The IMF Working Papers series is designed to make IMF staff research available to a wide audience. Almost 300 Working Papers are released each year, covering a wide range of theoretical and analytical topics, including balance of payments, monetary and fiscal issues, global liquidity, and national and international economic developments.
This paper assesses the efficiency of government expenditure on education and health in 38 countries in Africa in 1984-95, both in relation to each other and compared with countries in Asia and the Western Hemisphere. The results show that, on average, countries in Africa are less efficient than countries in Asia and the Western Hemisphere; however, education and health spending in Africa became more efficient during that period. The assessment further suggests that improvements in educational attainment and health output in African countries require more than just higher budgetary allocations.