Private Sector Development, Privatization, and Industrial Policy

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  • Publication
    Creating Markets in Eswatini : Strengthening the Private Sector to Grow Export Markets and Create Jobs - Country Private Sector Diagnostic
    (Washington, DC, 2022-09) International Finance Corporation
    Eswatini is facing multiple challenges. It was already experiencing weak economic growth before the COVID-19 pandemic, a reflection of longstanding, deeply rooted issues such as fiscal unsustainability, declining private investment, weakening productivity and competitiveness, and falling export diversification and complexity, compounded by the impact of climate shocks. It shifted from a private investment–led higher-growth model to a government spending–led lower-growth model after the end of apartheid in South Africa. With weak investment in productive sectors, Eswatini’s job market failed to keep pace with an expanding, younger labor force, leading to a large informal sector. Eswatini’s public sector–driven growth model is unsustainable under current fiscally constrained conditions, and there is a need to reduce and reprioritize public spending. An assessment of existing sectoral data and consultations with Eswatini’s private sector and policy makers suggest that four sectors can help drive the export-led private sector growth model. To return to an export-led growth model, Eswatini needs to increase export competitiveness by advancing regulatory reforms and improvements in trade logistics that include regional collaboration to address trade facilitation constraints. Finally, given the country’s vulnerability to climate risks, policies to foster economic resilience amid extreme weather events (mainly droughts that affect agriculture) and improve disaster preparedness need to be pursued. The private sector must adapt to this challenge and work with the government to improve climate resilience.
  • Publication
    Creating Markets In Namibia : Creating Resilient and Inclusive Markets - Country Private Sector Diagnostic
    (Washington, DC, 2022-07) International Finance Corporation
    Since achieving independence in 1990, Namibia’s remarkable growth has been fueled by foreign direct investment and enabled by prudent economic management. Since 2016, however, growth has declined steadily and the economy fell into recession, exposing the vulnerability of Namibia’s economic growth model to external and climate shocks. These challenges were exacerbated by the Coronavirus (COVID-19) pandemic, an economic slowdown in neighboring South Africa, worsening terms of trade on the back of declining global demand and commodity prices, a decline in Southern African Customs Union (SACU) revenues, and the effects of crippling droughts on agricultural and industrial production. Namibia has very high levels of poverty and inequality, which are largely driven by high levels of unemployment. The primary objective of this Country Private Sector Diagnostic (CPSD) is to identify near and medium-term reform opportunities to revitalize the private sector and help reposition Namibia’s growth on a green, resilient, and inclusive trajectory. This CPSD explores priority reform opportunities to address five cross-cutting bottlenecks: (1) enhancing the role and performance of the state-owned enterprise (SOE) sector through a more effective competition policy environment; (2) strengthening implementation of the public-private partnership (PPP) framework to expand private investments, especially in infrastructure; (3) leveraging the potential for digital transformation of the economy; (4) addressing inefficiencies in logistics and trade facilitation; and (5) tapping opportunities in the water sector for green and resilient growth. The diagnostic then looks in depth at three sectors prioritized by the Namibian government - renewable energy, climate-smart agribusiness, and housing, and provides recommendations for reducing sector-specific bottlenecks to stimulate growth potential.
  • Publication
    Creating Markets in Mali: Mobilizing the Private Sector for Economic Resilience and Recovery - Country Private Sector Diagnostic
    (World Bank, Washington, DC, 2022-04) International Finance Corporation
    Until the onset of the coronavirus disease 2019 (SARS-CoV2) COVID-19 pandemic and despite the deteriorating security situation, Mali’s economic growth averaged five percent since 2014, on par with its long-term potential. Mali’s fragile state status has also taken a toll on economic activity and social welfare by reducing access to markets, threatening food security, and degrading human capital indicators. With an increasing debt burden resulting in limited fiscal space to address persistent security risks and to combat the COVID-19 pandemic, the government of Mali is compelled to refocus the role of the state and unleash the potential of the private sector to boost productivity growth, to diversify the economy away from a narrow base, and to ensure inclusive economic and social welfare for all Malians. The growth model will be readdressed around energizing investment, creating resilient markets, and building back better for a more resilient recovery via (a) improving the business environment; (b) crowding-in private participation in the delivery of infrastructure and certain public services; (c) ensuring that remaining state-owned enterprises and private firms compete on equal terms - that is, upholding competitive neutrality principles; (d) expanding public-private partnerships in key sectors, through transparent and competitive procurement; and (e) leveraging digital solutions by further enhancing digital infrastructure that would, in turn, increase the uptake of digital financial services and digital platforms for key sectors of the economy, such as agriculture, and digitize government services (e-government).
