A new report from the Partnership for a New American Economy Research Fund details the significant economic contributions to the United States economy made by immigrants from sub-Saharan African nations.
“Power of the Purse: How Sub-Saharan Africans Contribute to the U.S. Economy” finds that between 2010 and 2015, the number of African immigrants living in the United States more than doubled reaching a total of 1.7 million people. Some 40 percent of African immigrants are college educated. This is a higher percentage than the white adult population of the United States. Furthermore more a third of African immigrants with a college education have a degree in a STEM field. For the college-educated population as a whole, the figure is 25 percent.
The reports notes that African immigrants to the United States earned more than $55 billion and paid more than $10 billion in federal taxes. Almost 30 percent of Africans immigrants in the workforce were employed in industries related to healthcare, filling a pressing need in an area with large numbers of job openings.
“Our findings suggest that African immigrants punch well above their weight in many respects,” the report says. “For example, they naturalize at high rates. They attain higher levels of education than the overall U.S. population as a whole, and are more likely to have earned their degree in a Science, Technology, Engineering, and Math, or STEM, field. They also make meaningful contributions to several vital sectors of the economy – including healthcare – where employers have persistent challenges finding enough workers.”