IMF Staff Completes Review Mission to Mali
- This favorable outlook is, however, subject to downside risks stemming mainly from Mali’s fragile security situation
- New draft budget provides for resources to help finance the authorities Sustainable Development Fund and incorporates higher public investment, including on the implementation of the 2015 peace agreement
A team from the International Monetary Fund (IMF), led by Lisandro Abrego, held discussions with the Malian authorities in Washington DC from September 14–23 2016 and Bamako, Mali, September 27?28 2016 on the sixth review of Mali’s economic and financial program supported by the IMF under the Extended Credit Facility (ECF).
At the conclusion of the discussions, Mr. Abrego issued the following statement:
“Mali’s economy continues to grow at a strong pace, with a projected GDP growth of 5.4 percent for 2016. Activity is being supported both by public capital spending and the regional central bank’s (BCEAO) accommodative policy. Inflation is falling and is projected to decline to 0.5 percent by end-December. For 2017, GDP growth is projected to remain robust at 5.3 percent, while inflation is expected to remain contained at 1 percent. This favorable outlook is, however, subject to downside risks stemming mainly from Mali’s fragile security situation.
“The mission welcomes continued progress on program implementation. All quantitative targets for June 2016 were met and structural reforms have continued to advance in most areas. The 2016 budget provides for a temporary loosening of the fiscal stance to accommodate higher public investment and peace-related and security needs. Although public investment increased in the first half of the year, the fiscal deficit was below target. While progress on tax administration and public financial management (PFM) reforms has continued, the implementation of reforms to foster good governance has been slower than envisaged, particularly regarding legislation to combat corruption and unlawful enrichment.
“The mission welcomes the draft 2017 budget law, which targets further increases in tax revenues and an overall fiscal deficit of about 4 percent of GDP. The budget provides for resources to help finance the Sustainable Development Fund—for which the authorities plan to identify additional financing sources—and incorporates higher public investment, including to implement the 2015 peace agreement. The program’s structural component includes measures to support revenue mobilization and strengthen PFM and governance, as well as other measures to support sustainable long-run economic growth and poverty reduction.
“On this basis, the Fund mission and the authorities reached preliminary agreement on the main elements of the 2017 economic program and the completion of the sixth ECF review. The IMF Executive Board is tentatively scheduled to consider the program review in December 2016.
“The mission met with Prime Minister, Modibo Keita; Minister of Economy and Finance, Boubou Ciss?; National Director of the Central Bank of West African States, Konzo Traor?; and other senior government officials. The mission also held discussions with the donor community and private sector representatives.
“The mission thanks the authorities for their warm hospitality, and their excellent cooperation and constructive dialogue.”