A regional workshop on Gross Domestic Product (GDP) breakdown organized by the African Development Bank (AfDB) Group’s statistics department recently took place in Dakar, Senegal. Chaired by the country’s Minister of the Economy and Finance, Abdoulaye Diop, the workshop, which brought together national accounting experts from across the region, was held within the framework of the International Comparison Program for Africa.
The workshop enabled participants to finalize and validate GDP weightings for 2005 which is the base year. Participants also reviewed and examined responses to questions on metadata. They used the occasion to report on previous national accounts surveys and carried out additional training on data validation mechanisms. The workshop was also an opportunity for participants to update their reports.
Speaking during the workshop, AfDB Resident Representative in Senegal, Mohamed H’Midouche, commended Bank Group partners such as the World Bank, DFID, ACBF, Norway and Japan as well as Africa’s technical partners - INSEE-France and ONS-UK - who helped in the implementation of the program in Africa. He assured participants of the Bank Group’s determination to monitor the implementation of their recommendations.
Also speaking on the occasion, Mr. Mamadou Dia, Technical Adviser at the Economy and Finance Ministry, indicated that with the production of a final report including metadata, Africa would provide better quality and more reliable data on African countries. He also indicated that work relating to GDP breakdown would be incorporated in Senegal’s national accounting operations.
At the end of the workshop, participants recommended that participating countries finalize their national audits and country reports and integrate ICP-Africa operations in their transactions. They also called on AfDB to organize a training session on the calculation of Purchasing Power Parity (PPA), continue with capacity building in the area of statistics in different countries in collaboration with sub-regional organizations, and evaluate ICP-Africa’s current cycle. Participants also called on sub-regional organizations to continue playing an important role in the implementation of ICP-Africa activities.
Participants used the occasion to draw up a short term roadmap which calls on countries to send their reports to sub-regional organizations within a week. The roadmap also urges these countries to send questionnaires on metadata to sub-regional organizations to enable the Bank Group use these documents in August 2007. The roadmap also calls on the Bank Group to organize, in collaboration with sub-regional organizations, a meeting to review and validate sub-regional reports as well as a workshop in October 2007 on ICP-Africa methodology and results.
According to Luc Mbong Mbong, Principal Statistician at the Bank Group, in implementing the roadmap, the Bank Group’s statistics department will, at the beginning of September 2007, organize a one-week technical workshop to finalize the results of the Dakar workshop which will serve as input into the ICP-Africa final report that the Bank Group is currently preparing.