An International Monetary Fund (IMF) mission, led by Mr. Luca Antonio Ricci, conducted the 2022 Article IV consultation talks with the authorities from April 5 to 15.
At the conclusion of the mission, Mr. Ricci made the following statement:
“Côte d'Ivoire's economy has remained resilient in the face of the pandemic due to the rapid and well-designed response policies of the Ivorian authorities. COVID-related deaths have been low by international standards, while vaccination efforts continue and about half of the target population have received a first dose so far.
“After a 2 percent slowdown in 2020, economic growth is expected to rebound strongly to an estimated 7 percent in 2021, driven by a pick-up in consumption and investment. Price inflation reached 5.6% in December 2021, mainly reflecting an increase in world prices, before falling slightly to 4.5% in March. The overall fiscal deficit reached 5.1 percent of GDP in 2021, ½ percent of GDP below the budget forecast, mainly due to gains from strengthening the tax administration and ongoing digitization efforts, which in turn offset higher spending on security.
“The deteriorating external environment related to the war in Ukraine is expected to influence the macroeconomic outlook in 2022. IMF staff forecast growth to slow to 6% this year due to subdued global demand, deteriorating terms of trade and greater uncertainty. The authorities have taken a series of temporary measures to contain the effects of the war in Ukraine and preserve food security, including maximum prices for various food products, subsidies for petroleum products and export permit requirements for some staple foods.
“The macroeconomic outlook is favourable, but Côte d'Ivoire still faces external downside risks. These risks stem primarily from the global fallout from the war in Ukraine, tighter monetary policy in advanced countries and the associated rise in the cost of borrowing, as well as continued instability in some neighboring countries. The country also faces upside risks, in particular the recent substantial discovery of oil and gas and a determined implementation of reforms under the National Development Plan (NDP) 2021-25 could help boost the medium-term outlook.
“The staff encouraged the authorities to closely assess the impact of the measures that have been taken so far to mitigate the effects of the war in Ukraine and to ensure that such measures do not create market distortions, remain temporary and are well targeted. to the most vulnerable. and remain in line with medium-term fiscal sustainability objectives.
“Staff emphasized the importance of preserving macroeconomic and debt sustainability by properly anchoring expectations. The staff anticipates that, to the extent that the external situation improves, it will remain feasible to achieve the WAEMU convergence criterion of a 3% fiscal deficit target by 2024. Over time, it will also be essential to rebuild the buffers.
“Côte d'Ivoire authorities and IMF staff agreed that continuing to strengthen domestic revenue mobilization is crucial to financing critical spending and improving macroeconomic resilience. Despite recent efforts, tax revenues remain relatively low by international standards. Staff noted the need to continue mobilizing additional domestic resources for priority spending to promote social convergence, as well as to finance critical infrastructure and public services.
“IMF staff welcomed the National Development Plan (NDP) 2021-25 approved in December 2021, which aims to accelerate economic and social transformation. It emphasizes improving the role of the private sector, industrialization, human capital, productivity, and governance. The authorities must continue to improve the business environment and infrastructure, safeguarding property rights, promoting access to credit, and encouraging export diversification. It is also crucial to continue developing sustainable policies for adaptation to climate change and mitigation of associated risks.
“Continuing to improve the provision of public services and deepening social convergence remains essential to support more inclusive and sustainable growth. The authorities made significant efforts under the government social program PSGouv 2019-2020, in particular, expanding access to electricity, drinking water and education throughout the country. However, efforts must continue to improve both the efficiency of spending and access to more efficient public services. In this regard, ongoing efforts to improve access to health care, expand training for health professionals, and strengthen vocational training programs are welcome.
"The IMF team would like to express its appreciation to the authorities and other stakeholders for the open and constructive discussions."
The IMF team met with Prime Minister Patrick Achi; the Minister and Secretary General of the Presidency Abdourahmane Cissé; the Minister of State for Agriculture and Rural Development, Kobenan Kouassi Adjoumani, the Minister of Economy and Finance, Adama Coulibaly; the Minister of Budget and State Assets, Moussa Sanogo; the Minister of Planning and Development, Nialé Kaba; the Minister of Public Services and Modernization of the Administration, Anne Désirée Ouloto; the Minister of Public Health, Sanitation and Universal Health Coverage, Pierre Dimba; the Minister of Mining, Oil and Energy Thomas Camara; Minister for Environment and Sustainable Development Jean-Luc Assi, Minister for Trade and Industry Souleymane Diarrassouba, Minister for Technical and Vocational Training Koffi N'Guessan, National Director of BCEAO Chalouho Coulibaly; and other senior government and BCEAO officials, as well as representatives from the business and donor communities.
