Country Economic Memorandum

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  • Publication
    Republic of Yemen: Unlocking the Potential for Economic Growth
    (World Bank, Washington, DC, 2015-10) World Bank
    Part one of the report provides an overview of the economy. It has one chapter (chapter one), which provides an overview of the country’s growth and macroeconomic performance and challenges and analyzes and emphasizes the limited dynamism of a rent- and hydrocarbon-cursed economy. Part II describes cross-cutting issues that constrain policy implementation, regardless of the sectors where they occur. In chapter two, the report draws on material outlined in the rest of the report to argue that the policy problems that undermine the country’s development can be linked directly to political distortions introduced by the fragmentation among the population and the elites. While the informal elite networks are able to block reform and aggressively continue to seek rents that might otherwise be recycled into development, the population is unable to exert its rights and hold the elites accountable. Chapter three analyzes the major impediments in the business environment. Through the analysis of the de jure legal and regulatory business environment as well as the enforcement of business regulations, the chapter identifies key legal and institutional changes that can help reduce the opportunities for rent seeking that favor well-connected businesses. Chapter four discusses the opportunities to maximize the benefits of the country’s human capital by enhancing the quality of worker skills, increasing women’s labor force participation, and facilitating the migration of Yemenis to work in the Gulf Cooperation Council (GCC) countries. To achieve this goal, the Republic of Yemen needs to enhance the quality of the education system, especially technical education and vocational training (TEVT), and respond to the existing demand for skilled workers. Chapter five explores the constraints to realizing the potential of agriculture. It argues that a key constraint on the sector is the capture of land and water by multiple elites motivated by short-term rent extraction, which prevents the efficient management of these assets and therefore undermines any possibility of sustainable development. The chapter also discusses other constraints and weaknesses affecting the sector and proposes legal and institutional changes that could help increase transparency in the management of the sector. Chapter six analyzes the prospects for growth in the oil and gas sector and discusses key governance reforms that would help reduce rent seeking in the sector.
  • Publication
    Uganda Country Economic Memorandum: Economic Diversification and Growth in the Era of Oil and Volatility
    (World Bank, Kampala, Uganda, 2015-06) World Bank; Government of Uganda
    The objective of the Ugandan government is to make Uganda an upper - middle income country within thirty years. Economic diversification is a key component of that strategy. The country economic memorandum (CEM) report discusses how the emergence of oil and mineral production can contribute to Uganda’s effort to promote economic diversification as a means to achieve sustainable and shared growth. Based on the lessons from international experience, the report outlines the elements of a development and diversification strategy, which the Ugandan government may wish to consider in the design of its macroeconomic, fiscal, and sectoral development policies. It then focuses on the set of policies required to maximize the benefits of a diversification strategy in an oil-producing country. Finally it describes a series of actions which the government should plan, and carry out to deal with a number of specific implementation issues. The first part of the report focuses on the importance of economic diversification for Uganda and on the prospects and challenges of oil and mineral development. It addresses the following three issues: (a) why diversification is important for economic development?; (b) where Uganda stands in that area and why it should give a new impetus to its diversification strategy?; and (c) what are the prospects, possible impact, and challenges associated to oil and mining development for Uganda’s economy?
  • Publication
    Guinea-Bissau Country Economic Memorandum : Terra Ranca! A Fresh Start
    (Washington, DC, 2015-01-12) World Bank
    After decades of turmoil and instability, a period of calm and progress evolved in Guinea-Bissau in 2009. A military coup in April 2012 interrupted it. A fresh start is needed to alter the dynamics that kept Guinea-Bissau poor. In 2013, Gross National Income per capita was US$590. Average economic growth barely kept pace with population growth. In 2010, poverty at the national poverty line of US$2 a day was 70 percent; extreme poverty at US$1 a day was 33 percent. These numbers have increased from their 2002 levels and they are estimated to have increased further since 2010. It is time to make a fresh start and turn the page on anemic growth and poverty. Guinea-Bissau s elections of May and June 2014 are described by many observers as the freest and fairest in the country s history. Voter registration and turnout were at record-levels. The conditions for progress and stability are favorable. Guinea-Bissau is a rural economy, almost entirely dependent on a single cash crop: cashew. It is the main source of income for most of the country s poor. Cashew nuts are Guinea-Bissau s main export, accounting for 85 to 90 percent of the country s total exports. The balance of payments is dominated by cashew, on the export side, and food and fuel, among imports. The economy is open, with exports and imports by land and sea amounting to more than 70 percent of GDP. Shocks to cashew, rice and oil prices have a considerable effect on the current account balance. Official Development Assistance (ODA) makes a critical contribution to supporting the state budget. In 2011, Guinea-Bissau ranked 20th among the world s most aid dependent countries. Recently, policy mistakes aggravated an already dire situation. However, the 2014 cashew campaign was been better than the 2013 campaign, and the prospects for a pick-up in growth have improved.
