A staff team from the International Monetary Fund (IMF) led by Mr. Dan Ghura visited Abidjan from June 24 to July 7, 2016, to negotiate a new three-year economic program that could be supported by the IMF through Arrangements under the Extended Credit Facility (ECF) and the Enhanced Credit Facility (EFF). At the conclusion of the mission, Mr. Ghura, issued the following statement:
“The Ivoirien authorities and the IMF team have made good progress in discussing policies that could be supported by new IMF arrangements, with a view to cementing Côte d’Ivoire’s impressive economic performance over the past four years achieved in the context of the previous program supported by the IMF through an ECF Arrangement.”
“Solid macroeconomic performance continued in 2015 and the first quarter of 2016. Real GDP growth is estimated at 8.5 percent in 2015, driven by strong investment and private consumption, notwithstanding the adverse impact of lower-than-expected rainfall on agriculture. The latter contributed to an increase in year-on-year inflation to 2.3 percent in May 2016. Strong revenues, an under execution of externally-financed capital spending, and expenditures containment measures helped limit the 2015 fiscal deficit to 3 percent of GDP and have contributed to satisfactory budget execution in the first quarter of 2016.”
“Macroeconomic prospects for the remainder of 2016 and the medium term are favorable, provided policies are geared towards mitigating external and domestic risks. Real GDP growth is projected at about 8 percent in 2016, supported by the dynamism of the secondary and tertiary sectors. The budget deficit is expected to widen somewhat beyond the 3.5 percent of GDP target of the 2016 Finance Law, on the back of higher spending, including for security, health and education.”
“The Ivoirien authorities and the IMF team concurred that to preserve public debt sustainability and support the regional international reserve pool, the government’s budget deficit should converge to the WAEMU norm of 3 percent of GDP by 2019. This would require boosting domestic revenue mobilization.”
“The mission takes note of the authorities’ plans to accelerate the restructuring of public banks. The mission is encouraged by the government’s intentions to address fiscal risks emanating from some public enterprises in financial difficulties.”
“A follow-up IMF mission is expected to visit Abidjan in September of this year when details of the draft 2017 Budget under preparation will be available, with a view to continue discussions on a new IMF-supported economic and financial program.”
“The IMF team thanks the Ivoirien authorities for their hospitality and for the constructive discussions.”
The mission met and had constructive discussions with President Ouattara; Mr. Daniel Kablan Duncan, Prime Minister and Minister of Economy, Finance and Budget; Mr. Thierry Tanoh, Minister, Deputy General Secretary at the Presidency in charge of Economy and Finance; Mr. Adama Kone, Minister at the Prime Minister’s Office in charge of Economy and Finance; Mr. Abdourahmane Cisse, Minister at the Prime Minister’s Office in charge of the Budget and State Holdings; Ms. Nialé Kaba, Minister of Plan and Development; Mr. Adama Toungara, Minister of Petroleum and Energy; other senior public officials, including from the Banque des Etats d’Afrique de l’Ouest (BCEAO), as well as representatives of the private sector, the donor community and civil society.
Distributed by APO on behalf of International Monetary Fund (IMF).