World Bank and Madagascar Commit to Better Statistics for Improved Decision-making

March 29, 2017

$30 Million World Bank investment will prioritize a new population and housing census, updated poverty statistics, and improved basic economic statistics

WASHINGTON, March 29, 2017 – The World Bank today approved a $30 million International Development Association (IDA) credit to strengthen the capacity of Madagascar’s National Statistical Institute (INSTAT) to produce quality statistics and enhance its dissemination practices. This investment will enable the government of Madagascar to base its policies and poverty reduction initiatives on up-to-date information on the realities facing its citizens. 

Madagascar is falling behind on several key statistical products. The last population census was conducted in 1993, which affects much of the statistical system and reduces the credibility of development planning, monitoring, and management. Moreover, the country’s broad statistical system is outdated and does not comply with international standards. This hinders the country’s capacity to use reliable data for its development decision making and planning. 

The timely availability of the data will open space to design more appropriate policies and programs. For example, the accurate knowledge of the geographical distribution of the population will be a fundamental input for the design of more accurate emergency plans in response to natural disasters and also for the planning of investments to improve the delivery of basic services,” said Maria Dolores Arribas-Banos and Abdoullahi Beidou, World Bank project leaders“Today’s investment responds to calls from the government, development partners, academia, and civil society for timelier and higher quality data on the challenges facing the people of Madagascar.”

The project will address the most pressing demands in terms of collection, analysis and dissemination of data, supporting the National Strategy for the Development of Statistics and building the capacity of INSTAT personnel and facilities. A new population and housing census is planned for late 2017, and two sets of income, expenditure, and living standards household surveys will be conducted in 2018 and 2021, respectively. The project will also support updates to the system of national accounts and the Consumer Price Index.

* The World Bank’s International Development Association (IDA), established in 1960, helps the world’s poorest countries by providing grants and low to zero-interest loans for projects and programs that boost economic growth, reduce poverty, and improve poor people’s lives. IDA is one of the largest sources of assistance for the world’s 77 poorest countries, 39 of which are in Africa. Resources from IDA bring positive change to the 1.3 billion people who live in IDA countries. Since 1960, IDA has supported development work in 112 countries. Annual commitments have averaged about $19 billion over the last three years, with about 50 percent going to Africa.

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