US policies have affected the global economy – World Bank

World Bank Executive Director for the 21 Member Africa Group One Constituency Andrew Bvumbe says the expansionary policy stance adopted by the United States of America, the world’s largest economy, coupled with tightening global financial markets and a growing trend of trade protectionist policies, have had spill-over effects on global growth output; including Sub-Saharan Africa.

Presenting the World Bank Africa Group 1 Constituency Annual Report, the World Bank Executive Director projected Zambia’s end of year Gross Domestic Product [GDP] at 4.1% against an average of 2.6% for the Constituency.

He said to end poverty in sub-Saharan Africa, individual countries needed to implement fiscal consolidation policies, improve domestic resource mobilisation and make firm commitments towards sustainable debt management.

Mr. Bvumbe further stated that for member countries to win the battle against poverty, private sector led economic transformation and diversification needs to be fostered through quality investments in human capital, agriculture, infrastructure, and regional integration initiatives.

The Executive Director also announced that the World Bank International Development Association [IDA] 18 Mid-Term-Review will be held in Livingstone, Zambia, next month.

He stated that, “the Livingstone event will also see the launch of IDA 19 discussions which will focus on private sector window, special themes, and IDA’s new financing model,” and added that, “IDA 19 replenishment negotiations will take place in 2019.”

Under IDA 18, Zambia has a facility of USD 600 million from the World Bank of which only USD 50 million has been accessed and the rest needs to be accessed within the next eighteen months.

Contributing during the plenary, Zambia’s Minister of Finance MARGARET Mwanakatwe, who arrived in Bali last night, said the assessment of individual country’s debt sustainability done by multi-lateral organisations and rating agencies, needs to take into account the programme gestation periods and time-lags for achieving tangible return on investments, especially for infrastructure related loan obligations.

She was accompanied to the constituency meeting by Minister of Development Planning Alexander Chiteme, Secretary to the Treasury Fredson Yamba, Deputy Secretary to the Cabinet for Finance and Economic Development Christopher Mvunga, and Ministry of Finance Permanent Secretary for Economic Management Mukuli Chikuba.

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