Macroeconomic and Developmental Indicators

Sectors driving growth in Benin

Benin Economic Outlook

For the period 2014-19, Benin posted an average real growth rate of 5.1%, exceeding the average growth rate of ECOWAS (4.5%). In 2019, economic activity contracted slightly by 0.1 % compared to the level in 2018. In terms of prospects, Benin’s economic activity in 2020 looks promising with an expected real GDP of 6.7%.

Over the same period, Benin recorded an average annual per capita GDP of US$ 2812.3, higher than the ECOWAS average of US$ 2753.4. Since 2015, Benin has recorded a steady increase in per capita GDP. At the same time, the population has grown with an average rate of 2.8 % and the country is still classified as a country with a low Human Development Index. In 2015, the poverty rate was set at 40.1% of the population and the GINI index measuring income inequality was estimated at 47.8%.

Inflation remained moderate and well below the 3% of GDP threshold set by WAEMU convergence criteria. Regarding the fiscal balance, Benin was unable to meet the convergence criterion (≥ -3% of GDP) between 2015 and 2017. However, the country’s performance in terms of easing the budget deficit has been outstanding over the last two years, with a budget deficit of 3% of GDP in 2018 and 2.3% of GDP in 2019.

Between 2014-19, Benin’s public debt rose steadily until 2018, reaching 41% of GDP. In 2019, it fell by 0.1 % compared to the previous year. Despite this upward trend, the level of debt remains within the threshold (≤ 70% of GDP) set by the WAEMU convergence criteria. Over this period, the current account showed an average deficit of 6.8% of GDP. The credit to the private sector fluctuated during the last six years, with an average annual increase of 6.2%. In terms of business environment, Benin is ranked 149th out of 190 countries on the 2019 World Bank Ease of Doing Business Survey.

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