(Bloomberg) -- East Africa will bounce back to be the continent’s fastest growing region this year and next, according to the African Development Bank’s projections.

The average real growth in gross domestic product for 13 economies in the region is expected to accelerate to 4.9% this year and 5.7% in 2025, the Abidjan-based lender said in a report published on Thursday. That’s despite likely contractions in Sudan and South Sudan due to an ongoing conflict in the oil-producing countries.

Growth will be driven by “strong government spending and strategic investments to improve in-country connectivity and facilitate trade with neighboring nations, cou­pled with ongoing efforts to modernize agricultural production and boost productivity in the services sector,” according to the report.

Africa’s economic growth is seen averaging 4% this year and next, helping the continent retain its ranking as the fastest-growing region in the world after Asia.

About 40 countries in Africa countries will post higher growth this year, with 17 economies projected to expand by more than 5%, and the number could rise to 24 the following year, the AfDB said.

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West Africa will be second with 4.2% growth this year, followed by Central Africa at 4.1%, and North Africa at 3.6%. Southern Africa will be the laggard at 2.2%.

Risks to Growth

Key risks to growth include persistent inflationary pressures and higher commodity prices that could ignite a new wave of price increases and upend the decline in poverty and delay monetary easing.

Climate shocks are a key risk to Africa’s recovery with extreme weather conditions such as flooding in the east and drought in the south hurting economies, the lender said.

Rising geopolitical tensions and polarization, as well as gridlocks in global trade such as Red Sea blockade are downward risks. Regional conflicts and political insta­bility are also impeding output, according to the report.

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