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Strengthening Social Protection for Emergencies like Drought
On a windy, dusty afternoon in Qibing in Lesotho, Tsiliso Mokhele sat around with his family, the adults among them covering their faces to keep the dust from their eyes. “We normally experience such dusty...
Pourquoi est-il important de suivre la qualité des politiques et des institutions en Afrique ?
OUAGADOUGOU, le 24 juillet, 2017—Les pays africains continuent de résister à une conjoncture économique difficile, notamment à des termes de l’échange dégradés, à une croissance mondiale molle et à des problèmes internes. En 2016, la croissance régionale a été insuffisante pour améliorer le produit intérieur brut (PIB) par habitant, et la pauvreté touche encore près de 41 % de la population de l’Afrique. Cependant, des pays montrent une certaine résilience économique. C’est le cas de la Côte d’Ivoire, de l’Éthiopie, du Kenya, du Rwanda, du Sénégal et de la Tanzanie, qui se caractérisent par des politiques et des institutions de meilleure qualité et en faveur d’une croissance solidaire et durable. Ils sont ainsi mieux à même de faire face aux chocs économiques. Dans notre dernière Évaluation des politiques et des institutions nationales (CPIA) en Afrique, nous nous penchons sur les performances de l’Afrique subsaharienne pour proposer un cadre que la région pourra utiliser en vue de remédier à ses carences politiques et institutionnelles et suivre les progrès réalisés. Cette année, la CPIA dresse un état des lieux assez préoccupant de la gestion économique, des politiques structurelles, des politiques d’inclusion sociale et d’équité, ainsi que de la gestion du secteur public. En effet, même si certains pays continuent d’afficher de bons résultats, comme le Rwanda, le Sénégal et le Kenya, il est indéniable que la situation tend à se détériorer, ce qui indique que les réformes des politiques et des institutions sont trop lentes. Les États fragiles, tout particulièrement, restent aux prises avec une multitude de problèmes qui compromettent l’efficacité des réformes des politiques et le renforcement des institutions nationales. Les États fragiles d’Afrique accusent toujours un retard sur ceux des autres régions du monde, surtout pour ce qui concerne la qualité de leurs institutions publiques et l’inclusion sociale (notamment l’égalité entre les sexes). À l’heure où les pays, les organisations de développement et les organisations internationales unissent leurs forces dans l’objectif de mobiliser un financement sans précédent pour le développement de l’Afrique, les constats de la CPIA peuvent guider les efforts visant à renforcer les politiques et les institutions publiques locales. Les pays d’Afrique devraient utiliser des outils de suivi tels que la CPIA pour améliorer leurs performances dans différents domaines : politiques publiques, transparence, efficacité des services publics, inclusion sociale et gestion économique. Grâce au système de notation et à la méthodologie de la CPIA, ils peuvent comparer les progrès qu’ils ont accomplis au fil des ans, mais aussi par rapport aux pays voisins ou aux pays dont la situation économique ou sociopolitique est similaire. Cette comparaison peut permettre d’explorer plus avant et de mettre en œuvre des politiques et des réformes propices à de réels changements positifs et durables. Depuis 1980, les notes de la CPIA sont utilisées pour déterminer l’allocation de prêts à taux zéro et de dons aux pays éligibles au soutien de l’Association internationale de développement (IDA), l’institution du Groupe de la Banque mondiale qui apporte des financements à des conditions de faveur. Elles servent également de baromètre, qui peut influer sur la confiance des investisseurs et sur la perception du risque. Des institutions solides et des opérations publiques transparentes, au service de la population, sont essentielles pour que le continent africain mette pleinement à profit les opportunités commerciales et de développement offertes par des initiatives telles que l’IDA 18, le partenariat « Compact with Africa » du G20 ou l’Alliance du Sahel, récemment constituée. Nous espérons que toutes nos études et analyses reposant sur des données factuelles, comme la CPIA, aideront l’Afrique à améliorer nettement l’efficacité de ses politiques et la qualité de ses institutions, avec, à la clé, de meilleurs résultats de développement et la prospérité pour tous les Africains. La dernière édition de la CPIA fait le point sur la situation et présente les notes les plus récentes obtenues par les pays d’Afrique. 
