120 billion. 6,800 millionaires, 360 multi-millionaires, and 4 billionaires call Lagos home.
Durban is another South African city; one that is famous around the world for its beauty and for its cultural diversity. Statistics say that this is one of the busiest places in the country. Durban is the 3rd wealthiest city in the country, and one of the richest in Africa.
Some of the things that make this place important include tourism, real estate, hospitality, finance, manufacturing, and retail commerce. The services sector also plays a good part in the city’s economy
Durban has a population of about 3.721 million- the most of who are young and vibrant; in the prime of their lives, with money to spend. Durban is one of the favorite holiday locations for South Africa. The city has a total wealth of $54 billion.
Durban is the third-most populous city in South Africa behind Johannesburg and Cape Town. Durban is known to be the home of the busiest port in South Africa. It is also one of the major centers of tourism in the country because of the city’s warm subtropical climate and extensive beaches. The city is also the second most important manufacturing hub in South Africa behind Johannesburg. The city is clearly a city of riches as it has the highest number of dollar millionaires added annually of any South African city. The number of millionaires in the city rose by 200% between 2000 and 2014. The total wealth currently held in the city is estimated to be US$46 billion. The city houses 3,200 millionaires, 130 multi-millionaires, and one billionaire. The major economic sectors in Durban include real estate, finance, healthcare, construction, retail, and transport.
Nairobi is the capital city of Kenya. This is also the most economically vibrant city is the whole of East Africa. Nairobi has a population of about 4.5 million people, and has an estimated total wealth of $49 billion. The city is important for trade, manufacturing, finance, food processing, agriculture, tourism, and the service industry.
The political scene in Nairobi is also one that is well saturated with money and wealth. This is the most visited city in East Africa. The city has about 6200 millionaires calling it home.
One of the most beautiful and also one of the fastest-growing cities on the African continent. Nairobi, Kenya, is another rich African city. The city is witnessing some important positive changes and developments in recent times, and things are expected to get only better. Nairobi is the capital and the largest city of one of the regional powerhouses in East Africa, Kenya.
The total wealth in Nairobi is estimated to be about US$55 billion. 6,800 millionaires, 280 multi-millionaires, and no billionaire are believed to inhabit this city. The major economic sectors in this city include; financial services, real estate & construction, retail, tourism, FMCG, telecoms, and basic materials.
Pretoria is another city in South Africa. This is the administrative capital of South Africa; where all the government establishments are located. That is not to say that other sectors of the economy are not functioning in Pretoria; Education, Retail Commerce, Services, Real Estate and Hospitality are all important sectors that keep Pretoria economically sound and buoyant.
Pretoria has an estimated total wealth of $45 billion, and a population of over 2.5 million residents making it one of the most populous cities in South Africa. A good number of the population is employed by the Government of South Africa, while others are employed in the services industry.
Pretoria city is known to be an academic city with three universities and the Council for Scientific and Industrial Research (CSIR) located in its eastern suburbs. The major sectors of the economy in the city include basic materials, manufacturing, and financial services.
Luanda is the capital and the largest city in Angola. This city is important for agriculture, oil production, trade, manufacturing, and finance. Luanda has a population of about 2.572 million, which means there is even more economic potential which has not yet been tapped. Interestingly, Luanda has a total wealth of $42 billion, but there is quite a lot of inequality in the city.
It is expected that with some planned wage adjustments Luanda will get to be home to a wealthier and happier population. The city’s potential is further boosted by the fact that it hosts both the country’s primary seaport and the city’s administrative offices.
Luanda was formerly called São Paulo da Assunção de Loanda. It is the largest city and the most populous city in Angola. It is the third most populous Portuguese-speaking city in the world, behind the duo. It is, however, the most populous Portuguese-speaking capital city in the world, ahead of Brasília, Maputo, and Lisbon. The city is home to 4,100 millionaires, 240 multi-millionaires, and only one billionaire. The major economic sectors in this city include real estate & construction, transport, and basic materials (oil & gas).
Casablanca is the second North African city on this list; it is the largest city in Morocco. Casablanca is a famous city because of its cultural beauty, and the fact that it is an important port city. The city has an estimated population of 3.7 million people, and some of the biggest industries in the city include hospitality, tourism, trade, retail, communication and food processing. Casablanca produces some important brands in processed fish and foods that are famous around Africa.
Many people come into Casablanca to get a taste of the culture, and to tour the ancient cultural sites. Casablanca is also popular because of the desert; people actually come to the city just to have a feel of the desert and to experience the way of life of the desert tribes that live there. Casablanca has a total wealth of $39 billion, and is home to at least 2 dollar billionaires.
Casablanca is the ninth richest city in Africa. Apart from Cairo. Well, Casablanca is not only a popular city, but it’s also an important one, It is one of the largest cities on the African continent both economically and demographically. Although it isn’t the most visited Moroccan city (as far as tourism is concerned), yet, the city is the richest in the country, with thriving and lucrative sectors like basic materials, manufacturing, and financial services.
Accra is an historic city in West Africa. This is the capital of Ghana; and is the second West African city to be significantly wealthy. Accra has a population of 2.6 million people, and is known as the country’s cultural, financial, manufacturing and marketing centre. Accra is also important as West Africa’s centre for the gold trade, and is one of the most important centres for the trade of this precious metal in the whole continent.
Accra is a very important city in West Africa; many manufacturing companies from other countries have relocated to Accra; thus providing lots of jobs for the people. The city is also made more viable by the number of tourists it receives every year, making the hospitality and finance industries in the city very much afloat.
Accra is also a major diplomatic city; US presidents have been known to visit Accra- setting up more diplomatic synergy between Ghana and the West.
Indeed, although some other Ghanaian cities are getting better too, the fact remains that the capital city is home to the largest concentration of wealth in the whole of Ghana. Accra, whose total wealth is placed around $38 billion, also has more excessively rich folks than other cities in the country (it was made known that there are over 100 multi-billionaires living in the city as things stand now). The major sectors generating wealth for Accra are manufacturing, basic materials, and financial services.
With more strategic planning and works, Accra will hopefully grow and move higher as far as the list of richest cities in Africa is concerned.
The richest cities in Africa continue to grow in wealth because the existing resources have been properly harnessed for the benefit of the larger population. A major talking point seems to be the ability to attract visitors from other regions or even outside the continent to come and spend their money in your city. Manufacturing of high quality products is another major economic advantage because it brings in foreign exchange, and raises the standard of living of the inhabitants of the city.
The above cities are some of the most important cities on the African continent and it is no surprise that the rich inhabit them. With more growth being experienced on the African continent, more and more numbers of millionaires and billionaires are being added to the list yearly.
Just as mentioned earlier, there are other rich African cities no doubt. Nevertheless, these ones have grown tremendously well and are leading the pack as things stand now. Hopefully, very soon, more African cities will grow in riches and pull more people out of poverty.
Some African societies are beginning to get things right due to several important steps being carried out. Certain strategic measures are being put in place, and it is rewarding in various regards. Some African cities can now boast of wealth via the growth they have been witnessing in certain important aspects, such as construction, tourism, and so on. Now, there are several rich African cities scattered around the continent. Nevertheless, in this article, we will explore the top ten richest amongst them.