The IMF staff and the Ivorian authorities agreed that a key and pressing political priority remains the need to improve domestic revenue mobilization.WASHINGTON DC, United States of America, February 5, 2022/APO Group/ --
The Omicron variant has had limited effects in Côte d'Ivoire and authorities are intensifying their vaccination efforts; The economy of Côte d'Ivoire continues to show signs of resilience in the face of the impact of the pandemic. Inflation has risen recently, largely due to food prices; Côte d'Ivoire's next Article IV consultation is expected to take place in April 2022.
A team of International Monetary Fund (IMF) staff led by Luca Antonio Ricci conducted a virtual staff visit to the Ivory Coast authorities from January 25 to February 3, 2022 to discuss recent economic developments and economic prospects.
Concluding the IMF staff's virtual visit, Mr. Ricci issued the following statement:
“The IMF staff team notes that despite the spread of the Omicron variant, the increase in new cases was short-lived and increases in severe cases and hospitalizations remained limited. In this way, the authorities were able to avoid the introduction of disruptive containment measures in the implementation of the national strategy to combat COVID-19. On the vaccination front, progress has been made, with more than 8 million doses administered by the end of January. The authorities plan to accelerate the vaccination campaign to administer another 5 million doses before the end of February 2022.
“Ivory Coast's economy continues to show signs of resilience to the pandemic and sustained recovery in 2021. Inflation increased significantly in 2021, in line with international inflationary pressures and largely due to food price inflation. . As noted at the time of the 2021 Article IV consultation, economic growth is expected to remain strong in 2022 and beyond.
“Regarding risks, on the positive side, the medium-term outlook could benefit from both the implementation of a strong reform agenda in the context of the National Development Plan and the discovery in 2021 of additional oil and gas reserves. At the same time, the economy is subject to downside risks, such as the emergence of new variants of COVID-19, disruptions in global supply chains, international geopolitical tensions, and tightening global financial market conditions with adverse consequences for investors. capital flows to emerging markets. and developing economies.
“The IMF staff and the Ivorian authorities agreed that a key and pressing political priority remains the need to improve domestic revenue mobilization. This would help finance productive and social spending to support strong and inclusive growth, while preserving macroeconomic and debt sustainability and enhancing macroeconomic resilience.
“The 2022 Article IV consultation mission is tentatively planned for April 2022 and will provide an opportunity to discuss economic prospects and policy developments in greater detail.
"The IMF staff wishes to express its appreciation to the Ivorian authorities and other stakeholders for productive and fruitful discussions."
IMF staff held virtual meetings with Prime Minister Patrick Achi; the Minister and Secretary General of the Presidency Abdourahmane Cissé; the Minister of Economy and Finance Adama Coulibaly; the Minister of Budget and State Assets, Moussa Sanogo; the Minister of Planning and Development, Nialé Kaba; Minister for Governance Promotion, Capacity Building and Anti-Corruption Epiphane Zoro Bi Ballo; other senior government and BCEAO officials, private sector representatives and development partners from Côte d'Ivoire.
Fiscal policy must remain anchored in a credible revenue-based consolidation towards a fiscal deficit of 3% of GDP by 2024WASHINGTON DC, United States of America, January 11, 2022 / APO Group / -
Recent indicators suggest that a strong recovery is taking place, driven by industrial production, services and retail activity. The number of COVID-19 cases remains comparatively low and around 14 percent of the adult population is vaccinated. The results of the program continue to be satisfactory. Along with PCI, the SCF / SBA arrangements are helping to support the authorities' response to the crisis; promote a broad-based recovery; catalyze additional concessional financing; and strengthen UEMOA's external position. The completion of the first reviews under the SCF / SBA allows the disbursement of SDR 129.4 million (about US $ 180 million). Maintaining macroeconomic stability, improving public service delivery, phasing out energy subsidies, increasing investment in education and social protection, as well as accelerating reforms aimed at overcoming key constraints for private sector development, they will support strong, inclusive and job-rich growth.
Today, the Executive Board of the International Monetary Fund (IMF) completed the Fourth Review under the Policy Coordination Instrument (PCI) and the First Reviews Under the Stand-by Agreement (SBA) and the Agreement under the Standby Credit Facility (SCF).  Completion of the reviews allows for the release of SDR 129.4 million (about US $ 180 million), bringing total disbursements under the agreements to SDR 258.8 million (about US $ 360 million).
Senegal's three-year ICP was approved on January 10, 2020 and is based on three pillars: (i) achieving inclusive and private-sector-led growth, (ii) consolidating macroeconomic stability through prudent fiscal policy and solid debt, and (iii) manage oil and gas revenues in a sustainable and transparent manner (see Press Release No. 20/06).
