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Olivier Basdevant
Following the onset of the global economic crisis in 2008, SACU member countries have witnessed a significant growth slowdown, and a deterioration of their fiscal balances. This paper (i) assesses options for the design of the needed fiscal consolidation, and (ii) discussed medium-term fiscal policy rules that would help maintain a sound fiscal stance once consolidation has taken place. The main messages are: (i) government consumption cuts appears to minimize the negative impact on growth, and would be appropriate given the relatively large size of the public sector in each country, (ii) fiscal rules could be of particular interest for SACU members notably, a new customs revenue-sharing formula, procedural rules to strengthen budget process, and numerical rules at the national level.
Mr. Lamin Y Leigh

The Southern African Customs Union (SACU) region is facing an unemployment crisis of enormous proportions. Available statistics indicate that the official unemployment rate in SACU is between 20 and 50 percent and is largely a youth phenomenon ( Figure 6.1 ). To provide jobs for those now jobless and for new entrants to the labor force, SACU members would have to increase employment by an estimated 10 million full-time positions over the period 2012–21. Even this increase would leave the ratio of employment to the working-age population at below 50 percent

Olivier Basdevant

Following the onset of the global economic crisis in 2008, Southern African Customs Union (SACU) member countries experienced a significant growth slowdown and deterioration of their fiscal balances. This deterioration came from two sources. First was a considerable reduction in SACU transfers, which account for a large share of total revenue for Botswana, Lesotho, Namibia, and Swaziland (BLNS), 1 owing, in part, to the global crisis, which reduced the SACU revenue pool, but also to the procyclicality of the revenue-sharing formula, which aggravated the

Mr. Joannes Mongardini, Dalmacio Benicio, Mr. Thomson Fontaine, Gonzalo Pastor, and Geneviève Verdier

expected to return to the 2008 peak until 2012 and will grow broadly in line with world real GDP growth thereafter. Figure 1 . World GDP Growth and SACU Imports, 2000-15 Source: Country authorities, World Economic Outlook , and IMF staff estimates and projections. The impact of the import decline on SACU revenue is expected to be larger for the smaller members of the union. First, the decline in customs revenue implies a smaller common revenue pool to be shared across SACU members. This will affect the smaller SACU members