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Friday, 25 March 2011

Ivory Coast crisis threatens regional economy

The economic recovery in West Africa is under threat from the crisis in Ivory Coast, according to the IMF. In an analysis of the region, the IMF expresses concern that events in Ivory Coast could have a negative impact on the economies of other member states in the Economic Community of West African States (ECOWAS: Benin, Burkina Faso, Guinea Bissau, Mail, Niger, Senegal and Togo). All ECOWAS members appear to have recovered their level of growth to that of before the global economic crisis. Furthermore, the IMF predicts that economic activity in the region will reach 4.5 percent this year, compared with 4 percent in 2010 and 3 percent in 2009. Since the sudden hike in food and energy prices in 2007-08, successful reflationary policies, satisfactory agricultural production and the resurgence of activity in Guinea Bissau and Togo, the region had seemed to be on the road to economic recovery. And yet the Ivorian crisis threatens to overturn all these gains. A fall in production in Ivory Coast to the level of 2000 would reduce regional growth to less than 3 percent, which would lead to a reduction in per capita income and thus increase poverty.

Source: Radio France Internationale