The World Bank announced today a significant financial support to back reforms aimed at strengthening public and private investment, human capital, and the sustainable use of natural resources. The $400 million First Investment for Growth Development Policy Financing is a budget support operation that will support Côte d’Ivoire’s ambitious goal of doubling average individual income and reducing the current poverty rate from 39.5 percent to 20 percent by 2030.
Specifically, this funding will help the government implement policies to lay the foundation for sustainable and inclusive private sector-led growth. These include strengthening competition in key enabling sectors and domestic revenue mobilization, expanding access to health and education services, and promoting the sustainable use of natural resources.
“To maintain high growth over the medium term, Côte d’Ivoire must address the main obstacles to the structural transformation of its economy. Investment in quality human capital will be crucial to empowering Côte d’Ivoire’s young and fast-growing population to take up productive employment. The country has enormous potential and many opportunities to increase private investment and make the private sector an engine of growth and job creation. We now need to create the conditions for the development of this key sector and foster the functioning of competitive markets,” said Coralie Gevers, World Bank Country Director for Côte d’Ivoire, Benin, Guinea and Togo. “It is equally important to support more sustainable agricultural production, greater coastal resilience and combat deforestation for more inclusive and sustainable growth. Hence the need to protect natural resources and change current practices, to build resilience to increasingly frequent climate risks,” added Ms. Gevers.
This budget support operation is aligned with the priorities identified by the World Bank Group in Côte d’Ivoire, including improving agricultural productivity and rural incomes, creating jobs through private sector-led growth, and developing human capital through improved service delivery and social spending.
In this context, the main reforms supporting public and private investment aim at improving sectoral competition policy and the regulatory framework, particularly in network sectors such as transport, finance, and telecommunications, which are vital inputs for the economy and consumers. They will also focus on mobilizing domestic resources to ensure debt sustainability and maximize private investment inflows.
Second, those envisioned for human capital accumulation should help strengthen the quality of basic education in all regions, mitigate the skill mismatch through more effective vocational skills systems, and promote stronger, inclusive, and sustainable health insurance to ensure equitable access to health care, especially for the most vulnerable populations.
Finally, for the sustainable management of natural resources, the measures envisaged will support traceable and sustainable cocoa production, to ensure continued access to the European Union market and guarantee the livelihoods of rural populations, as well as strengthen the environmental regulatory framework, with particular attention to climate-vulnerable coastal areas.
Distributed by APO Group on behalf of The World Bank Group.