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IMF predicts 5.5% growth in Burkina Faso amid security efforts

Friday, 08 March 2024 20:43
IMF predicts 5.5% growth in Burkina Faso amid security efforts

(Ecofin Agency) - Burkina Faso's robust efforts to combat terrorism and secure its territories are expected to bear fruit, with the International Monetary Fund (IMF) projecting the country's GDP growth to reach 5.5% in 2024.

This optimistic economic forecast follows the government's implementation of significant reforms during its transitional period, as highlighted in an IMF statement released on Thursday, March 7, 2024. Martin Schindler, the IMF mission chief, remarked during his one-week visit to Ouagadougou for the first review of the Extended Credit Facility (ECF) agreement, "Efforts to combat terrorism and secure territories previously not under state control are expected to pay dividends soon." He further estimated that the real GDP growth of Burkina Faso would hit 5.5% this year, up from an estimated 3.6% in 2023.

Burkina Faso has been grappling with a security crisis spurred by terrorist groups in the northern region. Consequently, Captain Ibrahim Traoré, the Transitional President, has prioritized combating terrorism. In response, multiple initiatives have been launched, including the Patriotic Support Fund aimed at restoring and strengthening national security across the territory.

The state budget allocation for defense and security sectors has significantly increased, from 12.49% in 2016 to 28.42% in 2023, and is expected to rise to 29.49% in 2024, according to the Ministry of Finance.

Regarding the implementation of the ECF program, the IMF reported that Burkina Faso met all quantitative targets and most structural benchmarks. “We commend the authorities’ strong efforts in implementing critical macroeconomic adjustment and reforms in a highly challenging environment characterized by elevated borrowing costs, political uncertainty, fragile security conditions in some parts of the territory, and food insecurity,” said Schindler. He mentioned that the country's fiscal policy remains geared towards gradually converging to a 3% GDP deficit by 2027, with this year's deficit projected at about 5.5% of GDP.

Following this mission, the Burkina Faso authorities and IMF staff reached a preliminary agreement for a $32 million disbursement under the ECF. This four-year $302 million agreement, approved in September 2023, aims to help the country address prolonged balance of payments issues, achieve macroeconomic stabilization, mitigate the impact of current shocks on the most vulnerable, and reduce poverty.

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ECOFIN AGENCY offers a selection of articles translated from AGENCE ECOFIN. Founded in 2011, Agence Ecofin is a leader in Francophone Pan-African economic news, particularly in West and Central Africa. The agency publishes daily news on nine African economic sectors: Public Management, Finance, ICT, Agribusiness, Energy, Mining, Transport & Logistics, Communication, and Training.

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