Executive summary

Côte d’Ivoire’s past shows that economic growth has not been sufficiently sustainable to allow the country to achieve emergence: that is to say, progress towards the status of an emerging economy or market. The sustained growth of the 1960-80 period, the Ivorian “miracle”, was followed by a period of long decline. Per capita gross domestic product (GDP) doubled between independence in 1960 and the end of the 1970s. But 15 years later, into the mid-1990s, it receded to its 1960 level and stagnated there until the recent revival.

Growth has been sustained since the end of the 2011 crisis, but the population’s well-being has not greatly improved. Despite substantial economic growth since 2011, per capita income has only risen slightly in recent years, uncertainty surrounds employment prospects and housing conditions remain archaic. Security has recently improved, but the standard of living is still precarious, held back by, among other things, poor education and healthcare and low civic participation.

To achieve emergence by 2020 – as it aims to do – Côte d’Ivoire needs structural transformation and needs to make growth inclusive. Sustainable economic growth requires more diverse structures, based on promising sectors and the creation of more jobs. But growth alone will not suffice. Its benefits must be shared more evenly among the population to raise living standards and material conditions. It must be made inclusive enough to increase overall well-being.

The Multi-dimensional Review of Côte d’Ivoire aims to support the elaboration of a development strategy for Côte d’Ivoire’s emergence by 2020. Achieving sustained and inclusive growth calls for an ambitious national development vision. The Multi-dimensional Country Review (Multi-dimensional Review of Côte d’Ivoire) backed the idea of defining a vision for emergence, the characteristics of which served to guide the review’s quantitative analysis and full assessment of development obstacles. This work was the basis of an in-depth analysis of the main development constraints which, once removed, should significantly accelerate the country’s development.

Government efforts must focus on removing the main development obstacles in order to create a solid base underlying the competitiveness of the economy. Sustainable development, inclusive growth and structural transformation of the economy require several things. These include:

  • efficient agriculture and high-potential agro-industrial sectors which drive growth

  • a diversified industrial sector creating jobs and with a good production infrastructure

  • mineral resources that contribute to economic growth

  • a service sector in harmony with the modernisation of the economy

  • small and medium-sized enterprises (SMEs) forming a dynamic basis of the economy

  • creation of added value through innovation

  • an encouraging investment climate for the private sector

  • established quality standards

  • robust competition

  • easier trading conditions

  • good use of the potential of land

  • economic development spread over the entire country

To improve and develop nationwide infrastructure Côte d’Ivoire needs:

  • access to key infrastructure for emergence made easier for the whole population

  • competitive infrastructure

  • financially sustainable infrastructure.

Côte d’Ivoire must also encourage funding of the private sector, growth of SMEs and boost financial inclusion. This requires:

  • lower and better-evaluated credit risk

  • a more effective system of guarantees

  • increased national savings with longer maturity

  • better financial inclusion through new and simpler use of banks

  • greater public confidence in the banking system

  • alternative funding sources to banks

Improving education and providing skilled workers who meet labour market requirements:

  • better primary and lower secondary education results, in terms both of attendance and the acquisition of skills

  • technical training that supplies the workforce with the skills needed for economic transformation

  • bridging child education shortfalls with adult education.

In conclusion, the country needs a tax system that reduces distortions and generates more revenue to fund growing national needs. This means:

  • an effective tax administration

  • broader and simpler taxation

  • a more efficient tax system.

Good implementation and monitoring and evaluation of reforms are vital if Côte d’Ivoire is to achieve the status of emergent economy/country. A well-designed development strategy must allow the monitoring and assessment of the effectiveness of government policy and allow political decision-makers regularly to re-evaluate and readjust reforms so they can be best applied. The MDCR highlights the risks of applying these measures that could make them less effective. It also proposes a scorecard to follow the progress made and to be used as a basis for assessing the changes needed for achieving emergence by 2020.