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IMF Executive Board Completes Sixth Review under the ECF Arrangement for Côte d’Ivoire, Approves US$94.7 Million Disbursement, and Augments Access and Extends the Arrangement

Author(s):
International Monetary Fund. African Dept.
Published Date:
December 2014
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The Executive Board of the International Monetary Fund (IMF) today completed the sixth review of Côte d’Ivoire’s performance under an economic program supported by an Extended Credit Facility (ECF) arrangement. The decision enables the disbursement of SDR 65.04 million (about US$94.7 million, 20 percent of quota), bringing total disbursements under the arrangement to SDR 422.76 million (about US$615.9 million, 130 percent of quota). In completing the review, the Executive Board granted a waiver of the non-observance of the continuous performance criterion on contracting or guaranteeing of new non-concessional external debt.

In addition, the Executive Board approved a twelve-month extension and augmentation of access under the arrangement of SDR 130.08 million (about $189.5 million, 40 percent of quota), including SDR 32.52 million (about $47.4 million, 10 percent of quota) to meet additional balance of payment needs generated by the Ebola prevention plan.

The Executive Board approved the ECF arrangement for Côte d’Ivoire on November 4, 2011 (see Press Release No. 11/399).

Following the Executive Board’s discussion on Côte d’Ivoire, Mr. Shinohara, Deputy Managing Director and Acting Chair, made the following statement:

“Recent macroeconomic performance in Côte d’Ivoire has been strong. Growth performance since 2012 has been among the highest in Sub-Saharan Africa and per capita income has increased by almost 20 percent. High public investment has supported growth and improved access to public services. Inflation remains moderate. Program performance under the ECF arrangement has been strong, which was reflected in Côte d’Ivoire’s improved ranking in the 2015 Doing Business survey, the favorable debut 2014 sovereign bond ratings, and the low yield of the July 2014 Eurobond. Continued commitment to prudent policies and structural reforms will be necessary to increase private sector activity and to sustain high growth to achieve the ambitious goals set in the National Development Plan. A cautious approach to debt accumulation of non-concessional debt and further strengthening of debt management will be critical to maintain macroeconomic stability.

“The near-term macroeconomic outlook remains positive, driven by continued high public investment and rising private investment. The draft budget for 2015, which includes, in particular, a provision for Ebola prevention is appropriately marked by a limited expansion of the overall fiscal deficit to accommodate growth-friendly investment in key economically viable infrastructure projects. Establishing a Treasury single account will be important going forward. To create fiscal space needed for infrastructure and social spending, priority should be given to mobilizing tax and customs revenues and eliminating exemptions.

“The authorities are taking steps to regularize domestic arrears and to pay delayed budget subsidies to the electricity sector, while also adopting additional measures to improve the financial situation of the energy sector over the medium term. Further structural reforms are necessary to improve the business climate and governance to promote private sector investment and reduce the reliance of the growth strategy on the public sector.”

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