ABIDJAN, Côte d’Ivoire, October 3, 2014/African Press Organization (APO)/ — A team from the International Monetary Fund (IMF) led by Mr. Michel Lazare visited Abidjan from September 17 – October 2, 2014, to conduct discussions on the sixth review of Côte d’Ivoire’s economic and financial program supported by an arrangement under the Extended Credit Facility (ECF).1
At the conclusion of the mission, Mr. Lazare, issued the following statement:
“Macroeconomic performance in the first half of 2014 was solid, with continued strong economic activity, particularly in the construction, public work and service sectors. Inflation remained subdued. Budget execution was also satisfactory with stronger-than-expected revenue performance and expenditures contained to budgeted amounts. As a result, the basic primary balance recorded a small surplus compared to a deficit projected under the program. All performance criteria and indicative targets for end-June 2014 under the ECF arrangement were met.
“Côte d’Ivoire successfully issued in July 2014 a Eurobond, raising US$ 750 million to help finance the budget, extend average debt maturities and repay some domestic debt.
“Macroeconomic prospects for the remainder of 2014 and 2015 are encouraging. Real Gross Domestic Product (GDP) growth is expected to reach about 8 percent in 2014 and 2015. The draft 2015 budget aims at supporting near and medium-term growth through a further expansion of public investment.
“Progress has been made in accelerating public procurement processes with a view to reducing sole-source contracting. The mission welcomes the authorities’ plans to set up a single Treasury account and further restructure public banks. The mission also welcomes the authorities’ intentions to reinforce the financial position of the energy sector and clear the stock of domestic arrears. Discussions shall continue in coming weeks on the financial modalities needed to achieve these objectives which are essential to keep public finances on a firm footing in the years ahead.
“The IMF team thanks the authorities for their hospitality and for the constructive discussions.”
The mission met and had constructive discussions with H.E. Dr. Alassane Ouattara, President of the Republic of Côte d’Ivoire; H.E. Mr. Daniel Kablan Duncan, Prime Minister and Minister of Economy, Finance and Budget; H.E. Ms. Niale Kaba, Minister at the Prime Minister’s Office in charge of Economy and Finance; H.E. Mr. Abdourahmane Cisse, Minister at the Prime Minister’s Office in charge of the Budget; H.E. Dr. Moussa Dosso, State Minister of Social Affairs, Employment and Vocational Training; H.E. Mr. Adama Toungara, Minister of Petroleum and Energy; H.E. Mr. Jean-Louis Billon, Minister of Trade, Handicraft and Small and Medium Size Businesses; H.E. Mr. Jean-Claude Brou, Minister of Industry and Mines; H. E. Patrick Achi, Minister of Economic Infrastructure; H.E. Cisse Ibrahima Bacongo, Minister of Civil Service and Administrative Reform; other senior government officials; including from the Banque des Etats d’Afrique de l’Ouest (BCEAO), as well as members of the business and donor communities.
1 The arrangement was approved by the IMF Executive Board on November 4, 2011 (see Press Release No. 11/399) in the amount of SDR 390.24 million (about US$616 million or CFAF 308 billion).
International Monetary Fund (IMF)