World Bank says Somali economy to grow by 3-4 pct

The Somali economy is projected to grow at an annual rate of between 3 and 4 percent, the World Bank said in a report released on Thursday, according to Xinhua.

According to the World Bank’s third Somalia Economic Update (SEU), the country’s economy grew by an estimated 2.3 percent in 2017, down from 4.4 percent in 2016, reflecting the impact of enormous losses seen in livestock and crop production and exports.

The report said the volume of live animal exports, Somalia’s largest export, accounting for more than 70 percent of export earnings, declined by 75 percent, from 5.3 million animals in 2015 to 1.3 million in 2017.

John Randa, senior economist at the World Bank Macroeconomic, Trade and Investment Global Practice and lead author of the SEU, said Mogadishu needs to continue to build the fiscal buffers to allow greater public investment in basic services.

“To achieve higher growth, Somalia requires an acceleration of structural reforms. Recent efforts to broaden the tax base, enhance compliance, and reduce wasteful expenditures are starting to pay off,” Randa said.

The report said the Somali economy has grown modestly in recent years, and it remains vulnerable to recurrent shocks.

According to the report, Somalia has one of the most active mobile money markets in the world, outpacing most other countries in Africa despite its fragility and underdeveloped financial institutions.

About 155 million transactions, worth 2.7 billion dollars, are recorded per month, the report said.

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