Senegal's 18-month SCF / SBA arrangements, totaling 140 percent of the quota, were approved on June 7, 2021 to help support the authorities' response to the COVID-19 crisis, catalyze financing additional concessionaire and strengthen the country's external position. WAEMU (see Press Release No. 21/259). Authorities are meeting their commitments regarding transparency of COVID-19 spending; have released detailed budget execution reports, a special audit of the COVID-19 fund, and an audit on the regularity of COVID-19 recruitment procedures. The final report of the Court of Auditors on the 2020 budget and the execution of the COVID-19 spending is expected in March 2022.
The Executive Board also concluded the 2021 Article IV consultation  with Senegal.
A strong economic recovery has been taking place since mid-2020, driven by industrial production and the service sector, and 2021 growth has been revised up from 3½ to around 5 percent. The recovery is expected to continue into 2022 and beyond, with a temporary new boost in oil and gas production in 2023–24.
The 2021 second supplementary budget incorporates additional one-off expenditures related to the use of approximately two-thirds of Senegal's SDR allocation (0.9% of GDP) to support recovery and strengthen social protection and the health sector, including the national production of vaccines. This, along with additional spending on energy subsidies, will bring the 2021 deficit to 6.3 percent of GDP. Senegal's public sector debt is projected to reach 73 percent of GDP in 2021 before gradually decreasing to less than 60 percent of GDP. The 2021 current account deficit is projected to widen to 10.6% of GDP and decline to around 5% of GDP in the medium term. The financial system remained resilient during the pandemic, in part due to the accommodative stance of the regional central bank (BCEAO), including the additional provision of liquidity to banks.
The outlook is for stronger and more sustained activity, as the impact of the pandemic is waning, but it is subject to significant uncertainty and risks are sloping downward. These include repeated COVID-19 outbreaks, a deteriorating regional security situation, delays in the start of oil and gas production, and a rapid rise in global interest rates.
Following the Executive Board discussion, Mr. Kenji Okamura, Deputy Managing Director and Acting President, issued the following statement:
“The COVID-19 pandemic interrupted a decade of high growth and development in Senegal. It caused serious difficulties for many households, although the impact on the Senegalese economy was mitigated by the vigorous response of the authorities. Senegal's economy is now on the way to a solid recovery.
“The outlook is favorable as long as risks and growing vulnerabilities are well managed. Risks are sloping to the downside, including the prolonged impact of the pandemic, higher oil prices, a volatile regional security environment, slower implementation of reforms, and delays in the start of oil and gas production. Public debt has risen continuously in recent years and risks to debt sustainability must be carefully monitored.
“The authorities' reform agenda, supported by the Policy Coordination Instrument, the Stand-By Agreement and the agreement under the Standby Credit Facility, remains appropriate to achieve the objectives of the strong and inclusive growth program while maintaining macroeconomic stability and risks to debt sustainability are limited. .
“Fiscal policy must remain anchored in a credible revenue-based consolidation towards a fiscal deficit of 3 percent of GDP by 2024, in line with WAEMU commitments. Communication and implementation of the medium-term revenue mobilization strategy and steps to limit fuel subsidies while protecting the vulnerable are essential in this regard.
Achieving more inclusive growth will also require further improving the business environment, enhancing the social safety net, expanding access to quality education and tackling youth unemployment. The SDR allocation provides additional policy space to support the health sector and economic recovery. Ongoing reforms to improve public financial management will help strengthen the efficiency and transparency of spending, particularly for SDR-related spending.
"While the financial system remained resilient during the pandemic, long-standing weaknesses, including deficiencies in the AML / CFT framework, will need to be addressed and reforms to promote financial inclusion must be accelerated."
 The PCI is a non-financial tool open to all members of the International Monetary Fund (IMF). It enables them to signal commitment to reforms and catalyze funding from other sources. The establishment of the ICP is part of the Fund's broader effort to strengthen the global financial safety net, a network of insurance and loan instruments that countries can turn to if faced with a crisis.
 In an economic crisis, countries often need financing to help them overcome their balance of payments problems. Since its inception in June 1952, the IMF's SBA has been the workhorse lending instrument for advanced and emerging market countries. The SBA was updated in 2009 along with the Fund's broader toolkit to be more flexible and responsive to the needs of member countries. Terms were streamlined and simplified, and more funds were made available upfront. The reform also allows for wider elevated access on a precautionary basis.
