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Recession could trigger wars

PARIS, Jun 5 – The global recession could trigger conflicts in Africa and wipe out economic gains made over the past decade, the chief economist at the African Development Bank warned in Paris on Friday.

"It has got political connotations, social connotations. It can bring social tensions, it can be a trigger for conflicts," Louis Kasekende said on the sidelines of the OECD\’s International Economic Forum on Africa.

"My worst fear would be to get to a point where the growth in real per capital income is less than the population growth rate, pushing people back into poverty. It is a very big problem for Africa," he said.

The Organisation for Economic Cooperation and Development (OECD) says growth will be halved in Africa, with the continent\’s total gross domestic product set to rise just 2.8 percent this year compared to 5.7 percent in 2008.

The International Monetary Fund has forecast 2.0 percent growth in 2009.

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