Guinea
Technical Assistance Report-Report on Technical Assistance Mission on External Sector Statistics

This Technical Assistance report on Guinea addressed issues like: improvement of the surveys on migrant remittances and informal trade; perform detailed technical work to improve external sector statistics (ESS); and participation in the coordinated direct investment survey and the quarterly external debt statistics database. The mission observed that the recommendations from the previous technical assistance mission had been satisfactorily implemented. The report also describes that the timeliness of ESS, based on international standards, should be improved, mainly for the international investment position and the quarterly balance of payments statistics. In order to contribute to progress in the areas discussed in the report, the mission made a one-year detailed action plan, with priority given to the recommendations of importance in improving ESS. The recommendation on reporting reinvested earnings of direct investment enterprises, net increases in insurance company liabilities, and income on reserve assets has partially been implemented.

Abstract

This Technical Assistance report on Guinea addressed issues like: improvement of the surveys on migrant remittances and informal trade; perform detailed technical work to improve external sector statistics (ESS); and participation in the coordinated direct investment survey and the quarterly external debt statistics database. The mission observed that the recommendations from the previous technical assistance mission had been satisfactorily implemented. The report also describes that the timeliness of ESS, based on international standards, should be improved, mainly for the international investment position and the quarterly balance of payments statistics. In order to contribute to progress in the areas discussed in the report, the mission made a one-year detailed action plan, with priority given to the recommendations of importance in improving ESS. The recommendation on reporting reinvested earnings of direct investment enterprises, net increases in insurance company liabilities, and income on reserve assets has partially been implemented.

Summary of Mission Outcomes and Priority Recommendations

1. A technical assistance (TA) mission visited Guinea during July 9–20, 2018, as part of the project funded by the Government of Japan to improve external sector statistics (ESS) in 17 Francophone African countries. This was the third mission under this project following the missions in 2016 and 2017. The mission was hosted by the Central Bank of the Republic of Guinea (BCRG), which is responsible for compiling ESS. The mission addressed the following main issues (i) improvement of the surveys on migrant remittances and informal trade; (ii) perform detailed technical work to improve ESS; and (iii) participation in the coordinated direct investment survey (CDIS) and the quarterly external debt statistics (QEDS) database. The mission also reviewed the status of implementation of the recommendations from the previous TA missions.

2. During its visit, the mission worked closely with the Balance of Payments Unit (SBP) and the Monetary Statistics Unit (SSM) within the BCRG Directorate of Statistics and Balance of Payments (DSBP). It also held discussions with other key institutions aimed at improving ESS, including the National Debt Directorate (DND) and the National Statistics Institute (INS). The mission completed the assigned tasks and agreed with the authorities on an action plan to improve ESS.

3. The mission observed that the recommendations from the previous technical assistance mission had been satisfactorily implemented. Those efforts should continue, particularly regarding correcting net errors and omissions (NEO) in accordance with the Balance of Payments and International Investment Position Manual, sixth edition (BPM6); conducting outreach for balance of payments survey correspondents; and arranging technical meetings with the DND and the INS to address the update of debt statistics and the consistency of international merchandise trade statistics, respectively.

4. Data collection for the informal trade survey began in March 2018 and is continuing. For the migrant remittances survey, the data collection tools were validated, and interviewer training was scheduled for July 2018. The administration of questionnaires was programmed for the second half of 2018. Development of an automated application to process external sector data is also continuing. The initial tests have been conducted and the related tasks are expected to be completed by end-2018.

5. Improving data sources and the quality of data for specific balance of payments items should continue. The mission proposed the use of administrative sources from the social security fund and utility companies (electricity and water) to capture transactions with nonresident entities and recommended reclassifying the expenses of Guinea’s foreign diplomatic missions to general government goods and services not included elsewhere instead of “current transfers.” Corrections should also be made to the item “other current transfers,” which includes trade (counterparty transactions) between resident corporations and nonresidents, rather than transfers as used in the balance of payments.

6. Consistency between ESS and other macroeconomic accounts and data reliability continue to pose a challenge. The quality of data reported by companies, particularly mining companies, leaves room for improvement. Further effort is also needed to ensure consistency between the balance of payments and the government flow-of-funds table (TOFE).