 The SCF provides financial assistance to low-income countries (LICs) with short-term balance of payments needs. The SCF was created within the framework of the Poverty Reduction and Growth Trust (PRGT) as part of a broader reform to make the Fund's financial support more flexible and better tailored to the diverse needs of countries in the world. low income, even in times of shocks or crises.
 Pursuant to Article IV of the Articles of Agreement of the IMF, the IMF holds bilateral discussions with members, generally every year. A team of staff visits the country, collects economic and financial information, and discusses with officials the country's economic and political developments. Upon returning to headquarters, staff prepare a report, which forms the basis for the Executive Board discussion.
The success of the IMF program also depends on a series of reforms aimed at improving the transparency, accountability, and efficiency of public finances.WASHINGTON DC, United States of America, December 13, 2021 / APO Group / -
Progress on the Staff Monitored Program (SMP) reform agenda has continued since the first review in October 2021; Strengthening revenue mobilization and new tax yields and ensuring spending containment remain essential to shore up debt sustainability and support growth and social spending; Macroeconomic stabilization, strong governance, and transparency measures will help secure concessional financing and grants from international partners and encourage private investment.
A team of staff from the International Monetary Fund (IMF), headed by Mr. José Gijón, held virtual and face-to-face meetings with the authorities, from November 30 to December 13, 2021, to carry out the second review of the 9 supervised months By staff. Program (SMP). The review aimed to assess the efforts being made to build a policy track record towards an Extended Credit Facility (ECF) arrangement in 2022.
At the end of the visit, Mr. Gijón issued the following statement:
“The IMF team reached a staff-level agreement with the authorities on the completion of the second review of the SMP. The review is subject to the approval of the IMF Management. Overall performance and progress on the reform program have been strong despite difficult socioeconomic conditions exacerbated by the COVID-19 pandemic. Most of the structural benchmarks and quantitative targets assessed at the end of September 2021 have been met.
“Despite this challenging context, Guinea-Bissau's economic recovery continued until 2021 and the medium-term outlook is strengthening. Inflation should remain around 3 percent in line with the West African Economic and Monetary Union (WAEMU) regional threshold.
“The 2022 budget approved by Parliament on December 9 is consistent with the policy measures agreed between the IMF staff and the authorities to ensure the key objectives of the program. These measures aim to reduce the projected fiscal deficit to around 4.2 percent of GDP in 2022 and gradually converge to the WAEMU regional deficit rule of 3 percent of GDP by 2025. The fiscal strategy aims to reduce the level of some current expenses, including the wage bill and debt service, while strengthening the profitability of taxes, including those of new implementation, such as the telecommunications tax, and the digitization of tax collection.
“Macro-fiscal consolidation will help to avoid arrears and to contain the level of public debt that is above the limit defined in the WAEMU convergence pact, and to generate space for spending in priority areas favorable to growth such as health, education and infrastructure. In this regard, IMF staff support the authorities' decision to use the allocation of SDR 27.2 million to Guinea-Bissau (about US $ 38.4 million) for the early payment of costly external debt and for COVID-19 related expenses, including vaccination and improvement. in health services. Authorities have already managed to significantly increase the proportion of the target population fully vaccinated (around 35 percent in early December 2021).
“The success of the IMF program also depends on a series of reforms aimed at improving the transparency, accountability and efficiency of public finances. This includes the completion and publication of an independent audit of COVID-19 spending as part of the governance safeguards committed by IMF members who have received emergency funding such as the Rapid Credit Facility (RCF) disbursed to Guinea-Bissau in January 2021. The authorities are also formulating an amendment to the procurement legal framework to ensure the collection and publication of the names of the successful bidders and the information related to the final beneficiary, as well as ex-post reports on the validation of the delivery. of goods and services. They are also preparing a reform of the asset disclosure regime to combat corruption. Another critical reform of the governance of public finances is the gradual establishment of a Single Treasury Account. These efforts will help foster financial support from international partners and investment decisions from the private sector.
“IMF staff will continue to support the authorities' efforts to reach out to other international partners to mobilize grants and concessional financing, and to support the reform agenda, including through the provision of appropriate capacity development.
“The IMF team met with HE President Sissoco Embaló, Prime Minister Nabiam, Deputy Prime Minister Sambú, Minister of Finance Fadiá, the National Director of BCEAO Embaló, the President of the Baldé Court of Accounts and the High Commission for the COVID-19. The team also met with officials from the Ministries of Finance, Economy, the National Directorate of the BCEAO, the National Institute of Statistics, the Financial Intelligence Unit and other officials. In addition, the team met with representatives from various public and private sector companies and key international partners.