  • Publication
    Creating Markets in Madagascar: For Inclusive Growth - Country Private Sector Diagnostic
    (World Bank, Washington, DC, 2021-12) International Finance Corporation
    The report is organized as follows: the first part gives an overview of recent economic and private sector trends, followed by an in-depth review of the cross-cutting constraints that affect private sector participation. The CPSD recommends putting a special focus on resolving three types of constraints: (a) deep-rooted governance issues (especially as they relate to policy unpredictability, red tape, and the uneven playing field in key sectors of the economy); (b) infrastructure bottlenecks, focusing on transport connectivity and energy; and (c) limited and poorly functioning factor markets for human capital, access to finance, and land. The second part lays out opportunities and policy options to strengthen competitiveness in agribusiness, apparel, and tourism. The three sectors reviewed are deemed to hold a high potential for job creation and growth and have been prioritized by the PEM and by the private sector stakeholders and development partners consulted for the report. The review puts a lens on addressing gender gaps, policies to promote sustainability, and opportunities to increase the impact of information and communication technology (ICT) as an enabler for development, where relevant.
  • Publication
    Creating Markets in Mozambique: A study conducted by the World Bank Group in partnership with SIDA - Country Private Sector Diagnostic
    (World Bank, Washington, DC, 2021-06) International Finance Corporation
    The Country Private Sector Diagnostic (CPSD) is a joint IFC-World Bank diagnostic that aims to make concrete recommendations for crowding-in private sector investment and financing in client countries. The CPSD analyzes the country context, including the state of the private sector, and identifies cross-cutting as well as sector-specific opportunities and constraints. The analysis presented in the Mozambique CPSD will feed into various upcoming World Bank Group (WBG) engagement reports for the country, including the IFC country strategy and the WBG Systematic Country Diagnostic (SCD). Similarly, it is expected that the CPSD will be of interest to the government, the private sector, and other development partners. Policy makers in Mozambique can take advantage of the CPSD to undertake reforms for improving the opportunities for private sector investment in priority economic sectors. The CPSD seeks to provide answers to the main development questions for private sector development in Mozambique, including which traded sectors, beyond extractives, have the most potential to drive growth and productive employment, and what reforms are needed to support this change.
  • Publication
    Benchmarking Madagascar’s Free Zone Competitiveness
    (World Bank, Washington, DC, 2020-06-17) World Bank
    The Government of Mauritius is implementing the Mauritius Africa Strategy, which is focused on positioning Mauritius as a bridge for investment and trade in order to open new markets in Sub-Saharan Africa (SSA). A cornerstone of this strategy is sharing the successful experience of Mauritius in providing an attractive business environment bundled with good infrastructure and services in order to accelerate investments in trade, services and manufacturing in SSA countries. This technical note is in response to a request from both the MAF and Government of Mauritius and the EDBM and GoM for: i) an update of the current status of the SEZ regime in Madagascar i.e. policy, legal, regulatory and institutional framework and current proposals being considered by the GoM as well as opportunities for improvement, ii) benchmarking Madagascar’s main competitors in the global textile and apparel markets (such as Bangladesh, Ethiopia and Kenya) and comparing their SEZ regimes for textile and garment zones to identify competitiveness strengths and weaknesses and lessons learned, and iii) outline opportunities for successful development of the proposed zone for consideration by both the GoM and the MAF and Government of Mauritius.