7. The formula used to calculate NEO is not consistent with the BPM6 recommendations. Furthermore, the calculation of balances for functional categories of the financial account should be revised to comply with the BPM6 methodology. The correction of these issues as proposed by the mission resulted in large NEO that should be addressed. Improving the quality of financial data from private corporations should help reduce NEO.

8. The main task remaining before the submission of CDIS data is to complete the data entry and processing application to streamline the completion of questionnaires. The mission encouraged the DSBP to strengthen cooperation with the Private Investment Promotion Agency (APIP) and the Guinean Chamber of Mines to improve the collection of direct investment data.

9. Discussions have already begun between the SDBP and the DND in connection with Guinea’s reporting to the QEDS. They should continue, primarily to define each stakeholder’s responsibilities in the process of joining the QEDS database and the schedule for submitting data to the World Bank.

10. The timeliness of ESS, based on international standards, should be improved, mainly for the international investment position (IIP) and the quarterly balance of payments statistics. In addition, the format in which ESS data is published on the BCRG website and the periods of availability should be revised to enhance public access.

11. To contribute to progress in the above-mentioned areas, the mission made a one-year detailed action plan, with priority given to the following recommendations of importance in improving ESS:

Table 1.

Guinea Priority Recommendations

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Additional information on the priority recommendations and corresponding actions/milestones is provided in the action plan presented in the section entitled “Detailed Technical Assessment and Recommendations.”

Implementation of Recommendations and Developments with Respect to External Sector Statistics

A. Implementation of Recommendations

12. The mission and DSBP staff reviewed the implementation of recommendations made by the previous technical assistance mission of September 25–October 6, 2017. Of the 11 recommendations made by the previous mission, 10 were to be completed by March 2018. The recommendation on the use of mirror data from statistics on external trading goods from the IMF Direction of Trade Statistics (DOTS) was to be completed by June 2018 at the latest. The overall implementation of recommendations was satisfactory despite personnel constraints in the unit responsible for preparing the external accounts.

13. The recommendation on instituting a framework for quarterly consultations between the BCRG and the DND to update and validate external debt statistics was partially implemented. A working session between the two entities in January 2018 led to an amended questionnaire on public external debt. Quarterly meetings of the Technical Committee on Balance of Payments Harmonization (CTHBP)—the next meeting is scheduled in August 2018—also provide an opportunity to discuss issues of interest. In addition, the questionnaire on external debt was modified to add a line entitled “IMF credits and loans.” Both entities use the central bank position as a source of information for the new line item instead of data from the Ministry of Economy and Finance (MEF).

14. The verification of data sources for other (private) sectors’ stock of short-term debt was not performed. This situation is attributed to the unavailability of data prior to 2008. The mission encouraged the DSBP to increase the coverage of the balance of payments survey for 2017, particularly for stocks of debt. The 2017 stock of debt could be used to estimate prior years through backward extrapolation based on the annual flows observed.

15. The recommendation on reporting reinvested earnings of direct investment enterprises, net increases in insurance company liabilities, and income on reserve assets was partially implemented. A training session for correspondents is being prepared and will serve as a framework for outreach to the entities concerned. However, mining companies are a particular case; they submit the responses to balance of payments questionnaires to the oversight ministry, rather than directly to the BCRG. This complicates outreach to these companies. Missions to the mining sites could also be considered to train the staff completing the questionnaire. With respect to income on reserve assets, the information is collected but is included in interest on portfolio investments in the primary revenue account. The mission suggested that the DSBP reclassify the amount concerned as “interest” on reserve assets in the same account. In addition, the Directorate of Foreign Exchange stated that the authorities had suspended the placement of BCRG foreign assets, but placement resumed in July 2017.

16. The statistics on trade credits were confirmed by the balance of payments survey among corporations. Also, the amount reported as Debt instruments – Direct investor in investment enterprises in 2016 was reclassified under the item Direct investment – Equity investments other than reinvestment of profits – Direct investor in direct investment enterprises. The revised data were submitted to STA.

17. The issue concerning the formula used to calculate net errors and omissions (NEO) for specific quarters in the balance of payments was not satisfactorily corrected. The formula in question has been modified, but the error persists. The mission also noted an error in calculating the balances of functional categories of the financial account. The mission held a working meeting with the DSBP to correct these problems.

