Problems of Developing Countries – WASSCE Past Question

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Problems of Developing Countries is an examination question by WAEC. As a matter of fact, developing economies are also called less developed countries or third world countries.



Furthermore, developing economy refers to a country, which is experiencing a gradual but sustained improvement in the economic welfare of its people.

Nevertheless, these countries have the potential of improving its growth rate. Examples of Developing economies in Africa are Ghana, Nigeria, Burkina Faso, Liberia, etc.  

In addition to that, developing countries and the challenges they face, is a phenomenon researched by many people especially students (including those writing WASSCE).

Furthermore, WAEC Business Management WASSCE examination questions set on this topic are interesting, but can be tricky sometimes.

Therefore, educareguide is here to assist you in to fully understand this topic very well. Asks this question for examination purposes.

Moreover, the topic “Problems of Developing Economies” is an integral part of the Business Management for Senior High School Students across the West African sub-region.

In detail, these countries include Nigeria, Ghana, Sierra Leone, The Gambia and Liberia.

Now let’s look at the Problems of Developing Countries below:


Problems of developing countries/economies


High Rate of Population Growth:

Increased population growth rate is one of the problems of a developing economy.

Most of the developing economics experience population explosion and the causes of this include, high birth rate, low mortality rate and migration.

The consequences of high rate of population growth include unemployment, lack of capital, migration from rural to urban centers, inadequate infrastructural services, etc.

To control high rate of population growth, Governments of developing economies must step up public education on birth control measures through effective family planning, programmes.


Developing economies are always saddled with unemployment problems.

The unemployment situation in Ghana and other developing economics is not only affecting unskilled and uneducated people, but graduates as well, many of whom are roaming in the cities and travelling abroad in search of employment.


Single Export Dependency:

One of the main problems facing developing economies is that, they depend on single export item or few primary products.

The dependence on a single export item is a very dangerous economic strategy as fluctuations on the world market may lead to decreasing export earnings from such items.

To solve this problem, developing economies should adopt the policy of diversification of their export items. They should produce more of the non-. traditional export products.

For example, Ghana now exports maize, yarn, pineapples, charcoal, brooms and handicrafts instead of relying on only cocoa.

Developing economies should also set up factories to process the raw materials into semi-finished or finished products and thereby increase their value to earn more foreign exchange.


Import Dependency:

This means greater dependence or reliance on goods and services from other countries.

In West Africa the citizens have developed a strong taste for imported goods and as such whatever the price, they are preferred to locally manufactured products.

This is because it is normally assumed that the quality of imported goods is better than the locally manufactured products.

This increases the import bills of West Africa countries as against low export figures leading to Balance of Payments deficits.

Imports discourage and kill the infant industries. The business skill of entrepreneurs is killed as the market for locally manufactured goods and services are often exploited by imports.

To solve this problem the government can restrict imports by the use of quotas, embargoes and tariffs.

The citizens should also be encouraged to buy locally manufactured products and industries should also be encouraged to produce good quality products.


Shortage of High-Level Manpower:

Shortage of skilled manpower is another problem facing developing economies: Manpower refers to the human resources of a country.

The issue of brain drain which refers to the exodus of skilled manpower to other countries with better working conditions, has now become associated with developing economies.

Engineers, doctors, accountants, etc. are in short supply because those trained leave (travel) the country to sell their services elsewhere.

The gap created is filled by expatriate personnel whose remuneration is in excess of what is paid to locally trained personnel.

To solve this problem, governments of developing countries should set up universities and other institutions to train. the citizens to provide the needed manpower.

Governments should also ensure that better working conditions are created in their countries in order to attract all those who are trained abroad to come back home and those who are already in these countries should be encouraged to stay and work harder.


Inadequacy of Capital:

This is another problem facing developing. Capital accumulation in these economies is difficult because of the vicious cycle of poverty.

Low incomes lead to low savings, which leads to low investment and therefore low output.


Primitive Methods of Agriculture:

Despite the importance of agriculture to developing economies, the various governments have not been able to provide solutions to the many problems facing the sector especially the primitive methods of farming.

Most of the farmers still depend on the hoe and cutlass. They rely on natural rainfall as the main source of farming.

It is high time West African countries started mechanized farming by using tractors, bulldozers, fertilizers and sophisticated irrigational systems and other modern agricultural practices which will lead to an increase in agricultural produce.


Political Instability:

Political instability should not be ignored when discussing the problems of developing economies. It is a vital force because there is a very close relationship between economic development and political stability.

Most developing countries are not politically stable, e.g., there are frequent changes in government etc. Normally political instability may introduce setbacks. to the economic progress of a country.

If the government is unstable, foreign investors would stay away. Governments should therefore create conditions needed for the attainment of stability.


Leadership Problems:

Majority of the leaders in developing countries do not direct well the human and natural resources of such countries and this leads to low economic development.


Financial Misappropriation/Embezzlement:

These are major problems associated with developing countries and these generally retard economic development.


From the above, educareguide can conclude that, the governments of developing countries must endeavour to put in programmes and policies to overcome these chronic problems.



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