industries were unsustainable and were abandoned during the difficult economic
period in the 1980s and 1990s, leaving many African countries crippled by debt. In response to these economic problems, a series of political measures were taken that
finally renewed growth: liberalisation of agricultural markets; closure or privatisation of
state-owned companies; opening to international trade; reduction of external debt;
and improvement of the current account balance, either through sound
macroeconomic policies or external aid, including debt cancellation. The growth of the
services sector also played a major role.