Boston, MA -- (ReleaseWire) -- 02/20/2014 -- Cote d'Ivoire's economy will continue to expand rapidly over the coming years, with real GDP growth averaging 8.9% annually between 2014 and 2018. High public investment and a buoyant consumer segment will be the main drivers of growth, while ongoing reforms to the business climate should see foreign investment continue to accelerate.
The combination of stagnating cocoa production and soaring demand for consumer and capital goods imports will see Cote d'Ivoire maintain a moderate current account shortfall over the coming years. Robust FDI inflows, however, should ensure that the deficit is adequately covered.
The government has put political reconciliation at the top of the agenda in 2014. While this, together with the more conciliatory rhetoric seen from both sides of late, is an encouraging sign, we believe that meaningful progress on this front is unlikely over the near term.
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Major Forecast Changes
A historical revision made by the UN's statistical authorities to Cote d'Ivoire's 2012 headline GDP figure, from 9.8% to 8.6%, has had modest knock-on effects for our short-term growth projections. We are now predicting real GDP growth of 8.7% in 2014 compared with 8.2% previously.
Key Risks To Outlook
The country's positive economic prospects remain heavily contingent on political stability, and any notable deterioration in this area would pose a major threat to the nation's recovery. Political tensions remain high, and BMI does not believe that any substantial progress towards integrating opposition supporters into the political process is likely in the short term.
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