CSOs serve as bridges to improving delivery and accountability of services
When Meseret Cherkos gave birth in the maternity ward at Addis Hiwot Health Center in 2016, her friends and family came to visit. In the bright, sunlit recovery room, the clinic staff prepared genfo, a traditional Ethiopian porridge, and held a coffee ceremony to celebrate the arrival of her baby. Addis Hiwot used not to be so welcoming: opened in 2012, the health clinic is in Gulele in the northern section of Ethiopia’s capital, Addis Ababa. It has a catchment area that includes some of the city’s most underprivileged communities but, despite the area’s desperate need for health services, in its early years, Addis Hiwot did not enjoy a good reputation.   “We didn’t like to come here because the service was so poor,” said Meseret. The health center was short on staff and frequently ran out of medicine and water. Power outages were common, and a disorganized registrar system meant patients had to wait a long time before they could see a doctor. Mistrust was also rife between health center staff and their patients, fueled by stories of medical malpractice. Meseret herself had experienced trauma in 2012, when her first pregnancy turned out to be a still birth. “The doctor at the health center didn’t realize the baby had already died, and sent me to a referral hospital in another part of the city. I learned there that the baby had already passed away.”   Using Trust Funds In 2013, the Addis Ababa Women’s Association, as part of the World Bank-supported Ethiopian Social Accountability Program (ESAP), chose to partner with Addis Hiwot to improve the quality of its services. By design, ESAP uses Civil Society Organizations (CSOs) to arbitrate the relationship between government service providers and the communities they serve as a way of fostering greater government accountability. The program works with over 110 CSOs in 233 woredas (districts) across Ethiopia, in schools, clinics, and other settings. The CSOs that participate in the program first work to sensitize communities so that everyone, including the most vulnerable women and children, are made aware of their right to better services. CSOs then meet with service providers and community groups separately so that each can identify the issues they would most like to address. After this, the CSOs host consultations, during which community members and service providers meet, face to face, to discuss the issues. “The hardest part of the process is building trust, that takes the longest time,” said Mussie Yasin, project coordinator for the Addis Ababa Women’s Association. “During the initial meetings at Addis Hiwot, all of our discussions were ‘heated’.” Community members accused doctors of misdeeds, and the doctors felt attacked and responded in a defensive manner. “But after a while, the tone changed, and the consultations began to be about finding solutions to the problems together.” Midwives and other inputs These efforts culminated in the creation of a joint action plan, which community members and health staff worked on together to put into place their desired changes at the clinic. A power generator was installed, as well as a water pump. A participatory budgeting exercise led to a bigger budget being set aside for medicine. More midwives were recruited, so that fewer mothers got referred to other hospitals. These, and other changes, have led to Addis Hiwot being recognized as a model health center: since 2013, the number of patients who visit the clinic daily has tripled, and there has also been a jump in the number of women who opt to give birth there (from three a week in 2013, to 17 a week in 2017). The clinic scored 87 percent in its most recent Customer Satisfaction Survey.  “Prior to this program, doctors used to resist feedback from their patients,” said Yehualashet Mekuria, director of the clinic. “But now there is attitudinal change; doctors see that you get more done when you involve the community. Our rapport has improved so much, we get requests saying we should provide more services, like minor surgeries.” Given Addis Hiwot’s success with “social accountability,” the woreda administration has set aside a budget to scale up the approach to other activities, such as improvements in schools and sanitation. Alex Kamurase, Task Team Leader for ESAP, says the evolution in policy dialogue on social accountability, and results at the point of service delivery over the last eight years, are ways in which the Government of Ethiopia can make social accountability more systematic at local levels in woredas and kebeles (neighborhoods). He said the government had now laid out a roadmap for medium-term expansion, designing a third phase of the program. “Living and working in Ethiopia for the last four years gives me the conviction that this is doable,” said Kamurase. 
