Botswana can transform its economy, create jobs, reduce inequality, and achieve a resilient recovery from COVID-19 by increasing private sector participation and investment in its energy, water and sanitation, tourism, and other sectors, according to a new report published the World Bank Group.
The report titled Botswana Country Private Sector Diagnostic (CPSD) highlights opportunities for investment and growth in Botswana and ways the country can achieve a more resilient, green, and sustainable economic future, including through regulatory improvements and diversification.
The CPSD outlines regulatory gaps that hamper competition and productivity and suggests boosting access to finance for smaller businesses and increasing investment in skills development suited to the needs of the job market. The World Bank Group penned the report in conjunction with its member institution in International Finance Corporation.
“The COVID-19 pandemic disrupted economic activity in Botswana and sharply reduced revenues from the diamond and tourism sectors,” said Marie Francoise Marie-Nelly, World Bank Country Director for Botswana, Eswatini, Lesotho, Namibia and South Africa in a recent statement by the World Bank. “The World Bank is committed to supporting the government to enact reforms aimed at attracting private investment to diversify the economy and create jobs.”
IFC’s Senior Country Manager for Botswana Carlos Katsuya said that Botswana’s economy recorded rapid growth in the decades after independence, largely driven by diamond and mineral wealth, but the country experienced limited gains in employment and income equality. “Increasing private sector participation can help to unlock the investment needed to support the country’s economic diversification agenda, create jobs, reduce income inequality, and bolster economic growth,” he said in the statement.