Nam upper middle-income classification misleading

The World Bank formula, which divides the country’s Gross Domestic Product by its small population, derives a high per capita income and places the country at a disadvantage.

01 October 2020 | Economics

We support debt for climate swaps and endeavour to create conditions for African research and development to allow locally-relevant innovation to flourish. Hage Geingob, President: Namibia

Namibia has a small population and is endowed with natural resources however, the country faces ongoing impediments to realising its developmental aspirations, said president Hage Geingob.

He made this remarks on the occasion of the high-level event on financing for development in the era of Covid-19 and beyond.

Namibia holds the world class potential for renewable energy through solar and wind, pre-conditions for ‘green’ hydrogen production, Geingob says.

Namibia’s classification as an upper middle-income country presents challenges with regards to mobilising resources to finance the country’s development goals, he added.

Geingob said the World Bank formula, which divides the country’s Gross Domestic Product by its small population, derives a high per capita income and places the country at a disadvantage as such classification fails to account for historic injustices that have resulted in a highly-skewed income distribution.

“It is therefore pertinent that countries with a unique situation, such as ours, should have access to assistance commensurate with our needs,” added the Head of State.

He said as a way to facilitate the needed evolution of country’s economic structure, Namibia aims to develop a suite of innovative financial tools, including green, blue, transition bonds and international carbon credits.

Debt

“We support debt for climate swaps and endeavour to create conditions for African research and development to allow locally-relevant innovation to flourish and we look forward to working closely in designing and refining the menu of options to meet the needs of Namibia and other emerging economies facing similar challenges,” Geingob added.

Furthermore, the president said the onset of the global Covid-19 pandemic has the potential to set back Africa’s fight against poverty by a decade.

He was however quick to say that the scale of economic stimulus packages unleashed as a response to the crisis, presents a once-in-a-generation opportunity to forge new pathways of inclusive development and the creation of new industries that Africa’s uniquely young population so desperately needs. - Nampa

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