  • Publication
    The Untapped Potential of Mauritania’s Entrepreneurial Ecosystem: Lessons from the Entrepreneur's Marathon
    (World Bank, Washington, DC, 2019-08) World Bank Group
    In Mauritania – a country dominated by the Sahara Desert and defined by tradition – players from across society are coming together to encourage innovation and set a new path for the country's development. From the public sector to local and international businesses, as well as the donor community, entrepreneurship is beginning to emerge as a crucial element in any strategy to address Mauritania's greatest challenges: socio-economic inclusion, poverty reduction, youth employment, economic diversification and climate change. Since independence, the country has pursued a traditional state-driven model that has failed to catalyze the necessary investments and private sector-driven solutions to these problems. Due to structural limitations of competition in the economy, the country's private sector is a concentration of large business groups that dominate the trade, banking and procurement markets. New entrants are crowded out, with formal micro, small and medium enterprises (MSMEs) in Mauritania numbering a mere 3,000. Informal self-employment and micro-businesses in agriculture, livestock and commerce currently make up the vast majority of jobs among the poorest households in Mauritania. Smaller independent firms continue to encounter obstacles, discouraging the emergence of local suppliers and directly impacting international investors who face higher operating costs. Poor quality in education and professional training reinforce these challenges, limiting job opportunities even in expanding sectors in the economy. A lack of expertise and practical skills are compounded by complex labor regulations, making it even harder for businesses to recruit and retain young job-seeking Mauritanians.
  • Publication
    Creating Markets in Kenya: Unleashing Private Sector Dynamism to Achieve Full Potential
    (International Finance Corporation, Washington, DC, 2019-07-31) International Finance Corporation
    Kenya has the opportunities and resources to stimulate sustainable economic growth and development, but its potential has been constrained by under-investment and low firm-level productivity. Altogether, its development has not been sufficiently sustainable or equitable to transform the lives of ordinary citizens. Poverty remains high, with thirty-six percent of Kenyans living under the national poverty line, whereas the richest ten percent of the population receive forty percent of the nation’s income. This country private sector diagnostic (CPSD) sheds light on how the private sector can more effectively contribute to advancing the country’s developmental goals. Applying a sectoral lens, it puts forward operational recommendations highlighting strategic entry points for diversification and growth and addresses key constraints to private sector engagement. It also seeks to inform World Bank and IFC strategies, paving the way for joint programming to create markets and unlock private sector potential.
  • Publication
    Creating Markets in Ethiopia: Sustaining Progress Towards Industrialization
    (International Finance Corporation, Washington, DC, 2019-03-20) World Bank; International Finance Corporation
    Ethiopia has made impressive strides along its developmental path. Job creation is now the critical development challenge, raising the importance of the private sector agenda. After more than a decade of sustained public sector-led growth, the government is revising its growth strategy to allow for a much greater role for the private sector in driving growth and job creation. Broadening the base for job creation beyond light manufacturing toward a wider range of high productivity agricultural and services activities will help to overcome the uneven spatial distribution of manufacturing jobs across the country. Ethiopia has a number of advantages that it can leverage to attract the investment needed for job creation. These include rapidly improving transport and energy infrastructure, low labor costs, a large and growing domestic market, cheap power, an ideal climate, and preferential market access to the European Union, the United States, and other major markets. The purpose of the Ethiopia country private sector diagnostic (CPSD) is to support the transition to a private sector- driven growth model that advances the country’s development objectives and, in particular, delivers the necessary jobs. It identifies investment opportunities that can materialize in the short term, and the reforms that are needed to enable these opportunities to emerge. It also discusses how specific actions by the public sector, in collaboration with the private sector, in filling gaps in public investment, reforming business regulations and trade policy, addressing market failures, and enhancing the efficiency of key backbone services and sectors, while tackling gender inequalities, can fully unleash the potential of private sector investment.
  • Publication
    Creating Markets in Rwanda: Transforming for the Jobs of Tomorrow
    (International Finance Corporation, Washington, DC, 2019-03) International Finance Corporation
    Rwanda has made unsurmountable strides along its development path. Rwanda has placed among the world’s fastest-growing economies, climbing the development ladder from second-poorest in the world in 1994 to sit ahead of nineteen other countries. Today, job creation lies at the heart of Rwanda’s development challenge. The government of Rwanda (GoR) recognizes the urgency of creating new jobs. The new thirty-year Vision for the period up to 2050, which is currently being finalized, elaborates the country’s long-term development goals. The core of transformation for prosperity is developing high-value and competitive sectors, to transition the population and economy from subsistence agriculture toward industry and high-skilled services. The purpose of the Rwanda country privates sector diagnostic (CPSD) is to identify market opportunities and constraints in sectors that advance the country’s development objectives. By assessing the landscape of private sector investment in the country, the CPSD identifies specific constraints to private sector investment and productivity growth, concrete opportunities that could materialize in the short term, and the reforms that will enable this materialization. It then discusses how specific actions by the public sector in collaboration with the private sector by filling gaps in public investment, reforming regulations, and addressing market failures could unleash sectors’ private investment potential.