The Board of the World Bank Group has on Friday, 27 March, 2020 allocated $379 million in International Development Association (IDA) credits and grants to help harmonise and strengthen statistical systems in 7 West African countries.
The beneficiaries are Burkina Faso, Cape Verde, Cote d’Ivoire, Ghana, Liberia, Sierra Leone and Togo.
The funds are to support the African Union (AU) and the Economic Community of West African States (ECOWAS).
The new project, Harmonising and Improving Statistics in West Africa (HISWA), aims to strengthen the statistical systems of participating countries and regional and sub-regional bodies, in order to help them harmonize, produce, disseminate and enhance the use of core economic and social statistics.
The project is well aligned with the World Bank Group’s Regional Integration and Cooperation Assistance Strategy for Sub-Saharan Africa.
It will help strengthen the link between regional policy commitments and national planning.
Regular population censuses, household surveys, data of social concerns and key economic statistics such as agricultural and enterprise surveys.
This would inform the decision-making process, enable efficient allocation of resources, and assess the effects of development policies and interventions.
Good data are essential to address the socio-economic development challenges facing the West Africa region in general.