Measuring the pulse of Economic Transformation in West Africa
West Africa is at the heart of Africa’s transformation. With a projected growth rate of 7.4 per cent in 2014, it is the fastest growing region in the continent. As many of its countries undergo a strong stabilization, emerge from conflict, or even rise to middle income status, the region begins to reap the fruits of its regional and global integration. A global demand for expert opinions and analysis is rising rapidly. Read More
The populations of Togo (7 million) and Switzerland (8 million) are quite similar. Likewise, the area covered by the two countries is not too different – 56,785 km2 for Togo and 41,285 km2 for Switzerland. On the other hand, Togo has 12 times more agricultural labour force than Switzerland and, despite this, Switzerland is well ahead of Togo in terms of consumption of fertilizers per hectare (15 times), number of agricultural machines used on arable area (4,000 times), productivity of cereals per hectare (6 times) and consequently of value added per agricultural worker (32 times) . This means that a kilo of cereal produced in Togo is valued five times (32/6) more when produced in Switzerland due to product quality, compliance with norms and standards and market vicissitudes.
Migrant remittances, namely the money migrants send to their countries of origin from their host countries, are increasingly significant for West Africa.
Operational since 2014, The Togo Revenue Authority (OTR) is a single tax administration body with greater autonomy than a ministerial department. It is the first attempt to unify customs and tax services within the fourteen countries belonging to the CFA franc zone (West African Economic and Monetary Union) and the Central African Economic and Monetary Community.
Whereas tourism is acknowledged as a driver of socio-economic development and growth in Africa, as evidenced in the last African Tourism Monitor, the 2015 edition of the annual report on competitiveness in travel and tourism, released in early May by the World Economic Forum (WEF), points out that West Africa lags behind when it comes to the travel sector. The ten West African countries assessed in the report all appear in the bottom half of the ranking. Cabo Verde, the top-ranked country from the region, ranks 86th out of 141. Guinea recorded the lowest score at 140th, securing the penultimate position in the overall ranking. The eight remaining West African countries are in the bottom quarter, among the least globally competitive countries in terms of tourism
A recent post discussed highlights from the African Economic Outlook 2015 (AEO) report, indicating a difficult scenario for the West African Region, but also some encouraging signs. Indeed, against all odds, the region has demonstrated a palpable dynamism.
- KPMG Africa Blog
- UN Women, West and Central Africa
- The Trade Post | Making international trade work for development
- Institute for Security Studies: West Africa
- Oxfam: West Africa blog
- CGD Policy Blogs | Center For Global Development
- NEPAD blogs | NEPAD
- blogAfrica | allAfrica
- Baobab | The Economist
- United Nations Office for West Africa
- Nasikiliza | World Bank in Africa