Basic infrastructure in Sierra Leone requires investment

6 Jul 2020

Located in West Africa, Sierra Leone has a population of 8 million. We expect it to grow by 21% to reach 9.6 million by 2030.

The economy depends on subsistence agriculture and mining. The country has substantial mineral deposits such as iron ore and diamonds, which make up the bulk of the exports. The economy is vulnerable to fluctuations in international prices of iron ore and diamonds. Sierra Leone had a GDP of $4 billion or around $550 per capita in 2019.

Power and Water:

The electricity access rate in urban areas is less than 50% and it’s almost non-existent in rural areas. The country aims to improve the overall access rate to 90% by 2030 and requires investment now to improve its power generation capacity. We predict the country will require an additional 70 megawatts of electricity capacity over a period of 10 years to help maintain its current access rate.

There is limited access to potable water in Sierra Leone. Around 40% of the population lacks access to safe water while rural areas are affected the most. In order to improve the overall coverage, significant investment is required. The water distribution network needs to expand into both urban and rural areas to ensure access to potable water. Using ABiQ’s forecasting tool, we are able to predict the country will require 125 million cubic metres of additional potable water per annum by 2030.


The retail sector has not developed well due to the high risk and challenging environment in the country. The market will grow in the coming years as consumer spending increases. We estimate the country will require 185,000 square metres of retail space over the next decade to meet the demands of a growing sector.


A decade long civil war decimated the healthcare sector and the Ebola outbreak in 2014 accentuated the dire state it is in. The country aims to achieve universal healthcare by 2030 and is working towards the goal. We expect the country will need 12 more hospitals over 10 years to meet the demands of the growing population.

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Sierra Leone

Population in 2020 

8.0 million 

Population by 2030 

9.6 million 

Population growth from 2020 to 2030 

21 % 

GDP 2019 (est)

$ 4 bn 

Electricity Capacity required by 2030 

70 MW 

Additional Potable Water required per annum by 2030 

125 million m3 

Additional retail by 2030 

185,000 m2 

New Hospitals required by 2030 



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