As Natural Disasters Rise, Countries Call for Action on Resilient Crisis Recovery Planning
Twenty million people across Africa and the Middle East are currently facing famine from a prolonged drought. Some affected countries, including Somalia, South Sudan, and Yemen, have more in common than vulnerability to recurring natural disasters and a changing climate – they also struggle with fragile political systems ravaged by conflict. Disasters like this can cripple any country and erase hard-fought development gains. To prevent such devastation, whether social or economic, an effective framework for recovery must be in place before a disaster strikes. Such provisions are even more important in conflict-affected states, and are the focus of the third edition of the World Reconstruction Conference (WRC3) starting today and running through June 8, taking place in Brussels in conjunction with European Development Days 2017. “For the World Bank, preparing countries to ably address risk and ‘build back better’ from disasters and conflict is central to our goal of sustainable development,” said Cyril Muller, Vice President of the World Bank’s Europe and Central Asia Region. “The World Reconstruction Conference is an important event for the World Bank to help further cement this shift toward planning for crisis situations and strengthening recovery systems in advance of a disaster.” Ethiopia is an example of resilient crisis recovery planning.  A country no stranger to drought, Ethiopia is acknowledging the importance of preparation and has a plan to fight famine before it starts. Armed with hard-learned lessons from previous droughts, the government, with World Bank support, has established one of the world’s largest safety-net programs, alongside other mechanisms, and can quickly expand coverage in times of crisis, protecting even its poorest residents. Committed to action on disaster and conflict recovery, development partners including the World Bank-managed Global Facility for Disaster Reduction and Recovery (GFDRR), the European Union (EU), and the United Nations (UN) established the World Reconstruction Conference (WRC) in 2011. Since the forum was first established, there has been a shift in how the international community, including GFDRR and the World Bank, approaches recovery. Rather than focusing on reconstruction alone, governments now integrate reducing disaster risk into long-term planning. Furthering this work, the second WRC helped bring sharper focus on resilient recovery and "building back better" of the Sendai Framework to reduce vulnerabilities. “The fragility situation in many parts of the world is becoming seriously exacerbated, and the impact of disasters due to natural hazards is increasing in magnitude and severity,” said Sameh Wahba, World Bank Director of Urban and Territorial Development, Disaster Risk Management, and Resilience. “From 2012 to 2014, 994 disasters affected more than 326 million people across the globe. Costs of physical damage caused by disasters are rising – from an estimated US$20 billion on average per year in the 1990s to about US$100 billion per year in the first decade of this century.”  Wahba added that “The World Reconstruction Conference is a call for action to prepare in advance for better disaster and crisis recovery, especially in fragile countries, and to up our game given the high stakes in terms of saving lives, livelihoods, and reducing economic impact. The World Bank and GFDRR are committed to supporting countries in focusing on this agenda.”
For Ethiopia’s farmers, landscape management and tenure lead to more resilience and income
“You have to see it to believe it,” said Abraha Hagos, an Orthodox priest and a father of ten who lives in Tigray region’s Enderta woreda (district) in northern Ethiopia. Now he has yields that are double what he used to have just three years ago. Enderta woreda was once known for its dry and dusty landscape: It struggled with irregular rainfall, drought, and the results of decades of poor land management. Abraha, whose farm is located at the foot of Adi Qilqil mountain, had often let his animals graze freely on the mountainsides, like others in his community. Whenever it rained, the run-off from the overgrazed and degraded hillside used to swamp the farms below. “I used to complain, ‘how can we develop’?” said Abraha. “In addition to the flooding, most of the springs in the area had dried up, and the soil on my farm was like crushed rock. It couldn’t hold water.” He tried to come up with ideas to improve his farm, like digging a deep well. But he was reluctant to make such a large investment or to ask his neighbors to contribute to the expense. Neither he nor the other farmers had legal proof of land rights to their farms. And, because of this, Abraha, like many others, worried that his land might one day be appropriated. Therefore, he believed investing in the costly process of digging a deep well to be risky and unsound. Putting communities at the heart of land management In 2015, Abraha, along with other farmers in his kebele (neighborhood), joined the second phase of a program called the Sustainable Land Management Program (SLMP). Originally, the initiative of the Ethiopian government, a larger SLMP program also works to restore degraded lands, organizing the communities that live on them to take part in land restoration by building conservation structures like terraces, water retention pits, trenches and gullies that slow down the flow of water and reduce soil erosion. In doing so, it supports rural infrastructure, such as roads and small irrigation schemes, and opportunities to make a living. “By investing in both landscapes and people, Ethiopia is showing strong leadership in building up its resilience to periodic drought,’’ said Magda Lovei, Practice Manager for Africa at the World Bank’s Environment Global Practice. In Ethiopia, where the government owns all the land, lifetime leases or landholding certificates are used as an incentive to get people to help restore degraded land. The government is also addressing the registration and certification of rural land. Through the second phase of the program (2013–2019), the SLMP2, about 266,000 households have received landholding certificates legally. This number is projected to increase to 500,000 by the end of 2018, with the mapping of the number of land parcels expected to reach over 2 million (4% of the country’s total parcels of land).
