August 22, 2023 | Working Paper
  • Type of publication: Working Paper
  • Research or In The Media: Research
  • Research Area: African Development Policy
  • Publication Date: 2023-08-22
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  • Authors:
    • Add Authors: Léonce Ndikumana
  • Show in Front Page Modules: No


This paper is part of a project that investigates domestic and global drivers and enablers of capital flight from Cameroon, Ghana, and Zambia, three countries that are significantly endowed in natural resources. It presents estimates of capital flight from these three countries and discusses the key drivers of the phenomenon.

The results show that as of 2021, estimated total capital flight stood at $71.1 billion for Cameroon, $50 billion for Ghana, and $71.5 billion for Zambia. External borrowing and, in the cases of Zambia and Cameroon, trade misinvoicing, are key correlates of capital flight. While external borrowing directly and indirectly drives capital flight, trade misinvoicing constitutes an important mechanism of unrecorded cross-border capital flows. This study contributes to the efforts to uncover the mechanisms and enablers of capital flight from Africa, with the aim of shedding light on possible strategies to curb further capital outflows in the context of efforts to scale up and diversify development financing to support recovery from global crises, the transition to green growth, and sustainable development in Africa.

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