Punam Chuhan-Pole is Lead Economist in the Office of the Chief Economist of the Africa Region, World Bank.
Liberia Slipping Economically - Africa Pulse Report
By Ballah M. Kollie
MONROVIA, September 29 (LINA) – Liberia has been labeled as one of several African countries slipping economically.
This revelation is part of the bi-annual Africa Pulse report released Thursday by the World Bank in Washington DC and refers to several countries on the continent, including Liberia.
The countries with slipping economies include Botswana, Gambia, Madagascar, Sierra Leone, South Africa, Angola, Cape Verde, Chad, Equatorial Guinea, Nigeria and Liberia.
The report notes that factors for the slip range from drop in the prices of export commodities to the outbreak of diseases, among others.
In the case of Liberia, the country was in 2014 hit by decline in the prices of traditional export products of iron ore and rubber coupled with the Ebola outbreak in March 2014 that claimed the lives of nearly 5,000 people and scared away some investors.
The Africa Pulse report is released twice a year and provides an analysis of the economic trends and data for the region.
According to the report, after slowing down to 3 percent in 2015, economic growth in Sub-Saharan Africa is expected to decline further to 1.6 percent in 2016, the lowest level in over two decades.
The report attributes the decline in aggregate growth to challenges in the economic conditions in the region’s largest economies and commodity exporters.
“Many of these countries continue to face headwinds from low commodity prices, tight financial conditions, and domestic policy uncertainties, while economic activity has been notably weak across oil exporters,” the report recorded.
At the same time, economic growth in about a quarter of the region’s countries is showing signs of resilience, the report said.
The report said while Liberia and other countries are slipping in economic growth, some countries including Ethiopia, Rwanda, and Tanzania have continued to post annual average growth rates of over 6 percent with Côte d’Ivoire and Senegal becoming top performers.