New Country Partnership Framework to Support an Inclusive and Equitable Growth Path for Ethiopia
WASHINGTON, June 27, 2017 – Today, the Board of Executive Directors endorsed a new World Bank Group (WBG) five-year Country Partnership Framework (CPF) to support Ethiopia’s development aspirations. The CPF is informed by extensive consultations with a broad range of stakeholders and is in line with priorities outlined in the country’s Growth and Transformation Plan II. Over the past decade, Ethiopia has achieved significant progress in economic, social and human development: The poverty rate has declined from 55 percent in 2000 to 34 percent in 2011. Real GDP growth has averaged 10.5 percent per year between 2003 and 2015, and life expectancy rose from 52 to 65 years.  Ethiopia has also achieved a number of the Millennium Development Goals. However, despite impressive milestones, significant challenges remain. The CPF strives to assist Ethiopia in forging a more inclusive and sustainable growth path. Specifically, the CPF will help promote structural and economic transformation through increased productivity in both rural and urban areas by focusing on basic education, increasing access to markets and creating job opportunities for the youth. It is also designed to help build resilience and inclusiveness (including gender equality) by improving safety nets, investing in productive landscapes, and focusing on the Early Years agenda. The CPF will also support institutional accountability and assist in combating corruption by focusing on improving governance and promoting social accountability.  “The CPF intensifies our support for poverty reduction in Ethiopia and seeks to address key challenges facing the country. Among other things, our interventions will support increased citizen engagement, greater resilience to the effects of climate change, more inclusive growth, and youth employment,” said Carolyn Turk, World Bank Country Director for Ethiopia.  The private sector is expected to be a key contributor to Ethiopia’s future development, and the CPF envisages prominent roles for the International Finance Corporation (IFC) as well as the Multilateral Investment Guarantee Agency (MIGA), World Bank Group institutions that focus exclusively on the private sector. “In the past, Ethiopia’s development model was based on public investment but there are increasing needs and opportunities to unlock the potential of the private sector. IFC’s strategy is to create markets and mobilize private capital, including offering products aimed at de-risking investments to make more investment possible,’’ said Adamou Labara, Country Manager for IFC in Ethiopia.    This CPF aims to tackle challenges to Ethiopia’s quest to achieve lower middle-income status by 2025. In spite of the progress achieved over the past decade, there are still intra-regional disparities in resource endowments and access to services, with pockets of poverty even in relatively well-off areas of the country. Using a spatial approach, efforts will be made to ensure that all regions and people have access to the full range of quality services, from health and education to water supply. Citizen engagement tools (community scorecards, citizen report cards, participatory budgeting) have already proven to be successful in existing WBG financed programs and will be scaled up under the CPF, as part of efforts to improve governance and accountability.  This CPF also marks a departure from the past by placing a greater emphasis on measuring results and the impact of WBG’s interventions. For example: in the energy sector, the aim is to double the number of people with access to electricity; in education, the goal is to achieve better learning outcomes for girls (and achieve gender parity); in agriculture, increasing the proportion of cereal/pulses produced by female-headed households by 60 percent by 2020.    
