Cape Verde to join group of Medium Developed Countries in 2008

28 November 2005

Praia, Cape Verde, 28 Nov – Cape Verde will leave the group of the world’s Least Developed Countries (LDC) and join the group of Medium Developed Countries (MDC) in 2008 and the World Bank is preparing the move with the government of the African archipelago, officials have said.

According to Portuguese news agency Lusa the World Bank aims to find, “new ways of attracting financing to the islands,” after the country has reached the level of MDC, a move which will lead to a significant reduction of support for the development of Cape Verde from the international community.

The World Bank’s current mission to Cape Verde, which began Friday, is led by Guinea Bissau’s Paulo Gomes, the World Bank’s director for West Africa.

Driven by international funding Cape Verde has reached levels of human development that allow it to move into the MDC group, according to the criteria of the United Nations (UN) Economic and Social Council (ECOSOC), but with this new status the nation will no longer receive the funding that made it possible for it to develop over the last few years.

According to Lusa, Paulo Gomes is discussing new ways of attracting investment with the Cape Verde government and the “classic models” used by the World Bank to support less developed countries “will no longer be applicable to Cape Verde,” after 2008.

Although the UN’s Human Development Index (HDI) points to Cape Verde having reached levels of human development that are unheard of in Africa, the Cape Verde economy still has serious weaknesses, as pointed out by the World Bank and official statistics.

According to Lusa’s report, one of the models that may be used by the World Bank may be the use “hybrid instruments”, which are the type of financing usually reserved for Latin American countries “combined with the instruments applied to less developed countries”.

The World Bank has set 22 January and 12 February as dates to hold a workshop to discuss the formulation of the project for the country’s infrastructure support program. (macauhub)