The Burkinabè authorities appreciate continued support the implementation of their National Plan for Economic and Social Development (PNDES).
In the face of a challenging environment, the authorities remain committed to the implementation of the PNDES. Since the launch of the PNDES significant strides were made in improving access to basic social services, notably through critical infrastructure investment in the health, education and energy sectors. However, development challenges remain significant and are exacerbated by an increasingly difficult context brought about by security shocks including terrorist attacks that took place in Ouagadougou in the past few years. As noted in the staff report, military and security spending increased by 21 percent in 2017 and a further increase of 50 percent is expected in 2018, primarily as a result of higher military investment amid a deteriorating security situation. In light of the attacks that shook the capital earlier this month, security-related spending pressures are likely to increase further.
Against this backdrop, the authorities developed the 2017–2020 Emergency Program for the Sahel (Programme d’Urgence pour le Sahel), notably with a view to countering these destabilizing threats to peace, security, social cohesion and economic development. As these threats may have potentially damaging ramifications for the region and beyond, the authorities are working with their peers to mitigate their causes and symptoms in a prompt and decisive manner. In this endeavor, timely and sustained support from the country’s partners will be welcome.
In support of the policies implemented in the context of the PNDES and the PUS to safeguard macroeconomic stability and promote strong and inclusive growth, the authorities request a new 3-year arrangement under the Extended Credit Facility (ECF). To achieve these objectives, the authorities’ reform and policy agenda under the ECF-supported program will include efforts to create fiscal space for investment in priority sectors, strengthen public investment and financial management, and address structural impediments to growth and poverty reduction.