  • Publication
    Guinea-Bissau Country Economic Memorandum : Terra Ranca! A Fresh Start, Summary
    (Washington, DC, 2015-01-12) World Bank
    After decades of turmoil and instability, a period of calm and progress evolved in Guinea-Bissau in 2009. A military coup in April 2012 interrupted it. A fresh start is needed to alter the dynamics that kept Guinea-Bissau poor. In 2013, Gross National Income per capita was US$590. Average economic growth barely kept pace with population growth. In 2010, poverty at the national poverty line of US$2 a day was 70 percent; extreme poverty at US$1 a day was 33 percent. These numbers have increased from their 2002 levels and they are estimated to have increased further since 2010. It is time to make a fresh start and turn the page on anemic growth and poverty. Guinea-Bissau s elections of May and June 2014 are described by many observers as the freest and fairest in the country s history. Voter registration and turnout were at record-levels. The conditions for progress and stability are favorable. Guinea-Bissau is a rural economy, almost entirely dependent on a single cash crop: cashew. It is the main source of income for most of the country s poor. Cashew nuts are Guinea-Bissau s main export, accounting for 85 to 90 percent of the country s total exports. The balance of payments is dominated by cashew, on the export side, and food and fuel, among imports. The economy is open, with exports and imports by land and sea amounting to more than 70 percent of GDP. Shocks to cashew, rice and oil prices have a considerable effect on the current account balance. Official Development Assistance (ODA) makes a critical contribution to supporting the state budget. In 2011, Guinea-Bissau ranked 20th among the world s most aid dependent countries. Recently, policy mistakes aggravated an already dire situation. However, the 2014 cashew campaign was been better than the 2013 campaign, and the prospects for a pick-up in growth have improved.
  • Publication
    Iraq: Diversified Development in a Resource-Rich Fragile State
    (Washington, DC, 2015) World Bank
    More than 10 years after the overthrow of Saddam, the impatience of the Iraqi people and government for transformation of their economy to advance shared prosperity is growing. The government has expressed the desire for the World Bank Group to enhance its role in this transformation. This note proposes two pillars for the government to consider as central to the objective of diversification: enabling transformative investments and a comprehensive financing framework aligned with these investments. The obstacles to this approach are considerable, so a pre-requisite is high level government ownership and an implementing structure to match. A proposed institutional structure to embody this is outlined.
  • Publication
    Turkey’s Transitions : Integration, Inclusion, Institutions
    (Washington, DC, 2014-12-01) World Bank
    Turkey has always been a country of strategic significance. Its geographic position as a bridge between East and West, its long and unique history of relations with the European Union (EU), and the particular rout the Republic of Turkey chose towards modernization after its foundation in 1923 have attracted the attention of historian and political scientists a like. More recently, Turkey’s economic success has become a source of inspiration for a number of developing countries, particularly – but no only – in the Muslim world. Over the last two years, however, questions have emerged over the lessons to be drawn from Turkey’s experience. Economic growth has come down to a modest 3-4% range - from well over 5% during 2002-2011 - and risks related to the country’s large external financing needs have not been banished. Critics have raised questions over the strength of Turkey’s legal and economic institutions, and economists are concerned that Turkey may remain ‘trapped’ in its current middle income status. This publication is addressed to policy makers both from other emerging markets and from Turkey itself. To the former, if offers lessons in how Turkey progressed towards international integration and increased social inclusion. To the latter, it offers a narrative of the country’s achievements and remaining challenges that may help define the reform agenda going forward.
  • Publication
    Poland : Saving for Growth and Prosperous Aging
    (Washington, DC, 2014-06) World Bank
    The recent financial crisis has emphasized the role of national saving for rising economic growth and promoting development. Since the crisis began, global markets have experienced deteriorating public finances, household deleveraging, differing speeds of recovery, and eroding confidence in financial systems, all of which have deterred long-term investments. In the context of this new growth agenda, the present report analyzes the trends and determinants of domestic saving in Poland and provides policy options for increasing saving, particularly over the long term. Improved national saving provides funding for a country to take advantage of more investment opportunities. From the microeconomic perspective, increasing national saving will support incomes in an aging society, helping address the issue of the adequacy of retirement incomes. However, increasing national saving involves also some costs, which should be carefully balanced against the potential benefits. In this context, the report is divided into seven chapters. Chapter one gives introduction. Chapter two presents recent trends and determinants of growth in Poland, as well as challenges for its long-term prospects. Chapter three discusses the determinants of and influences on the level of private saving. Chapter four complements this discussion by portraying the government's role in determining the level of saving in the economy. Chapter five discusses the importance of saving for the financial sector, its ability to promote saving, and instruments that may be promoted to meet the needs of Polish savers. Chapter six quantifies the impact of potential changes to the main determinants of saving on performance of saving and economic growth in Poland. Finally, chapter seven focuses on policy analysis.
