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World Bank tells Tajikistan to accelerate reforms or miss poverty reduction target

Wednesday 29 June 2011

(RIA) – Tajikistan needs to implement a bolder reform program or it will fail to meet poverty reduction targets, the World Bank said on Monday.

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Country economic memorandum : Tajikistan’s quest for growth – stimulating private investment

That warning was incorporated in a report titled Tajikistan’s Quest for Growth: Stimulating Private Investment and was published by the lender’s local representative office, the RIA Novosti news agency reported on Tuesday.

The Dushanbe government and World Bank agreed on a 40% poverty target for next year. Some 47% of Tajiks lived in poverty in 2009, a great improvement over 2003 when the figure stood at 72%. But the report said the Central Asian state would find it difficult to advance without accelerating its economic reform program as there are no more reserves for post-conflict and post-crisis recovery in the state coffers.

The economy of Tajikistan, the poorest of the 15 former Soviet countries, was devastated by a civil war in the 1990s and battered again during the global economic crisis of 2008-9. Tajikistan is not recovering quickly enough from the global financial downturn to reduce poverty, the World Bank said. The international lender suggested that the Tajik government focus on reforming its agriculture, education, and heath care sectors, along with water and energy facilities, public infrastructure and administration.

The GDP rose in 2010 by 6.5% thanks to a boost in electricity output, a step up in the construction of infrastructure, higher export earnings, and a greater value of remittances from Tajik migrant workers. The bank advised the Tajik government that this figure would be reduced further if the government speeds reforms that aim to double GDP by the end of this decade.

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