This paper highlights The Gambia’s Sixth Review under the Extended Credit Facility Arrangement, Request for a Waiver of Nonobservance of a Performance Criterion, and Financing Assurances Review. The IMF Executive Board decision allows for an immediate disbursement of funds to the Gambia to help meet the country’s financing needs, address the repercussions of the war in Ukraine, and support the post-pandemic recovery. The exogenous shocks continue to weigh on the country’s socio-economic environment, impeding vigorous economic activity. Inflation pressures persist. The Gambian authorities are taking measures to address the exogenous shocks and remain committed to strong policies and reforms. The fiscal policy in 2023 will remain anchored on the adopted budget despite multiple shocks, given high debt vulnerabilities. The necessary measures will be taken to this end, including the collection of some significant budgetary resources. Finally, structural reforms will be pursued and accelerated, particularly on revenue administration, public financial management, state-owned enterprises management, governance, and anti-corruption.
This paper has identified four episodes of large and sustained revenue mobilizations in Sub-Saharan Africa (SSA) and found common lessons from the episodes. Although there is no one-size-fits-all strategy, we can find a tax reform path suitable to Nigeria’s circumstances. Based on these cross-country experiences, this paper recommends: (i) implementing a package reform of tax administration and tax policy measures; (ii) focusing mainly on indirect tax (VAT and excise) reforms and tax incentive rationalizations; (iii) undertaking tax administration measures for improving compliance by strengthening taxpayer segmentation and automation; and (iv) launching social dialogue with key stakeholders as well as high-level political commitment.
This Selected Issues paper presents stylized facts about food insecurity in Nigeria, investigates its drivers in a cross-country setting, and assesses the role of policies. The paper describes regional aspects of Nigeria’s food insecurity and compares the impact of coronavirus disease 2019 and the war in Ukraine on food security in Nigeria and other countries. It also provides an overview of agricultural production and consumption in Nigeria. The paper investigates the drivers of food security using an empirical cross-country framework including demand, supply, and price factors, and offers thoughts on policies to improve agricultural yields and production. The important role of inputs is evident in the policy experience of comparator countries. Nigeria has achieved a substantial increase in agricultural production associated with its policies but some have been less successful. Import dependency for key staples has not fallen and the cost of these agricultural products remains driven by international prices. Further, central bank credit to the agricultural sector has not succeeded in increasing production beyond the stimulus of high rainfall and high food prices.
The repercussions of the war in Ukraine are threatening economic and social stability. Following a slight uptick in July-August, new COVID-19 cases have declined to almost nil recently while the vaccination rate remains low at around 22 percent of the population. The Gambia is also suffering from more frequent climatic shocks, including a recent major flooding. The country continues to advance social and justice reforms. Following a parliamentary election, President Barrow reshuffled the Cabinet in May 2022, without any expected change in the overall direction of economic policies.
This paper discusses The Gambia’s Fourth Review under the Extended Credit Facility Arrangement, Request for a Waiver of Nonobservance and Modification of a Performance Criterion, and Financing Assurances Review. Despite the various waves of the coronavirus disease 2019 pandemic, the Gambian economy grew by 4.3 percent in 2021 and is expected to grow by 5.6 percent in 2022. Growth is projected to reach 5.6 percent in 2022, predicated on strong remittance inflows, a robust expansion of the construction sector, and large public investment projects. The repercussions of the war in Ukraine intensify inflationary pressures, exacerbate pandemic-related uncertainties, dampen tourism prospects, and disrupt the supply of food and agricultural inputs. The central bank took initial measures to contain inflationary pressures, as inflation reached 11.7 percent at end-April 2022. The authorities remain committed to strong policy measures and structural reforms, including on fiscal management, State-Owned Enterprises, and governance.