(Ecofin Agency) - In June 2022, Cote d’Ivoire’s average annual inflation rate was 4.7%, according to the national institute of statistics. The rate, which is above the WAEMU convergence criteria threshold (3%), prompted the government to initiate measures to protect the population’s purchasing power.
Côte d’Ivoire will implement new measures to combat the rising cost of living. The measures were announced by President Alassane Ouattara (photo) in his address to the nation last Saturday (August 6), the eve of national independence day.
The measures include the extension of the list of housing allowance beneficiaries to include every civil servant and state personnel. The housing allowance has also been increased to XAF20,000 (US$31) monthly. Monthly transport and family allowance has also been increased from XOF2,500 (US$3.8) to XOF7,500 (US11.6) per child for every civil servant and state personnel while family allowance is increased to XOF5,000 (US$7.7) per child for state pensioners. A special end-of-year bonus has also been introduced. It represents one-third (1/3) of the basic monthly salary.
According to President Alassane Ouattara, the new measures will cost the government more than US$430 million yearly. The pensions and allowances will become effective this August while the special bonus will become effective in January 2023, he explained.
" In addition [...], in the coming weeks, a new general status governing public servants will be issued for a more efficient and modern public administration,” he added.
The president also announced upcoming discussions with the private sector to raise the guaranteed minimum income, in line with the 2022-2027 social truce between the government and trade unions.
The announcements come days after the government revealed the disbursement of more than US$16.5 million, between January and June 2022, from four Covid-19 funds to help the population cope with the effects of the pandemic.
The initiatives complement the subsidies and price capping measures (for some essential products) that have already cost the country US$650 million (according to the government). All those measures undoubtedly have an impact on Côte d'Ivoire's growth. As the IMF indicates, the country’s 2022 growth is expected to be lower compared to the previous years. Let’s note that since January 2022, the country’s inflation has been on the rise, reaching 4.7% in June. That rate exceeds the WAEMU convergence criteria threshold.