Côte d'Ivoire's economic performance has been impressive over the past four years with robust GDP growth that resulted in a decline in poverty. For the 2016-2020 period, the Government adopted a new National Development Plan (NDP) designed to transform Côte d'Ivoire into a middle-income economy by 2020 and substantially reduce the poverty rate. In an April 2016 meeting of the consultative group formed to fund the NDP, donors pledged to provide assistance in the amount of US$15.4 billion in grants and loans. The World Bank Group committed to doubling its support over the next four years to approximately US$5 billion.
Political stability was restored with the smooth re-election of President Ouattara in October 2015 for a second five-year term, and with a referendum, held in October 2016, which established the country's Third Republic. In December 2016, Ivorians cast their votes peacefully to elect deputies to the National Assembly. In early 2017, however, social demands and mutinies led the Government to enter discussions with the main trade unions and the mutineers. In addition, Simone Gbagbo, the country's former first lady, was acquitted of "crime against humanity" and "war crime" charges that had been brought against her.
The economy of Côte d'Ivoire continues to prosper. Most of the country's economic and financial indicators are positive. A minor decline in the growth rate in 2016 (to slightly under 8 percent) has been due to a contraction of the agricultural sector as a result of unfavorable weather conditions. The other sectors, including telecommunications, finance, transport, energy, and trade, performed well. Prospects for the next three years are bright, with a growth rate expected to converge toward 7.5 percent in 2019.
In order to diversify its economy successfully, Côte d'Ivoire must build its human capital so as to meet labor market needs more effectively. Indeed, modern product processing methods and services require skills that are still scarce among local workers.
The key social challenge will be to reduce inequalities significantly by keeping the country's economy on a strong growth path. In 2014, Côte d'Ivoire ranked 172nd among 188 countries on the United Nations Human Development Index (HDI). Between 1985 and 2011, the depth and severity of poverty increased considerably, as the poverty rate rose from approximately 10 percent to 51 percent. However, the findings of the last Living Standards Monitoring Survey carried out by the World Bank indicate that poverty decreased to 46 percent in 2015 as a result of the recent economic recovery.
Last Updated: Apr 17, 2017