Engagement with the International Monetary Fund (IMF) through providing technical assistance would help establish growth-friendly policies for Sub-Saharan Africa, an official has said.
BY TATIRA ZWINOIRA
Speaking at an IMF meeting recently in Washington DC, South African Finance minister Pravin Gordhan made the remarks on behalf of sub-Saharan African countries that include Angola, Botswana, Burundi, Eritrea, Ethiopia, Gambia, Kenya, Lesotho, Liberia, Malawi, Mozambique, Namibia, Nigeria, Sierra Leone, Somalia, South Africa, South Sudan, Sudan, Swaziland, Tanzania, Uganda, Zambia and Zimbabwe.
“The engagement with the Fund will help in establishing a growth-friendly policy environment and rebuilding of policy buffers. As economies in the region evolve to forward-looking monetary policy frameworks we urge the Fund to provide technical assistance to support in smoothing the transition, and in building sufficient capacities,” he said.
“We welcome the upcoming review of the debt sustainability framework for low income countries to support in maintaining sustainable debt in pursuit of growth-enhancing fiscal policies. In addition to deepening structural reforms, infrastructure spending remains a key priority in creating an enabling environment for private sector growth.”
Gordhan said prospects for the region are weaker and uneven due to trade growth slowing, investment levels declining, continuing currency depreciation, increasing inflationary pressures, and financial conditions have tightened.
The IMF meeting was chaired by the governor of the Bank of Mexico Agustín Carstens, who said the fund supported efforts to assist low income countries in boosting their domestic resource mobilisation efforts.
“We support efforts to integrate capacity development and policy advice more closely, in particular, plans to assist low-income countries in boosting their domestic resource mobilisation efforts, alongside international tax issues,” Carstens said.