Senegal

Senegal

Senegal, officially the Republic of Senegal, is continental Africa’s westernmost country. It is bordered by Mauritania to the north, Mali to the east, and Guinea-Conakry and Guinea-Bissau to the south, and the Atlantic Ocean to the west. Dakar is the capital city. 

High grades of gold and phosphates can be found in Senegal. Gold deposits are concentrated in the southeast of the country, in the region of Kédougou along the border with Guinea and Mali. While phosphates deposits are found along Senegal’s northeast border with Mauritania, in central Senegal (Thiès, Diourbel and Louga) and in the western part of the Casamance region, south of the Gambia. The Matam area, in the northeast, is home to the largest deposits: proven reserves of 40 million metric tonnes, and further estimated reserves of 100 million metric tonnes. 

Senegal’s economy is driven by mining, construction, tourism, fisheries and agriculture, which are the primary sources of employment in rural areas. The country's key export industries include phosphate mining, fertilizer production, agricultural products and commercial fishing and Senegal is also working on oil exploration projects. It relies heavily on donor assistance, remittances and foreign direct investment. Senegal reached a growth rate of 7% in 2017, due in part to strong performance in agriculture despite erratic rainfall. President SALL unveiled an ambitious economic plan, the Emerging Senegal Plan (ESP), which aims to implement priority economic reforms and investment projects to increase economic growth while preserving macroeconomic stability and debt sustainability. Bureaucratic bottlenecks and a challenging business climate are among the perennial challenges that may slow the implementation of this plan. Senegal receives technical support from the IMF under a Policy Support Instrument (PSI) to assist with implementation of the ESP. The PSI implementation continues to be satisfactory as concluded by the IMF’s fifth review in December 2017. Financial markets have signaled confidence in Senegal through successful Eurobond issuances in 2014, 2017, and 2018. The government is focusing on 19 projects under the ESP to continue The government’s goal under the ESP is structural transformation of the economy. Key projects include the Thiès-Touba Highway, the new international airport opened in December 2017, and upgrades to energy infrastructure. The cost of electricity is a chief constraint for Senegal’s development. Electricity prices in Senegal are among the highest in the world. Power Africa, a US presidential initiative led by USAID, supports Senegal’s plans to improve reliability and increase generating capacity.

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