World Bank Review Reveals a Weakening of Policy and Institutional Performance in Africa
OUAGADOUGOU, July 24, 2017—The quality of policies and institutions weakened in Sub-Saharan Africa in 2016 amid challenging economic conditions, according to the latest review by the World Bank. This weaker trend was observed in 40% of the region’s IDA countries, notably commodity exporters and fragile states. The review is the annual World Bank Country Policy and Institutional Assessment (CPIA) Africa analysis, which scores the progress Sub-Saharan African countries are making on strengthening the quality of their policies and institutions. Since 1980, CPIA ratings have been used to determine the allocation of zero-interest financing and grants for countries that are eligible for support from the International Development Association (IDA)*, the concessional financing arm of the World Bank Group. CPIA scores are based on 16 development indicators in four areas: economic management, structural policies, policies for social inclusion and equity, and public sector management and institutions. Countries are rated on a scale of 1 (low) to 6 (high) for each indicator. The overall CPIA score reflects the average of the four areas of the CPIA. The average CPIA score for the 38 African countries assessed in the 2016 review edged lower to 3.1. Rwanda again led all countries in the region with a score of 4.0, closely followed by Senegal and Kenya, both with a score of 3.8. Although some countries saw a strengthening in policy and institutional quality, the number of countries with worsening overall scores outpaced improvers by a margin of two to one. A common pattern across countries that experienced a weakening in their overall policy and institutional quality was slippage in economic management: monetary and exchange rate, fiscal, and debt policies. This can in part be explained by unfavorable economic conditions—deteriorating terms of trade, sluggish global growth, and difficult economic conditions—that continued to take a toll on countries across the region, deepening macroeconomic vulnerabilities. Weakening of fiscal and external buffers constrained the scope for macroeconomic policies to mitigate the effects of adverse shocks to economic activity. On the upside, Côte d’Ivoire, the Comoros, Cameroon, Guinea, Madagascar, Mauritania, and Sudan have experienced a modest gain in the CPIA score, with most of these countries showing a stronger performance in the quality of governance. In a few countries, the quality of policies for social inclusion and equity also improved, reflecting a strengthening of safety net programs. “Governance underpins all sectors of World Bank Group engagement, and moving forward, despite these slight gains, it will remain critical that Sub-Saharan countries implement or expand governance and public-sector reforms that will upgrade financial management systems, increase transparency, reduce corruption, protect rights, and improve public services,” notes Albert Zeufack, World Bank Chief Economist for Africa. The latest CPIA results reveal that performance on policy and institutional quality in Sub-Saharan Africa’s non-fragile IDA countries is comparable to that of similar countries elsewhere. However, this is not the case for fragile countries, which generally fall behind other fragile countries outside the region. The combination of the two categories of countries pulls the overall CPIA score for the region’s IDA countries below the average for other IDA countries. “African countries exhibiting economic resilience tend to have stronger macroeconomic policy frameworks, better quality of policies that promote sustainable and inclusive growth, and more effective public institutions than other countries,” explains Punam Chuhan-Pole, Lead Economist for the World Bank Africa Region and author of the report. “Nonetheless, there is scope for all countries in the region to speed up policy reforms and strengthen institutional quality.” * The World Bank’s International Development Association (IDA), established in 1960, helps the world’s poorest countries by providing grants and low to zero-interest loans for projects and programs that boost economic growth, reduce poverty, and improve poor people’s lives. IDA is one of the largest sources of assistance for the world’s 75 poorest countries, 39 of which are in Africa. Resources from IDA bring positive change to the 1.5 billion people who live in IDA countries. Since 1960, IDA has supported development work in 113 countries. Annual commitments have averaged about $18 billion over the last three years, with about 54% going to Africa.
