Adjustment in Africa: Lessons from Country Case Studies

Adjustment in Africa: Lessons from Country Case Studies

Adjustment in Africa: Lessons from Country Case Studies

Adjustment in Africa: Lessons from Country Case Studies

Synopsis

This collection of case studies focuses on the processes and outcomes of reform programs in seven African countries--C¿¿te d'Ivoire, Ghana, Kenya, Nigeria, Senegal, and Tanzania--chosen for the wide variety of conditions present before their individual adjustment programs began. The World Bank's recent policy research report Adjustment in Africa: Reforms, Results, and the Road Ahead concludes that the adjustment programs launched in 29 countries in the mid-1980's have resulted in some improvement in the overall policy environment. These improvements have been strongest in the macroeconomic and agricultural spheres and weakest in the areas of finance and public enterprise. The study also finds that reform programs work in the countries where policy performance has been good; conversely, poor policy progress has been reflected in poor performance. This volume presents case studies of seven country experiences to supplement and reinforce findings from the Policy Research Report. The studies confirm that whenever adjustment programs are vigorously pursued, results are strongly positive from the viewpoints of growth and alleviation of poverty. A key element in ensuring a successful adjustment program is strong motivation and commitment by the leadership in each nation. Too many abrupt, unpredictable, and frequent changes and reversals of policies erode the credibility of the programs, intensify the uncertainties, and slow down investor confidence. In short, the success of reforms hinges on policy stability, continuity, and predictability.
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