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International Monetary Fund. African Dept.

Abstract

Economic growth in sub-Saharan Africa as a whole has fallen to its lowest level in 15 years, though with large variation among countries in the region. The sharp decline in commodity prices has severely strained many of the largest economies, including oil exporters Angola and Nigeria, and other commodity exporters, such as Ghana, South Africa, and Zambia. At the same time, the decline in oil prices has helped other countries continue to show robust growth, including Kenya and Senegal. A strong policy response to the terms-of-trade shocks is critical and urgent in many countries. This report also examines sub-Saharan Africa’s vulnerability to commodity price shocks, and documents the substantial progress made in financial develop, especially financial services based on mobile technologies.

International Monetary Fund. African Dept.

Abstract

This paper presents the economic outlook for Sub-Saharan Africa for 2005. Against a background of an easing of demand for imports in advanced countries, average real GDP growth is expected to decline slightly in 2005 from its strong performance in 2004. The slowdown in 2005, however, is attributable primarily to lower growth in most of the oil-producing countries following the exceptional increases in oil production capacity established during 2003 and 2004, especially in Nigeria. Non-oil-producing countries are expecting average growth of about 4.5 percent, similar to that observed in 2004.

International Monetary Fund
In recent years, the IMF has released a growing number of reports and other documents covering economic and financial developments and trends in member countries. Each report, prepared by a staff team after discussions with government officials, is published at the option of the member country.
International Monetary Fund

Agriculture is an important sector of the Zimbabwean economy. At independence, land ownership was highly skewed, as the sector was dominated by a few commercial farms. The initial phases of land reform, along with liberalization of the agricultural sector throughout the 1990s, helped to increase Zimbabwe’s agricultural productivity, but these gains have been reversed over the past few years. After the bumper crop season of 1999/2000, yields have plummeted, owing to droughts and the disruption of commercial farming under the Fast-Track Land Reform Program. The future of the sector is largely dependent on the success of resettled farmers, which requires better weather conditions, the availability of inputs and capital, and a stable economic environment. Preliminary data for the 2002/03 crop season indicate that, for many of Zimbabwe’s main crops, production continues to be low.

International Monetary Fund

The major public enterprises in Zimbabwe face many problems. The shortage of foreign exchange is the single most important obstacle facing the enterprises. Many companies also have a heavy debt burden and lack working capital. Maintenance and rehabilitation have been neglected for many years, and as a result, enterprises are burdened with a depleted capital stock and several operate at very low capacity levels. All public enterprises operate at controlled prices, which constrain their profitability.

International Monetary Fund
In recent years, the IMF has released a growing number of reports and other documents covering economic and financial developments and trends in member countries. Each report, prepared by a staff team after discussions with government officials, is published at the option of the member country.
Willy H. Verheye

This paper describes the need to broaden the agenda for poverty reduction. The broadening of the agenda follows from a growing understanding that poverty is more than low income, a lack of education, and poor health. The poor are frequently powerless to influence the social and economic factors that determine their well being. The paper highlights that a broader definition of poverty requires a broader set of actions to fight it and increases the challenge of measuring poverty and comparing achievement across countries and over time.

International Monetary Fund
In recent years, the IMF has released a growing number of reports and other documents covering economic and financial developments and trends in member countries. Each report, prepared by a staff team after discussions with government officials, is published at the option of the member country.
International Monetary Fund
This paper reviews economic developments in Swaziland during 1990–96. During 1990–95, the shares of exports and imports of goods and services in GDP averaged 81 percent and 92 percent, respectively. The overall trend in economic growth continued in 1995/96. Real GDP expansion was limited to 2.5 percent, fueled by the manufacturing and services sectors. Although there was no new major investment, several established firms expanded or modernized their operations. In particular, this led to significant improvement in the performance of the wood pulp and sugar industries.