Angola’s Minister of Economy and Planning says Relations with the IMF and World Bank Will Sustain Reform Path
A whirlwind of Washington DC hotel lobbies, conference halls and cocktail bars, the IMF and World Bank Spring Meetings are a regular highlight of the development calendar. This year, the meetings seemed to assume a particular significance.
With the world economy in the doldrums and renewed questions over the heavy debt burden facing emerging markets in the post-Covid-19 era, the meetings felt like a chance for policymakers to catch their breath and plot a way forward.
For Mário Augusto Caetano João, Angola’s minister of economy and planning, the trip was certainly that – but also a chance to seal Angola’s maturing ties with multilateral lenders.
Speaking to African Business during a busy round of engagements in DC, where he previously worked for three years as a World Bank advisor, João says that Angola’s shift from a state-planned economy under the presidency of João Lourenço has brought the country into much closer cooperation with the multilaterals.
“It’s true that in the last five or six years our approach with those institutions was more from the side of trying to correct macroeconomic imbalances in Angola, so we didn’t have much time to explore any kind of products or instruments besides macroeconomic assistance. But right now we’re in a very different position. In 2021 we grew 1.1%; in 2022, we expect to grow 3.1% – so we’re in a better position to start exploring the instruments and products available.