18. The BCRG has yet to effectively utilize data sources from the Bank for International Settlements (BIS) to reconcile statistics on cash and deposits. The BCRG’s Internet connection is too slow to download the data. The mission provided the DSBP with tables on cross-border positions by instrument for counterparties resident in Guinea (Table A6 .1) obtained from the BIS website (https://www.bis.org/statistics/bankstats.htm?m=6%7C31%7C69). The BCRG could provide the SBP with a better-quality Internet connection. A comparison between the non-bank sector stocks of claims and liabilities indicated by the BIS and reported in the IIP is provided in Annex I.

19. The transactions recorded under “SDR allocation” in the 2014, 2015, and 2016 balance of payments have not been corrected. The DSBP requested the mission’s assistance in correcting the inconsistency.

20. Concerning the reconciliation of DOTS mirror data and import data for 2016, a working session with the Directorate General of Debt (DGD) and the INS on this issue is scheduled for July. The mission’s discussions with INS indicated that statistics on imports and exports are not harmonized, mainly because of the DSBP’s adjustments of data on bauxite exports by Société Minière de Boké (SMB). The DSBP considers the price used by the DGD to value SMB bauxite exports too high and revises the figures based on prices stipulated in the conventions between the government and other bauxite mining companies. The DSBP does not have access to the convention between the government and SMB. Also, the INS requested technical assistance with the national accounts to reconcile real sector statistics with the ESS while maintaining the balance of supply and use. Greater efforts are needed to ensure harmonization of statistics published by the BCRG and the INS on international trade in merchandise and, on that basis, improve consistency between the external and national accounts. This concern could also be raised with the National Statistics Board (CNS), which oversees the coordination and harmonization of statistics within the Guinean statistics system.

21. Finally, the mission confirmed the implementation of the recommendation on reconciling statistics on direct investment and other investment reported in the balance of payments with changes in stocks reported in the IIP; and ensuring that reserve assets are reported consistently in the monetary statistics and the balance of payments statistics.

Recommendations:

  • Schedule regular meetings of the CTHBP and ensure the harmonization of external debt and international trade statistics;

  • Use data sources from the BIS and the DOTS to improve ESS;

  • Organize a training and outreach session for balance of payments survey correspondents, including correspondents from mining companies.

B. Developments With Respect to ESS

22. The additional staff member planned for the SBP by end–2017 has not yet been hired, mainly due to a reorganization of BCRG staff now under way. Initially, the SBP was to receive two additional staff members. The unit currently has three members, including the unit chief, as indicated during the initial October 2016 mission. The third staff member was in training in 2017 and re-joined the unit in April 2018. Considering the workload required to improve ESS, it will be difficult for the BCRG to achieve its objectives in this area with the current staffing level.

23. The survey on informal trade conducted in partnership with the DGD, and the survey on migrant transfers in cooperation with the INS, both financed by the African Development Bank (AfDB), are continuing as planned. Data collection for the informal trade survey began in March 2018 and is ongoing. The data collection tools for the migrant transfers survey have been finalized; training of interviewers is programmed for July 2018, and data collection is expected to begin during the second half of 2018.

24. Also, work is under way on the development of an IT application to automate the processing of balance of payments and IIP data. The initial testing has been completed and the application is expected to be in production before end–2018. The DSBP stated that it had sent a mission to the Central Bank of West African States (BCEAO) headquarters in Dakar in 2016 to share experiences with their balance of payments information system. However, the Bank of Central African States (BEAC) has a more advanced system that enables corporations to complete their questionnaires directly online. The DSBP would benefit by borrowing from the BEAC model in developing its dedicated balance of payments application.

25. As indicated during the previous TA mission, Guinea’s balance of payments for the period 2014–2017 reflects SDR allocations, although the most recent SDR allocation was in 2009. The mission discussed the problem with the DSBP with a view toward correcting it. Since there were no transactions during the periods concerned, the balance of payments should not indicate any changes. The overall IIP should reflect the stocks of SDR allocations, which would vary slightly over those periods in line with the exchange rate between the Guinean franc and the SDR. The effect of exchange rate fluctuations should be recorded in the revaluation account, not in the balance of payments financial account. Changes in the IIP are explained by the financial account and that of other changes in financial assets and liabilities (change in volume and revaluation).

