ANTANANARIVO, February 13, 2020 – The Madagascar Country Economic Memorandum, published today by the World Bank, notes that the economic recovery in recent years, combined with a peaceful political transition following the 2018 presidential elections, offers a solid foundation for Madagascar’s emergence from a recurring cycle of poverty and instability.
This five-yearly publication assesses the country’s economic performance and proposes priority reforms geared toward generating more robust, inclusive, and sustainable growth. It analyzes in detail the factors driving the success of a number of high-performing sectors, the weakness of other lagging sectors, and crosscutting obstacles to Madagascar’s economic emergence.
“In recent years, economic growth supported by high-performing sectors such as agribusiness, textiles and apparel, and IT outsourcing has helped boost the job supply, although at an inadequate pace given that only one new job seeker in 12 successfully secures employment in the formal private sector,” explains Natasha Sharma, Senior Economist and lead author of the report. “With the recent successes as a foundation, Madagascar can build a more resilient and inclusive economy, particularly by enhancing connectivity, human capital, and the business environment, as well as by adopting more modern agricultural practices.”
According to the report, Madagascar has four key assets that could propel growth sectors: a high-quality labor force, unique natural resources, the positioning of a number of products on the premium market, and a fast Internet connection. The country will achieve more inclusive growth by filling the gap in infrastructure and human capital investment. The report also recommends innovative measures aimed at enhancing competitiveness, improving the business climate, and boosting agricultural productivity.
These reforms include digitizing public procurement, strengthening competition laws and regulatory agencies, securing new sources of financing for road maintenance, implementing remote sensing for agricultural production, and enhancing the regulatory framework for private associations with public interest.
“The goal of this Country Economic Memorandum is to guide the formulation of the economic reforms needed to unlock the country’s potential for inclusive growth,” states Marie-Chantal Uwanyiligira, World Bank Country Manager for Madagascar. “What’s new about this report is that it offers a slate of concrete actions aimed at improving the competitiveness of growth sectors in Madagascar with a view to stimulating investment and accelerating the country’s economic emergence.”