The African continent possesses a vast amount of natural resources both under its precious land like platinum, gold and copper and on the ground like timber and fertile land itself. Natural resources form the basis of the economies of most African countries and constitute the main livelihood for its people.
Of primary importance are agricultural products and mineral resources. These resources are used for subsistence and for commercial purposes. Africa is the world's major producer of cobalt, gold, diamonds and platinum, and is also an increasingly important exporter of petroleum. In addition Africa possesses the second largest tropical rain forest.
Africa is rich, but who benefits?
The rise in prices for raw materials, renewable energy and food has intensified the pressure for exploitation, while extraction in many cases is already associated with environmental degradation, bad governance, social problems and conflict.
Sub-Saharan Africa - Mineral resources and political instability.
Africa, south of Sahara, is a region with plenty of valuable mineral resources - metals, oil and diamonds. Foreign investments lead the extraction and exploration in many of these places to supply the world markets. This region is also the site of several open conflicts, recent and trying peace and political instability. Foreign armed forces are present in military bases and peace keeping forces.
Copyright: Philippe Rekacewicz, Le Monde Diplomatique. Source: http://maps.grida.no/go/graphic/sub-saharan-africa-mineral-resources-and-political-instability