Recommendations:

  • Incorporate the results of the migrant transfers and informal trade surveys and forward the revised data to STA for publication;

  • Correct the transactions relating to SDR allocations included in the balance of payments;

  • Using the BEAC information system as a model, develop an automated balance of payments application.

Detailed Technical Assessment and Recommendations

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A. Improvement of Source Data

26. The item general government goods and services n.i.e. (not included elsewhere) shows no credit entries. Information on the consumption of electricity, water, and telecommunications by nonresident entities could be used to estimate this item. The mission encouraged the DSBP to contact the companies concerned to collect the data on consumption by territorial enclaves and other nonresident entities.

27. Also, salaries paid to local personnel by nonresident entities could be supplemented by data on social security if the information provided on the corresponding questionnaires is unsatisfactory. The mission encouraged the DSBP to contact the social security agency (CNSS) to collect quarterly data on social contributions and statements of wages of nonresident entities to estimate the amounts paid as employee salaries.

28. General government secondary revenue is negative for the years 2015 and 2016 because secondary revenue paid to nonresidents exceeded that received by nonresidents. The DSBP explained that this is because secondary revenue paid to nonresidents includes MEF transfers to Guinean embassies and consulates located abroad. The mission noted first that the transfers are operations between residents, as the foreign entities are considered residents of Guinea. Secondly, expenditures of embassies and consulates should be included in the item “General government goods and services n.i.e.” if the specific services received by the entities are not known (BPM6, § 10.173 and 10.179).

29. The first quarter of 2018 statistics show no debits or credits entries for the secondary revenue account item “workers’ remittances.” The DSBP explained that workers’ remittances are estimated and included in the item “Other current transfers.” The mission recommended that the DSBP record those operations in the item “Private transfers.” Also, the remittances survey in preparation should contribute to improving those statistics.

30. Moreover, other current transfers of financial and nonfinancial corporations are reported based on data on “transfers” issued or received by those corporations. However, those transactions are actually exchanges (with quid pro quo) rather than transfers (without quid pro quo) as used in the balance of payments (BPM6, § 3.13). The transactions involve the exchange of a good or service of corresponding economic value, as opposed to transactions without consideration. The mission encouraged the DSBP to correct the transactions and ensure that correspondents completing the balance of payments survey adequately understand the concept of “current transfer.”

31. The mission and SBP staff held a working meeting with the DGD to discuss the valuation of bauxite exports. The valuation of bauxite exported by mining companies that began production before the effective date of the 2013 mining code is governed by the convention with the government, while bauxite exports by companies established after 2013 is governed by the 2013 Mining Code, which bases the value of bauxite on the international price and the alumina content. For example, bauxite exports by the Compagnie de Bauxite de Kindia (CBK) and the Compagnie de Bauxite de Guinée (CBG, in operation since 1973) are valued at US$15 and US$32 per ton, respectively. On the other hand, for SMB, the largest bauxite mine that began production in 2015, bauxite is valued according to the quality, the international price (London Metal Exchange, LME), and alumina content (Annex VII).

32. The price per ton of aluminum (LME Primary Aluminum Cash) stood at US$1,704 at end-2016 and US$2,256 at end-2017. However, the price of bauxite, which is sold by private contract, was US$41.00 and US$44.50, respectively, at those dates (China Bauxite Australian Monohydrate 50 percent CIF). During that time, the DSBP valued bauxite at an average of US$43 per ton, although the DGD approach, which is also used by the INS, appears to overstate the value. The DGD valuation method is intended primarily for tax purposes and not statistics. The DSBP should arrange a technical meeting with the DGD, the INS, and the ministry in charge of mines to decide on a valuation to be used for foreign trade statistics that is close to the market price. In addition, it might consult the quarterly and annual reports of Australian Bauxite Limited (http://www.australianbauxite.com.au), which contain information on quantities and prices of bauxite sold on the Chinese market by the world’s leading bauxite exporters, including Guinea. The next mission could review the proposed bauxite valuation in detail.

Recommendations:

  • Utilize sources from public entities (social security, electricity and water utilities, etc.) to estimate transactions with nonresident entities;

  • Correct the items “general government secondary revenue” and “other current transfers”;

  • Arrange a technical meeting with the Directorate General of Customs, the INS, and the ministry in charge of mines to establish a harmonized approach to valuing bauxite exports for international trade statistics.