"The team thanks the authorities for their openness and constructive discussions and looks forward to continued close cooperation that paves the way for an Extended Credit Facility (ECF) agreement in 2022."
Authorities and staff discussed policies and reforms underlying the SMPWASHINGTON DC, United States of America, October 12, 2021 / APO Group / -
Progress on the Staff Monitored Program (SMP) reform program has been satisfactory despite difficult socio-economic conditions made worse by the COVID-19 pandemic; Ensuring revenue mobilization and expenditure containment, including in the wage bill, will help free up space for spending in critical social and growth-friendly areas, and strengthen debt sustainability; Strict control of budget execution, strong governance and transparency measures will help secure concessional financing and grants from international partners and encourage private investment.
A team of staff from the International Monetary Fund (IMF), led by Mr. José Gijon, held virtual meetings with the authorities, from September 28 to October 11, 2021, to conduct the first review of the personnel monitoring program (SMP). ) 9 months. . The review aims to assess efforts to establish a political track record for a possible Extended Credit Facility (ECF) arrangement in 2022.
At the end of the mission, Mr. Gijon made the following statement:
“The authorities and staff have discussed the policies and reforms that underpin the SMP. The structural benchmarks and most of the quantitative targets were met. Based on the overall performance of the implementation of the reform package, an agreement at the staff level was reached on the completion of this first review subject to the approval of IMF management.
“The authorities have made satisfactory progress in their reform program despite difficult socio-economic conditions made worse by the COVID-19 pandemic. In a context of very limited resources, they have managed to achieve relatively high levels of immunization compared to other countries in sub-Saharan Africa.
“Despite the persistence of the COVID-19 pandemic, the economic recovery continued in 2021 and the medium-term outlook remains strong. Inflation is expected to remain moderate and below the regional threshold of 3% of the West African Economic and Monetary Union (UEMOA). The budget deficit is expected to be contained at 5.2% of GDP in 2021, in line with program targets.
“The IMF team and the authorities have agreed on policy measures for the 2022 budget to ensure the key objectives of the program. These measures should reduce the projected budget deficit to around 4 ½% of GDP in 2022 and gradually converge towards the WAEMU regional deficit standard of 3% of GDP by 2025.
“The IMF team and the authorities also agreed that for the program to be successful, political priorities should focus on macro-fiscal sustainability. This will help create space for spending in critical emergency and growth areas such as health, education and physical infrastructure.
“The team recommends that the budget execution in 2021 and the design of the 2022 budget avoid any accumulation of arrears and the use of expensive non-concessional borrowing, in the context of a level of public debt already above the defined limit. in the UEMOA Convergence Pact. This implies focusing on revenue mobilization and expenditure containment measures, including more efficient management in order to contain any increase in the wage bill and the decline in interest payments on the debt (representing 80 and 20, respectively). , 5% of tax revenue in 2020). Attracting external subsidies will be essential to cover the current expenses of the government.
“In this context, the authorities of Guinea-Bissau have decided to use most of the recent allocation of SDR 27.2 million to Guinea-Bissau (approximately US $ 38.4 million) to strengthen the sustainability debt by repaying non-concessional debt, in particular to BOAD, and allocating the remaining amount to support COVID-related expenses, including vaccination and improvement of health services.
“The success of the IMF's program also hinges on meeting strong governance commitments aimed at improving transparency, accountability and efficiency in public finances. These measures aim to ensure that expenditure decisions that may affect the budget are exclusively authorized by the Ministry of Finance in accordance with the legislation in force. The objective of the other governance and transparency measures is that the budgetary allocations related to COVID-19 are spent in an appropriate manner and consistent with the commitments of the Rapid Credit Facility (FCR) disbursed in January 2021. This implies the achievement of '' an independent audit of crisis mitigation. expenses. The related report will be published with the regular expenditure reports, public contracts mentioning the successful companies and beneficial owners, as well as the ex post reports on the validation of the delivery of goods and services. The IMF supports the implementation of these measures by providing adequate capacity building.
“IMF staff will continue to support the authorities' efforts to reach out to other international partners to mobilize concessional financing for the reform program.
“The IMF team met with HE President Sissoco Embaló, Deputy Prime Minister Sambú, Minister of Finance Fadiá, National Director of BCEAO Embaló, President of the Court of Auditors Baldé and High Commissioner for COVID -19 Robalo. The team also met officials from the Ministries of Finance, Economy, Public Administration, the National Directorate of the BCEAO, the National Institute of Statistics, the FIU and other officials. In addition, the team met representatives of development partners.
"The team thanks the authorities for their openness and constructive discussions and looks forward to continuing a very close cooperation in the coming period."