IMF, World Bank & IFI Round-Up

Donors have pledged USD 240 million to help Africa manage its fisheries which green groups say are being depleted by pirates and rapacious foreign trawlers in another blow to the world’s poorest continent, reports Reuters. Conservation group WWF said in a statement on this week that the funding will be used to assist countries’ efforts to better manage their marine fisheries and improve the living conditions of fishing communities. The partnership involves the World Bank, the African Union, WWF and the Food and Agriculture Organization of the United Nations (FAO).

Africa is experiencing relatively strong growth but has failed to make matching progress towards development goals, a report by the Organization for Economic Co-operation and Development (OECD) shows, reports The Financial Times (UK). “The OECD’s annual African Economic Outlook points to a recent improvement in economic performance led by oil-producing countries as a consequence of higher export prices. Growth for the continent as a whole is estimated at 4.9 percent last year and is expected to rise to 5.8 percent this year, while inflation is at historical lows, trade balances in many countries have improved, and windfall gains from high oil and commodity prices have lifted public finances. However, the report finds “limited progress” has been made toward the UN Millennium Development Goals.

African government ministers, bank officials and experts have met in Burkina Faso for the African Development Bank’s (AfDB) annual meetings to discuss job creation, but have come up with few specifics, reports Voice of America. During opening comments May 16 at a symposium on job creation in Ouagadougou, the Executive-Secretary of the Economic Commission for Africa, Abdoulie Janneh, said money is needed. “The commission for Africa estimates that Africa’s infrastructure development would cost USD 20 billion a year,” said Janneh. “In the light of this, there is a need for the World Bank, for the AfDB and other multilateral agencies to scale up their support for the development of Africa’s infrastructure.”

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