B. Data Consistency and Plausibility

33. The mission reviewed the consistency of balance of payments statistics and the IIP with respect to data from the BIS, the TOFE, and the monetary and financial statistics (MFS).

34. Guinea’s imports jumped by 102 percent in 2016, from US$2,192 million in 2015 to US$4,429 million. The increase was driven by equipment imports (mining vessels, crane ships, towing vehicles, etc.) by mining companies, particularly SMB (bauxite) and Société Guinea Alumina. Mining companies’ investments and equipment purchases were reflected in increased bauxite exports in 2017 (+127 percent). In addition, gold production increased substantially, from 19.6 tons in 2015 to 30.0 tons in 2017 and 45.1 tons in 2017. The proportion of artisanal gold production officially exported increased substantially over the period (+12.2 percent in 2015, +41.8 percent in 2016, and +57.5 percent in 2017), reflecting the February 2016 decision by the Minister of Budget to temporarily suspend the system of withholding taxes, commissions and other fees on exports by licensed gold exporters. Gold produced is weighed, valued, and exported with the BCRG’s intervention.

35. Mining companies’ investments and equipment purchases are generally financed by external borrowing from the parent company or foreign financial corporations. This development is not reflected in the balance of payments or IIP statistics; neither is it reflected in debt instruments within direct investment or loans within other investments.

36. Increased mining sector equipment imports in 2016 resulted in increased bauxite and gold exports in 2017. However, the proceeds of foreign sales of those goods—which should be reflected in increased reserve assets, non-bank sector deposits, repayments of financial liabilities, or distributions of dividends—are not discernible in the external accounts. An analysis of BIS statistics found no increase in non-bank sector deposits of the same magnitude over the period. This suggests a need for a thorough investigation of foreign investment enterprises, primarily mining companies, and their relations with the parent companies, particularly in regard to debt, equity holdings, distribution of dividends, and interest payments, etc.

37. The TOFE statistics are not always consistent with the balance of payments statistics (Annex II). This is because revenue and expenditures are allocated to incorrect categories. For example, the data on project grants (allocated to investments), budgetary grants, interest on external public debt, and transfers to international organizations of which Guinea is a member should be updated in the balance of payments to conform to the TOFE data. The mission’s discussions with the SBP indicated that interest payments on external public debt are included in income from portfolio investments. The mission prepared a consistency table between TOFE data and balance of payments data for the statisticians’ use as a reference (Annex II (a)). A comparison of TOFE statistics with balance of payments statistics is also provided in Annex II (b). The DSBP was encouraged to correct public sector international transactions to conform to the operations presented in the TOFE.

38. All foreign assets and liabilities of other deposit-taking corporations (ODC) presented in their monetary surveys (Form 2SR) are classified under “Other investments / Cash and deposits” in the financial account. This makes it impossible to distinguish between interbank positions (deposits and loans), which should be included in this item, and other positions (BPM6, §5.42). According to discussions with the monetary statistics unit chief, the item “Nonresident credits” in the liabilities on Form 2SR represents interbank positions, while stocks of other accounts payable/receivable on the Form 2SR should be included in the corresponding item of the IIP and the balance of payments (Other accounts receivable/payable), not “Cash and deposits.”

39. Moreover, the data on stocks and flows of ODCs’ direct investments are not completed (bank questionnaire). As ODCs are subject to the banking law, the DSBP should take steps to ensure that they correctly complete the questionnaire or face sanctions.

40. The “IMF reserve position,” a line item of reserve assets in the balance of payments and IIP, is completed using data from the IMF website. However, this statistic is not completed in the BCRG monetary survey (Form 1SR). The monetary statistics unit should correct the Form 1SR to ensure consistency between the monetary and external sectors for this item. Furthermore, the figures reported on Form 1SR for “Other deposits included in official reserves” have fluctuated erratically from month to month and should be verified.

Recommendations:

  • Verify the accuracy and reliability of external account data provided by mining companies;

  • Ensure consistency between balance of payments data and the TOFE;

  • Improve the breakdown of monetary statistics for other depository corporations in the IIP;

  • Complete the “Reserve assets” item in the BCRG monetary survey (Form 1SR).