  • Publication
    Trading Up to High Income : Turkey Country Economic Memorandum
    (Washington, DC, 2014-05-05) World Bank
    Turkish exporters substantially broadened market reach, exporting to 137 countries at present, up from 90 in 2000. Turkey's global market share rose substantially from 0.55 percent of global imports in 2002 to 0.82 percent in 2012. Turkey aims to become one of the ten largest economies in the world by 2023, with per-capita gross domestic product (GDP) rising to United States (U.S.) $25,000 and exports to U.S. 500 billion dollars. This report focuses on Turkey's competitiveness from the supply side, but it is important to note that ensuring a more balanced mix of financing for the required investment through measures to boost domestic savings is equally important if Turkey's progress is to be sustained. Achieving Turkey's export target is possible and it will likely require a larger global market share. The relatively low level of foreign direct investment (FDI) in Turkish manufacturing has been a constraint to export growth and quality improvements. Raising export growth to levels that help meet Turkey's development goals will require a policy agenda that targets sustained further improvements in Turkey's physical, human, and institutional capital. This report prioritizes broader policies that are fundamental for Turkey to export its way out of middle-income. Chief among these are policies that: (i) link the country further with international markets, including by helping bring larger inflows of FDI, particularly into the manufacturing sector; (ii) promote innovation, including by encouraging a large role for private companies in research and development (R and D); (iii) upgrade the skills both of the existing work force and new entrants; and (iv) improve access to finance, particularly long-term, with a view to unlock the potential of the dynamic small and medium enterprise (SME) sector.
  • Publication
    Pakistan : Finding the Path to Job-Enhancing Growth
    (Islamabad: World Bank, 2013-08) World Bank
    Pakistan's rebound from the global financial crisis has been slow and fragile, and unless the economy changes course swiftly, it could face its second balance of payments crisis in five years. Its recovery from the 2008-09 global financial crisis has been the weakest in South Asia, with a double dip pattern. This report identifies conditions for a sustainable job-enhancing growth agenda for Pakistan. Policy must target both goals as they are closely intertwined. Higher growth rates can be achieved through productivity improvements (technology, innovation, better economic governance), but also from higher output extracted from factors-physical capital, labor, human capital, and land. This report considers whether Pakistan should pursue historical growth of 4.3 percent a year, supported by piecemeal structural reforms leading to partial and unsatisfactory outcomes-or rapid growth of 7 percent, requiring comprehensive big-bang reforms. The report is organized around three major themes: (i) the stylized facts, what are the pluses and minuses of Pakistan's patterns of growth and job creation? (ii) the diagnostics, what is holding back Pakistan's growth? And (iii) the transformational agenda, what are the core ingredients of job-enhancing growth? And how can analysis of the political economy identify policy tradeoffs?
  • Publication
    Georgia Sustaining Rapid Economic Growth : Country Economic Memorandum
    (Washington, DC, 2013-07) World Bank
    Sustaining rapid economic growth for reduced poverty and shared prosperity over the next decade and beyond in Georgia is an important goal and a key challenge for the authorities. While the record of growth over the last decade has been strong, the forces that drove this growth are unlikely to be sustained in the coming years. Sustaining strong growth in Georgia going forward will require new policies that help support both high investment financed increasingly from domestic sources as well as sustained rapid productivity growth in the tradable sectors. Ensuring a more sustainable source of financing for investment and accumulation will require raising low rates of national savings in Georgia. Sustaining rapid productivity growth of tradables will require reforms to address firm level constraints to improved allocative efficiency and productivity over the firm lifecycle. Supporting productivity growth will also require improved skills and deployment of workers that will also support employment generation and more inclusive growth going forward. Expanding productivity and growth of exports will require ensuring price competitiveness, enhancing market access, and improving logistics infrastructure. This report is structured in five chapters. Chapter one looks at the sources and prospects for growth, the record on national savings, and the prospects for raising savings. Chapter two is a diagnostic of the dynamics of firm-level productivity growth and the policies that may be constraining improved allocative efficiency and lifecycle productivity. Chapter three looks at employment and skills to assess whether Georgia's labor resources are adequately deployed. Chapter four is a diagnostic of exports and international trade and the policies that may be holding back growth and productivity of the export and tradable sectors in particular. Two appendices on the apparel and wine industries provide additional insight into policies to support export growth.