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List of regions of Africa

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The five region according to the United Nations geoscheme for Africa.
The five regions of the African Union.
The five regions of the Confederation of African Football.

The continent of Africa is commonly divided into five regions or subregions, four of which are in sub-Saharan Africa.

List of subregions in Africa


The five UN subregions:[1]

Subregion Country or territory
Northern Africa  Azores (Portugal)
 Canary Islands (Spain)
 Ceuta (Spain)
 Madeira (Portugal)
 Melilla (Spain)
 Western Sahara
Eastern Africa  British Indian Ocean Territory (United Kingdom)
 French Southern Territories (France)
 Mayotte (France)
 Reunion (France)
 South Sudan
Middle Africa  Angola
 Central African Republic
 DR Congo
 Equatorial Guinea
 São Tomé and Príncipe
Southern Africa  Botswana
 South Africa
Western Africa  Benin
 Burkina Faso
 Cape Verde
 Côte d'Ivoire (Ivory Coast)
 Gambia, The
 Saint Helena, Ascension and Tristan da Cunha
 Sierra Leone

Directional approach


One common approach categorizes Africa directionally, e.g., by cardinal direction (compass direction):

This approach is taken, for example, in the United Nations geoscheme for Africa and the regions of the African Union.

Physiographic approach

Satellite image of Africa, showing the ecological break that defines the sub-Saharan area

Another common approach divides Africa by using features such as landforms, climatic regions, or vegetation types:

Linguistic approach

Map showing the traditional language families represented in Africa:
  Afroasiatic (Semitic-Hamitic)
  Austronesian (Malay-Polynesian)
  Central and Eastern Sudanese
  Central Bantoid
  Eastern Bantoid
  Western Bantoid

By official language

Official languages in Africa
  other languages

By indigenous language family


Investment approach


A slightly less common, but equally important method of division of the continent is by investment factors. For the purposes of investing, Africa is not a single destination with a single set of standardized risk factors and homogeneous potential for reward.[2] Although some high-level similarities are evident, digging into the specifics of certain regions and countries shows that Africa comprises a range of distinct investment destinations, each with its own attractions, flaws, cultural differences and business practices.[3][4]

The investment approach was first developed by global, independent financial analytics provider and investment consultant, RisCura:

See also



1.^ Sahrawi Arab Democratic Republic: sovereignty disputed with Morocco


  1. ^ "Geographic Regions". United Nations Statistics Division. 2021. Retrieved 2 May 2021.
  2. ^ "Compelling investment markets in Africa – Inside Riscura's Bright Africa 2015 Report: Debbie O'Hanlon, Senior Analyst, RisCura (Infographics) | African Business News | African Financial & Economic News". African Business Central. Retrieved 2015-11-09.
  3. ^ "Segmenting Africa into meaningful markets | Bright Africa". www.riscura.com. Retrieved 2015-11-06.
  4. ^ "Meaningful African markets for investment". Capital Markets in Africa. 22 September 2015. Retrieved 2015-11-06.
  5. ^ "UMA". www.maghrebarabe.org. Archived from the original on 2010-04-20. Retrieved 2015-11-09.
  6. ^ "What Is the Arab Spring?". About.com News & Issues. Retrieved 2015-11-09.
  7. ^ "Sudan - Egypt Relations". www.globalsecurity.org. Retrieved 2015-11-09.
  8. ^ Kessler, Oren (23 August 2015). "Trading Peace in Egypt and Israel". Foreign Affairs. Retrieved 2015-11-11.
  9. ^ "What it takes to succeed in Francophone Africa" (PDF).