Comoros is a small, fragile island state (population: 850,000) with persistently low and shock-prone growth. The last Article IV Consultation (completed in early 2020) assessed Comoros’ fragility as arising from two vicious circles: economic fragility manifests in low fiscal revenue, insufficient government investment in human and physical capital, and pronounced vulnerability to shocks; while institutional fragility manifests in governance challenges, low government implementation capacity, and a weak judicial system. The circles feed into each other, undermining economic performance and stability. Overcoming fragility requires breaking both circles.
The Dutch economy was more resilient than the average Euro area economy in 2020 owing in part to a high rate of digitalization of activities that allowed a large share of the work force to work remotely, while the strong policy response mitigated the impact of containment measures. A strong recovery is underway, with pre-pandemic GDP level to be exceeded in 2021:Q4, and the labor market has tightened considerably. The economy is forecast to grow by 4.0 percent in 2021 and 3.3 percent in 2022, on the back of strong consumption and investment, supported by increasing coverage of vaccines. Near-term risks to the outlook are roughly balanced, driven by the uncertain trajectory of the pandemic on the downside, while a fuller than expected drawdown of savings accumulated in the pandemic would further support domestic demand and growth. Further out, real estate market developments present additional risks.
Burundi is a fragile state with a history of political tensions and weak institutions. Before the Covid-19 pandemic, Burundi was recovering from an economic recession triggered by the 2015 political crisis stemming from the late President Nkurunziza’s decision to run for a third term. Real GDP growth was positive, at 1.8 percent in 2019, but difficult policy challenges persisted.