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Publication(World Bank, Washington, DC, 2021-11-10) World BankGhana has been a rising growth star and a beacon of hope in West Africa. Strong economic growth over the past two decades led to a near doubling of GDP per capita, lifting the country through the threshold for middle-income status in 2011. GDP per capita grew by an average of 3 percent per year over the past two decades, putting Ghana in the top ten fastest growing countries in Sub-Saharan Africa (SSA). A rising tide has tended to lift all boats. Poverty rates more than halved between 1998 and 2016, and the extreme poverty rate declined from 36.0 percent in 1991 to 8.2 percent in 2016. The net primary school enrollment rate rose from 62.5 percent in 2000 to 86.0 percent in 2019. This progress has motivated the government’s goal to lift the country to high-income status by 2057. The focus of this Country Economic Memorandum (CEM) is to review options for Ghana to create enough higher quality jobs through economic transformation. Economic transformation, or inclusive productivity growth, occurs as people and resources shift from lower to higher productivity activities. It raises household incomes and living standards, thereby lifting people out of poverty. It can be achieved through the movement of workers and other resources between firms and sectors, or through workers staying within existing firms that benefit from within-firm productivity growth by adopting better technologies and capabilities.
Lake Chad Regional Economic Memorandum: Technical Paper 4. Infrastructure and Structural Change in the Lake Chad Region(World Bank, Washington, DC, 2021-11-09) Lebrand, MathildThis paper focuses on the impact of infrastructure on economic development for the countries around the Lake Chad area, an economically- and socially-integrated area in north-west Africa that has development potential, but which has been undermined by multiple and interrelated drivers of fragility, conflict, and violence. The Lake Chad region comprises a set of administrative areas across Cameroon, Chad, Niger, and Nigeria that surround Lake Chad, with an estimated 17 million to 19 million people, who are primarily involved in agriculture and fishing activities. The region has one of the largest concentrations of extreme poverty in Sub-Saharan Africa and the world and lags in human development outcomes and access to key public services. The paper analyzes the impact of infrastructure in Cameroon, Chad and Nigeria, from a national and regional perspective, and with a particular focus on the Lake Chad area. The paper is structured as follows. Section two presents the data. Section three presents the empirical strategy and results. Section four develops a spatial general-equilibrium model to produce counterfactuals for more regional integration. Section five concludes.
Publication(World Bank, Washington, DC, 2021-06-21) Kelly, Timothy ; Dunand, EricThis paper follows the World Bank Group’s approach to Jobs and Economic Transformation (JET) which identifies economic transformation as key to creating more and better jobs. It builds on the Digital Economy for Africa (DE4A) approach to developing a digital economy to create the jobs of the future, which is aligned with the African Union’s Digital Transformation Strategy, 2020-2030. Helping countries build new digital This section is prepared in the context of Covid-19 pandemic that threatens decades of hard-won development gains and is likely to have triggered the deepest global recession since the World War II. The economic crisis is generating massive unemployment, particularly affecting the poor and vulnerable, and highlights the importance of jobs and economic transformation. The HoA countries already faced the challenge of a population growth at a rate around 3% preinfrastructure, and to develop regulations, skills and platforms that are compatible with neighboring countries should enable them to develop a larger and more efficient digital market that can facilitate economic transformation by enabling technological leapfrogging, and the creation of new jobs in old and new sectors. New forms of market connectivity can bring opportunities for new services and regional economic development in the Horn of Africa.
Publication(World Bank, Washington, DC, 2020-05-04) World BankIraq, once again, is facing a combination of acute shocks which the country is ill-prepared tomanage. The collapse in oil prices has considerably reduced budgetary revenues and reversed the fiscal surpluses accumulated since 2018. COVID-19, and the lockdown measures needed to contain the pandemic have dealt a severe blow to economic activities especially the services sectors like transport, trade, banking and religious tourism, which constitute around half of the non-oil economy. The growing discontent over poor service delivery, rising corruption, and lack of jobs persists and is coupled with political impasse over the formation of a new government. Iraq's pre-existing conditions going into this crisis limit its ability to manage and mitigate the socio-economic impact. A large dependency on oil revenues coupled with built-up budget rigiditieslimit Iraq's fiscal space to respond to the COVID-19 outbreak and offer a stimulus package to re-start the economy. An undiversified economy, highly dependent on oil outcomes, as well as large presence of the state in economic and commercial activities, make it hard to create the needed private sector jobs for a predominantly young population. Furthermore, rampant corruption and weak governance and service delivery fueled large scale protests across the country calling for better public service delivery and jobs. As a result, all signs indicate that this multifaceted crisis will have a protracted impact. The outlook for Iraq, which was already negative prior to the COVID-19 shock, has markedly worsened since. Near-term economic growth will be subdued by low oil prices, a new OPEC agreement that has reduced oil production quotas, and unfavorable global and domestic conditions including disruptions from COVID-19 spread. As a result, the economy is projected to contract by 9.7 percent in 2020, down from a real GDP growth of 4.4 percent in 2019, with both oil and non-oil sectors contracting by 13 and 4.4 percent respectively. This special focus on digital economy (DE) highlights the importance of digital transformation for Iraq and the urgency behind it. Iraq's economic condition was gradually improving following the deep economic strains of the last three years. However, the recent protests and unrest highlight the continued fragility of the country and the high priority of improving economic opportunities, particularly for youth. Leveraging the DE will help Iraq address some of its citizens' concerns as well as accelerate the achievement of its development objectives.