More people lived in urban than rural areas for the first time ever in 2007. This year it is estimated that 54 per cent of the world’s population live in cities and by 2050 it is predicted to hit 66 per cent, a mirror image of the two-thirds living in rural areas at the mid-point of the twentieth century. This is expected to come about as development fuels mass internal migration in Africa and Asia. The UN makes no effort to standardise individual countries definitions of urban: population numbers, density and the proportion not working in agriculture and other are all used by different statistical offices.
The current Ebola virus outbreak has claimed more than 4,000 lives in West Africa, as well as one in the US where the victim had been visiting Liberia, the country with the highest death toll so far.
Our interactive graphic tracks the outbreak’s spread since the World Health Organisation first issued a global alert in March 2014
by Gavin Jackson and Keith Fray
On Tuesday the International Monetary Fund released its latest World Economic Outlook. A striking new finding emerges: the seven largest emerging markets are now bigger, in gross domestic product terms, than the long established G7 group of industrialised nations, when measured at purchasing power parity (PPP). Read more
By Tom Burgis, Caroline Nevitt, and Martin Stabe
Chinese investment in postwar Angola set the template for major infrastructure deals in Africa over the past decade. FT’s Tom Burgis explains Beijing’s quest for a continent’s resources. Read more
Under a remote mountainside in Guinea, one of west Africa’s poorest but most mineral-rich nations, lies one of the world’s biggest undeveloped deposits of iron ore.
Developing the Simandou deposit and building the railway and port required to export the ore are expected to cost an estimated $20bn – three times Guinea’s gross domestic product. Read more