Bank Group Approves Côte d’Ivoire’s US$ 517 million Arrears Clearance Package and grants US$ 123 million for Economic and Financial Reforms

06/03/2009
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Tunis, 6 March 2009 – The African Development Bank (AfDB) Group sent a resounding message of support to Côte d’Ivoire on Friday, with the approval of a Global Country Strategy Note (2009-2010), an Arrears Clearance Plan as well as an Economic Reform Support Programme (PAREF). This marks a milestone in the cooperation between the Bank Group and Côte d’Ivoire and paves the way for reengagement of other development partners.

Côte d’Ivoire had, since 2003, accumulated US$ 517 million in debt arrears with the Bank Group as at April 2007 cut-off-date. The country’s clearance of arrears, with the assistance of the Bank Group and its Fragile State Facility, is an instrumental part of an intensive coordinated intervention by development partners, in particular the Bretton Woods Institutions. The aim of this coordinated efforts, in the short term, is to assist the country to reach the HIPC decision point before end March 2009. Under the Heavily Indebted Poor Countries (HIPC) debt relief Initiative, Côte d’Ivoire is entitled to US$ 3 billion in Net present value terms.  

The overall objective of the Bank’s strategy is to assist Côte d’Ivoire move out of its fragile status whilst improving the living conditions of the population. The Strategy will focus on strengthening governance with a notable focus on public finance management as well as developing regional economic infrastructure. Indeed, these two intervention pillars will strengthen the government’s post-crisis agenda and economic reform program. The renewed financial cooperation between the Bank Group and Côte d’Ivoire will also result in a restructuring of the country’s entire projects’ portfolio during the second quarter of 2009.

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*1 UA = US$ 1.46736= CFAF) 761.251 as at 04/03/2009