The United Nations Economic Commission for Africa (ECA), through its Sub-Regional Office for West Africa, organized from 4 to 5 May in Lomé, Togo, a meeting of West African experts to review the draft study report on the theme: “The informal sector in West Africa: Meeting the challenge of formalization for a better contribution to sustainable development and its financing”.
The general objective of this meeting was to collect contributions and comments from national and regional experts in order to enrich the results of the study.
In her speech at the opening ceremony of the workshop, the Minister of Financial Inclusion and the Informal Sector Organization of Togo, Ms. Mazamesso Assih, recognized the importance of this sector which, according to her, constitutes a real development issue in view of the recurrent problem of its formalization and modernization in the public policy agenda of West African countries. Hence the urgency for her to find appropriate responses to strengthen the contributory capacities of this sector to national budgets.
For his part, the Head of the Sub-Regional Initiatives Section of the ECA Office in West Africa, Amadou Diouf said: “With an average contribution of more than 36% to GDP and 62% to employment in Africa (excluding North Africa) over the period 2010-2018, the importance of the informal sector in creating wealth and improving the living conditions of the population calls for reforms and innovative and contextualized policies to achieve an informal sector that fully contributes to economic growth and decent job creation.
“The modernization and formalization of the informal sector will also help to strengthen the resilience and protection of its actors, who are highly vulnerable to various shocks and crises,” added Amadou Diouf.
The meeting was attended by national experts in public finance and statistics (production of national accounts in general and economic statistics of the informal sector), experts from ECOWAS, UEMOA and other sub-regional organizations working on the subject, as well as from United Nations agencies, the media and resource persons.
Distributed by APO Group on behalf of United Nations Economic Commission for Africa (ECA).