Weak investment and productivity cripples the economy of sub-Saharan Africa. According to the World Bank the region is seen growing more slowly this year than previously forecast.

In a report, it forecast growth in the region to be 2.4 percent in 2017, down from the 2.6 percent that it projected in April. But growth was seen rising to 3.2 percent in 2018 and 3.5 percent in 2019, forecasts unchanged from earlier this year.

In its latest Africa Pulse report, the Bank said the region would be helped by better commodity prices. Lower prices have slowed overall growth in the resource-rich region in the last few years, cutting government revenues.

Sub-Saharan Africa’s growth was an estimated 1.3 percent in 2016, the lowest for two decades.

The Bank said the downgrade to 2017 projections was due to various conditions, including the failure of Nigeria - which has Africa’s biggest economy - to meet expectations.

“Regional per capita output growth is forecast to be negative for the second consecutive year, while investment growth remains low, and productivity growth is falling,” it said.

Nigeria escaped from its first recession in 25 years in the second quarter as oil revenues rose following the cessation of militant attacks on energy facilities in the Niger Delta that last year cut crude production by around a third.