W/Bank Optimistic of Africa’s Economic Growth
Senior officials of the Africa Section of the World Bank in Washington DC have painted a positive picture of economic growth in Africa in the year 2018, adding that although economic growth has rebounding at 3.1% with positive per capital growth, it is not fast enough compared to the 2016 figure, hence the need to put in place a certain number of measures.The observation was made by officials of the bank in Washington, during the launching of the 17th edition of the Africa Pulse Relevant to the African Economy, in a video link interface program with African journalists from several African countries in Africa on the one hand, and World Bank officials in Washington headquarters on the other hand, at a program held at the Liberia offices of the World Bank in Monrovia on April 18, 2018.
To have a positive reverse of the trend, senior officials of the Bank want African governments should pay more attention to curtailing the rising public debts and the leverage of innovation such as providing access to affordable and reliable electricity. One official added that African still have 6 of the world’s fastest growing economies such as the Ivory Coast, Senegal and Nigeria, Kenya, Rwanda and Tanzania.
“We need to speed up fiscal adjustment and growth reforms and that our regulatory frameworks should be conducive to private sector reforms. We need to pay attention to rising debts as many African countries are not borrowing responsibly,” one official said.
Officials of the world bank in Washington DC also recommended 3 things that African governments should do to improve economic growth, namely: realize that growth is rebounding but not fast, secondly to pay attention to rising debts, and thirdly to embrace leverage and innovation especially in regulatory and governance frameworks.
The Bank equally recommended that African governments should look at improving on domestic resource mobilization, take note of the need for efficiency and deepening structural reforms, handle an efficient debt management programs and policies. It was observed that despite the low GDP rates African governments have increased their debts.
The composition of debts have over the years changed from traditional to modernization regimes, which gives vulnerability to exchange rates depreciation and market rate systems. African countries should be focusing in structural adjustments”, it was observed.
Africa has the lowest access to electricity which is a necessary aspect of innovation and solution to economic growth. In West Africa there has been a remarkable improvement in the provision of electricity in the Ivory Coast, Senegal and Nigeria while challenges remain in Ghana’s provision of electricity.
Meanwhile Kenya, Rwanda and Tanzania as well as Ethiopia have made significant strides in improving on the power grids. World bank has financed a pilot project in Kenya for the provision of solar powered electricity to schools and underprivileged areas of the country.
It has been realized that many African countries need to expand access to affordable electricity and this is why the West African Power Project across borders have been launched. A holistic investment and advancement of solar power, renewable energy sources for household works such as charging electrical appliances, mini and micro hydro electrical grids are ways of increasing technology in electricity.
The program was followed by a questions and answer session with each participating country asking one question. (Writes JLM).