Afrique : recul de la performance des politiques et institutions nationales selon l’évaluation de la Banque mondiale
OUAGADOUGOU, 24 juillet 2017—La dernière évaluation des politiques et institutions publiques en Afrique réalisée par la Banque mondiale met en évidence une baisse de la qualité des politiques et des institutions en Afrique subsaharienne dans un contexte marqué par une conjoncture économique mondiale difficile et les difficultés propres à chaque pays. Cette tendance a été observée dans 40 % des pays évalués en 2016 et particulièrement dans certaines catégories de pays, notamment les pays exportateurs de matières premières et les États fragiles. L’Évaluation des politiques et des institutions nationales (plus connue sous son acronyme anglais « CPIA ») est un exercice annuel qui permet à la Banque mondiale de mesurer les progrès accomplis par les pays d’Afrique subsaharienne pour améliorer la qualité de leurs politiques et de leurs institutions. Depuis 1980, les notes de la CPIA déterminent l’allocation de prêts sans intérêts et de dons aux économies éligibles au soutien de l’Association internationale de développement (IDA)*, le fonds du Groupe de la Banque mondiale pourvoyeur de financements concessionnels. Ces notes reposent sur 16 indicateurs de développement dans quatre domaines : la gestion économique, les politiques structurelles, les politiques d’insertion sociale et d’équité, la gestion et les institutions du secteur public. Les pays sont notés sur une échelle de 1 (note la plus faible) à 6 (note la plus élevée) pour chaque indicateur. La note globale étant égale à la moyenne des quatre domaines évalués. La note moyenne pour les 38 pays africains évalués en 2016 a légèrement baissé à 3,1. Avec une note de 4, le Rwanda figure une fois de plus en tête du classement. Il est suivi de près par le Sénégal et le Kenya qui obtiennent tous les deux 3,8. Certes, la qualité de la politique et des institutions s’est renforcée dans certains pays, mais le nombre de pays qui ont vu leurs notes globales se détériorer est deux fois plus important. Les pays dont la qualité de la politique et des institutions a globalement souffert ont pour trait commun une baisse continue de la qualité de la gestion économique, rendue évidente par le recul de la performance dans trois domaines, à savoir la politique monétaire et de change, la politique budgétaire et la politique d’endettement. Cette situation peut s’expliquer en partie par la conjoncture économique défavorable qui exacerbe les faiblesses macroéconomiques de certains pays de la région. La diminution des réserves budgétaires et extérieures empêche les politiques macroéconomiques d’atténuer pleinement les effets de ces chocs sur l’activité économique. La Côte d’Ivoire, les Comores, le Cameroun, la Guinée, Madagascar, la Mauritanie et le Soudan, ont légèrement amélioré leur note de 0,1 point, pour la plupart, grâce à une meilleure gouvernance. La qualité des politiques d’insertion sociale et d’équité s’est aussi améliorée dans quelques pays, ce qui indique un renforcement des programmes de filets sociaux. « La gouvernance sous-tend tous les secteurs dans lesquels intervient le Groupe de la Banque mondiale et en dépit des petites avancées enregistrées, les pays d’Afrique subsaharienne devront mettre en œuvre ou étendre les réformes de la gouvernance et du secteur public afin de moderniser les systèmes de gestion financière, d’accroître la transparence, de réduire la corruption, de renforcer l’État de droit et d’améliorer les services publics », explique Albert Zeufack, économiste en chef pour la région Afrique à la Banque mondiale. Les récents résultats de la CPIA montrent que la qualité des politiques et des institutions dans les pays IDA qui ne sont pas en situation de fragilité en Afrique subsaharienne, est comparable à celle de pays de même niveau de développement dans d’autres régions. Ce n’est malheureusement pas le cas pour les pays fragiles, généralement à la traîne par rapport à leurs homologues d’autres régions. Ces deux catégories de pays IDA d’Afrique subsaharienne mises ensemble obtiennent une note CPIA globale inférieure à la note moyenne des autres pays IDA. « Il apparaît que les pays africains qui montrent une certaine résilience économique sont ceux qui ont mis en place des cadres macroéconomiques plus solides et de meilleures politiques en faveur d’une croissance solidaire et durable », constate Punam Chuhan-Pole, économiste principal pour la région Afrique à la Banque mondiale et auteur du rapport. « Mais tous les pays de la région ont la capacité de renforcer la qualité de leur politique et de leurs institutions. » * L’Association internationale de développement (IDA), une institution de la Banque mondiale fondée en 1960, accorde des dons et des crédits à faibles ou sans intérêts aux pays les plus pauvres afin de les aider à mettre en œuvre des programmes qui stimulent la croissance économique, contribuent à la réduction de la pauvreté et améliorent les conditions de vie des pauvres. L’IDA est l’un des principaux bailleurs d’aide aux 77 pays les plus déshérités du monde, dont 39 se trouvent en Afrique. Les ressources de l’IDA bénéficient concrètement à 1,3 milliard de personnes vivant dans les pays qui bénéficient de ses concours. Depuis sa création, l’IDA a soutenu des activités dans 112 pays. Le volume annuel de ses engagements a représenté en moyenne 19 milliards de dollars au cours des trois dernières années, 50 % de ce montant environ étant destiné à l’Afrique.