C. Financial Account and Calculation of NEO

41. The balance of functional categories of the BCRG balance of payments financial account is calculated as the sum of net acquisitions of financial assets and the net increase in liabilities. This practice is based on the sign convention used in calculating the financial account balance in the Balance of Payments Manual, fifth edition (BPM5). In contrast, the financial account balance in the BPM6 is equal to net acquisitions of financial assets less net increases in liabilities (§ 8.102 and § 8.103 of the BPM6 Compilation Guide). The mission encouraged the DSBP to correct the formula used to calculate the balances of functional categories in the financial account.

42. A comparison of statistics from the balance of payments financial account provided by the DSBP with statistics from the IMF database identified some net increases in liabilities that appear with the opposite arithmetic sign in the IMF statistics database. The DSBP was asked to review those statistics.

43. The DSBP calculates NEO as the negative value of the financial account less the sum of the current and capital accounts (EON = – CF – CA – CK), rather than the financial account balance less the sum of the current and capital accounts (EON = CF – CA – CK). The mission corrected the formulas used to calculate the functional categories of the financial account and NEO as indicated in the figures below. Annex III provides further details on the corrections. The recalculated NEO for 2016 and 2016 are larger negative values, reflecting significant imbalances. This situation, particularly for mining companies, could be a sign of the companies’ inadequate coverage of foreign deposits, debt repayment, distributions of dividends, or payment of services.

Figure 1.
Figure 1.

Comparison of the DSBP’s Financial Account With the Recalculated Version

Citation: IMF Staff Country Reports 2019, 115; 10.5089/9781498312578.002.A001

Figure 2.
Figure 2.

Comparison of the DSBP’s NEO With the Recalculated Version

Citation: IMF Staff Country Reports 2019, 115; 10.5089/9781498312578.002.A001

44. In addition, stocks of financial liabilities are included in the item “Reserve assets” in the IIP for first quarter 2018. In the standard components of the balance of payments and IIP, reserve-related liabilities are included in other categories (in particular, portfolio and other investments) (BPM6, § 6.115).

45. The mission urged the DSBP to ensure that the balance of payments and direct investment questionnaires are fully and consistently completed, particularly the questionnaires sent to mining companies, which have been the source of volatility in the external accounts in recent years.

Recommendation:

  • Correct the formula used to calculate net errors and omissions and the balances of functional categories of the financial account in accordance with the BPM6, then submit the revised statistics to STA.

D. Direct Investment and Participation in the Coordinated Direct Investment Survey (CDIS)

46. Given the need to improve consistency between the financial account statistics and the IIP and ensure the reliability of those statistics with respect to current operations (imports, income from investments), the DSBP should improve its system of collecting data on direct investments and other components of the financial account in preparation for participation in the CDIS.

47. The questionnaire used to collect data for the external accounts includes information relating to the current account, the capital account, and the financial account. In particular, the section relating to the financial account requests information on the opening and closing balances of stocks, and other flows with other Economic Community of West African States (ECOWAS) countries and the rest of the world.

48. The DSBP collects data on companies’ foreign investments each year based on the form shown in Annex V. This information is used to supplement the quarterly external account data in preparing the annual accounts. At this time, they are not used in the context of the CDIS.

49. The mission held discussions with the SBP on the supplemental direct investment form, the data collection method, and the development of an application to support input and analysis of data to streamline completion of the CDIS form. The SBP plans to roll out the CDIS in 2019, focusing first on large direct investment enterprises and large direct investors. A guide on this subject could be prepared, as was done for the balance of payments survey. The use of CDIS mirror data reported by counterparties would also provide useful information. In addition, the SBP should pay due attention to data from depository corporations, because all their debt positions with related nonresident depository corporations are excluded from direct investment (BPM6, § 5.42). The mission shared the WAEMU countries’ experience in this area with the SBP and provided it with the spreadsheet tool used by WAEMU countries for use as a model.

50. In the interest of improving data sources for foreign investment, the mission and the SBP held a meeting with the Private Investment Promotion Agency (APIP). The APIP’s function is to promote private investment in Guinea and implement the government’s policy for expanding domestic and foreign private investment. In June 2018, the APIP implemented an automated national business registry (SYNERGUI) as a solution to streamline business formation.

