IMF team sees current, future economic growth in Benin

An International Monetary Fund (IMF) Article IV consultation with Benin that ended late last week revealed significant economic growth in 2015, as well as low inflation and low debt.

The consultation was done by a team made up of members of the IMF Executive Board. When a nation becomes part of the IMF, these consultations, which are usually done annually, are required. During the visits, IMF board members evaluate an IMF member nation's economic and financial health, and often meet with government and economic officials.

Benin's economic growth over the past year was 5 percent, and it is anticipated that the nation's gross domestic product (GDP) will increase by 5.5 percent in 2016. One obstacle to Benin's economic growth could be the economic decline in Nigeria, Benin's main trading partner.

The number of bonds issued in Benin in 2015 was higher than normal; officials did this to be able to finance higher investment spending. IMF officials suggested concentration on investments that were sustainable and more inclusive to reduce the nation's poverty. They also urged officials to revamp fiscal-policy management and suggested improvements to the nation's business sector and judicial system.

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