Why is it Important to Monitor the Quality of Policies and Institutions in Africa?
OUAGADOUGOU, July 24, 2017—African economies are continuing to weather challenging economic conditions that include weaker terms of trade, sluggish global growth, and difficult domestic conditions. Regional growth in 2016 was insufficient to raise GDP per capita and poverty remains painfully prevalent, affecting 41% of the region’s population. However, some countries are showing economic resiliency, notably Côte d’Ivoire, Ethiopia, Kenya, Rwanda, Senegal, and Tanzania. Resilient countries tend to have better quality policies and institutions that foster sustainable growth and poverty reduction than other countries, allowing them greater flexibility when it comes to formulating policy response to economic shocks. The latest World Bank Country Policy and Institutional Assessment (CPIA) Africa analysis takes a closer look at how Sub-Saharan Africa’s policy and institutional performance is faring in order to present a framework that the region can use to address gaps and monitor their progress. After performing a holistic review of the following areas: economic management, structural policies, policies for social inclusion and equity, and public sector management; this year’s CPIA findings raise some concerns. While there continues to be stand out countries that maintain high scores such as Rwanda, Senegal, and Kenya, there is an undeniable pull downwards indicating that policy and institutional reforms are not happening quickly enough. This remains especially true for fragile countries, which continue to face a myriad of challenges that are hindering effective policy reform and the strengthening of national institutions. Africa’s fragile countries continue to lag fragile countries elsewhere, particularly in regards to the quality of institutions and social inclusion (specifically gender equality).                                            As countries, development institutions, and international organizations rally to mobilize unprecedented financing for Africa’s development, these CPIA findings can inform efforts to strengthen policy and institutional performance. African countries should take advantage of monitoring tools such as the CPIA report to bolster their countries’ performance when it comes to government policies, transparency, effective public services, social inclusion, and economic management. Its scoring system and methodology allow countries to compare their progress to themselves over the years, but also to neighboring countries or countries with similar economies or socio-political situations. Such a comparison can allow for further exploration and implementation of policies and reforms that bring about positive sustainable change. Since 1980, the CPIA ratings have been used to determine the allocation of zero-interest financing and grants for countries that are eligible for support from the International Development Association (IDA), the concessional financing arm of the World Bank Group. They are also a barometer that can impact investor confidence and perceived risk. Strong institutions and transparent government operations working in the service of the people are critical to enabling the continent to fully capitalize on the business and development opportunities presented by initiatives such as the World Bank’s IDA 18 financing envelope, the G20 Compact with Africa, and the recently launched Sahel Alliance just to name a few. By empowering the continent with evidence-based research and analytical works like the CPIA, the hope is that together we can help the region achieve measurable gains in policy performance and improve the quality of its institutions that will lead to better development outcomes and prosperity for all Africans. Consult the latest edition of the CPIA Africa report for the most recent scores and analysis. 
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