Living on the Edge: A Discussion of the IMF's Sub-Saharan Africa Regional Economic Outlook: Panel 1

IIEP was pleased to host an event titled "Living on the Edge: A Discussion of the IMF's Sub-Saharan Africa Regional Economic Outlook" on Wednesday, November 16th, 2022. This event featured two panels. The first panel, "Building a More Food-Secure Sub-Saharan Africa" will feature IMF presenters Ivanova Reyes (IMF) and Qianqian Zhang (IMF) alongside discussant Moses Kansanga (GW). Catherine Pattillo, a Deputy Director in the IMF’s African Department, provided welcome remarks alongside IIEP Director Steve Suranovic. This event was co-sponsored by the Institute for African Studies.

For more information, see IMF's Regional Economic Outlook Report for October 2022: https://www.imf.org/en/Publications/REO/SSA/Issues/2022/10/14/regional-economic-outlook-for-sub-saharan-africa-october-2022

Sub-Saharan Africa’s (SSA) recovery has been abruptly interrupted. Last year, activity finally bounced back, lifting GDP growth in 2021 to 4.7 percent. But growth in 2022 is expected to slow sharply by more than 1 percentage point to 3.6 percent, as a worldwide slowdown, tighter global financial conditions, and a dramatic pickup in global inflation spill into a region already wearied by an ongoing series of shocks. Rising food and energy prices are impacting the region’s most vulnerable, and public debt and inflation are at levels not seen in decades. Against this backdrop, and with limited options, many countries find themselves pushed closer to the edge. The near-term outlook is extremely uncertain as the region’s prospects are tied to developments in the global economy and with a number of countries facing difficult sociopolitical and security situations at home. Within this challenging environment, policymakers must confront immediate socioeconomic crises as they arise, while also endeavoring to reduce vulnerabilities to future shocks, building resilience. Ultimately, however, the region’s safety and prosperity will require high-quality growth and the implementation of policies that will set the stage for a sustainable recovery, helping countries move away from the edge.

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