51. The APIP maintains data on business creation according to the investor’s country of origin and total capital stock. In 2016 it conducted a study on direct investment in Guinea based on intentions to invest. The mission suggested to the DSBP that it collaborate with the APIP in view of the key role it plays in promoting investment in Guinea. The available data on business creation could also be provided to the DSBP for use in producing the external accounts. In addition, the DSBP could invite the APIP to meetings of the STHBP as needed.

52. The mission and the SBP also met with the Guinean Chamber of Mines (CMG) to gain a better understanding of the Guinean mining sector, particularly in terms of operations and financing, and request its support in outreach to the membership on the external account surveys. The CMG indicated that the mining sector was willing to cooperate in the BCRG surveys. It also insisted on using administrative data on the mining sector, which the BCRG could obtain first from the Ministry of Mines. The CMG explained that since the mining companies are bound by an obligation of transparency, they report this information regularly to the oversight ministry and it is available in the ministry’s annual report.

Recommendations:

  • Complete the CDIS data entry and processing template for use in completing the associated IMF form and submit statistics to STA;

  • Arrange a working meeting with the APIP to share data and coordinate both organizations’ activities relating to foreign investment.

E. External Debt Statistics and Participation in the Quarterly External Debt Statistics (QEDS)

53. The mission held a working meeting with the chief of the DND’s external debt division to review the previous mission’s recommendations concerning the update of external debt statistics. Implementation of the recommendation is in progress. The meeting also provided an opportunity to discuss the conclusions of the Debt Management Performance Assessment (DeMPA) mission and the outlook for participation in the QEDS.

54. The DeMPA mission held a working meeting with the units upstream and downstream of the borrowing process. Its assessment of the mechanism for issuing public securities was positive; however, other areas such as securing debt statistics need improvement. The server problem and the update of the Commonwealth Secretariat Debt Recording and Management System (CD-DRMS) software are still to be resolved. Moreover, the CD-DRMS software is not available in French. The question of whether existing data can be migrated from CD-DRMS would arise, however, if the DND decided to replace its debt management system. This issue was presented to the competent authorities, and support has been requested from technical and financial partners including the French Development Agency (AFD). The mission encouraged the DND to consider the possibility of purchasing the UNCTAD Debt Management and Analysis System (DMAS), which is available in French, to have a precise assessment of the costs and benefits of both automated debt management options. The DMAS system is used by 69 countries throughout the world, including 23 African countries, while the CD-DRMS is used in 53 countries around the world, 19 of them in Africa.

55. Regarding the prospect of participation in the QEDS, each stakeholder’s role should be clearly defined in an official document. For example, the BCRG could provide debt statistics for the central bank, commercial banks, and the non-bank private sector; while the DND could be responsible for statistics on debt and service of public and government-guaranteed debt and serve as lead entity in the timely transmission of data to the World Bank. The DSBP advised the mission that discussions with the DND to this effect had begun. The mission provided the DND and the DSBP with copies of tables to be completed in connection with the QEDS and encouraged them to utilize data from the Joint External Debt Hub (JEDH) to refine their debt statistics.

Recommendation:

  • Continue discussions with DND to define each stakeholder’s responsibilities in the process of joining the QEDS database and establish a data reporting schedule.

F. Dissemination of External Accounts

56. Balance of payments statistics are published and annotated in the BCRG annual report and its Bulletin of Monetary, Financial, and Balance of Payments Statistics. The bulletin is available in April of the following year. In addition, the BCRG publishes regularly updated balance of payments statistics on its website (Annex VI). However, the annual IIP and quarterly external accounts statistics are not published on its website. The table updated March 9, 2018, available on the BCRA website (as at July 16, 2018) does not indicate the currency of the amounts presented.

57. According to the General Data Dissemination System, the annual balance of payments and IIP should be disseminated from six to nine months after the end of the reference year. Without prejudice to the contribution to the Bulletin of Monetary, Financial, and Balance of Payments Statistics, the DSBP could set itself a maximum of nine months to produce the final balance of payments and IIP statistics, which could be analyzed in depth in an annual report on the external accounts.

Recommendations:

  • Disseminate the quarterly external accounts;

  • Provide public access to external account data in spreadsheet form via the BCRG website;

  • Enhance the dissemination of external accounts by providing in-depth analyses of external account developments in a detailed annual report.

Guinea: Technical Assistance Report-Report on Technical Assistance Mission on External Sector Statistics
Author: International Monetary Fund. Statistics Dept.