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The world's fastest growing economy, in one of its poorest nations

An Ethiopian policeman looks at his mobile phone while people dry their clothes in Lalibela, Ethiopia. Photo: Eric Lafforgue/Art in All of Us/Corbis via Getty Images

The world's fastest growing economy is not India (6.7% in 2017) or China (6.8%), but Ethiopia, according to a World Bank estimate that puts the East African country's 2017 growth at 8.5% and projects 8.2% growth in 2018, ranking second only to Ghana (8.3%).

The big picture: With 102 million people, Ethiopia is the 2nd most populous country in Africa and the 12th most populous on earth. It's also one of the world’s poorest countries —sitting just above Haiti and below Afghanistan in terms of GDP per capita — and its rapid growth has brought millions out of extreme poverty. But ethnic violence, a government crackdown and high unemployment are putting "one of Africa’s brightest success stories" at risk, per Eurasia Group's Signal newsletter.