Rwanda tops Sub Saharan Africa in new World Bank report

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Like the proverbial phoenix that rose from its ashes, Rwanda has beaten bookmakers, theorists and economists to put the economy back on the track and even performed far better than many other economies around the world.

The World Bank’s new report has ranked Rwanda high in Sub Saharan Africa in policy environment supporting development and poverty reduction in 2015 after a continued growth despite global shocks in the same year.

According to the bank’s Country Policy and Institutional Assessment (CPIA) for Sub-Saharan Africa, Rwanda scored 4.0 in 2015 well above the average score for the whole region that was 3.2 which remains similar to 2015.

The score, the bank says reviews the quality of countries’ policy and institutional progress using 16 developments in the areas of economic management, structural policies, policies for social inclusion and equity, and public sector management and institutions.

Rwanda was followed by Cabo Verde, Kenya, and Senegal, all with a 3.8 score while Ghana’s efforts to make  Improvements in several policy areas  helped  change its score to 3.6 in 2015 from 3.4 to 3.6 in 2015 from 3.4 in 2014.

But despite the performance, the report released on Tuesday show that the Sub Saharan countries recorded a decline in the CPIA score in 2015 which doubles the number of countries that improved.

“Although there are a number of highly performing countries, African IDA-eligible countries on average continue to lag behind those in other regions in their policy and institutional ratings,” says Albert Zeufack, World Bank Chief Economist for Africa.

The  score which rates countries on the scale of 1 (low) to 6 (high) for each indicator tracks performance and challenges of poor countries to enable the allocation of low to zero-interest financing and grants that are eligible for Bank’s International Development Association (IDA) financing.

“Urgent action is needed as more countries are facing downward pressure on the current account and fiscal balances, declining reserve positions, depreciating currencies, higher inflation, and rising debt burdens.” He added.

The report also indicated that seven countries out of 38 registered improvements while another 12 saw a decline in their performance due to weaker performance in economic management cluster driven by poor global economic performance.

“Sub-Saharan Africa’s fragile countries also continue to lag behind fragile countries elsewhere, particularly in the quality of public institutions…….,” the report read in part.

Whilst, the report indicated that countries that are transitioning out of violence recorded average improvements in 2015, while a slowdown in the pace of improvement in governance except from seven countries including Rwanda.


About the author

Olive Ndaka is the Junior Editor for RwandaEye. An investor and young entrepreneur, she is a quick learner and has contributed many articles for RwandaEye in Kinyarwanda.

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