AfDB Supports Economic Reforms in Burundi with USD 15 million

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Tunis, Wednesday, 19 May 2010: The African Development Bank (AfDB) Board of Directors has approved a USD 15 million grant from the Fragile States Facility resources to finance Burundi’s Third Economic Reform Support Programme (ERSP III).

This contribution is backed by a program of reforms aimed at improving management quality and strengthening internal and external control of public finances. The contribution will also allow the country to help finance the 2010 budget.

Since 2003, the country has been working to implement a major reform program while consolidating the progress towards a multiparty democratic system. The ERSP-III will therefore be part of the public finance reforms strategy adopted by the Burundi government and supported by other development partners in the country. The ERSP-III will make it possible to cover the entire budget, improve budget documentation, strengthen the public procurement system and strengthen internal and external audit of public finances.

Burundi is a post-conflict country, and one of the poorest in Africa. The Human Development Index (HDI) ranks the country at 174 out of 182 countries in 2009 and about 67% of the population lives below the poverty line. To improve the country’s social conditions, the government intends to increase pro-poor expenditure during the 2010 fiscal year.

These expenses will, among other things, be directed at:

  • Promoting fertilizer, seed and irrigation with a view to improving agricultural productivity,
  • ree health care for children under 5 and pregnant women;
  • Recruiting health workers and teachers,
  • Increasing power-generating and water supply capacity,
  • Reforestation
  • Reintegrating and repatriating refugees.

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