I heard from the owner of the apart-hotel a few posts ago, and the apart-hotel is practically all empty due to the election. Many expected guests have canceled their reservations along with their trips to the Ivory Coast.
These are the times when it’s better to let by month instead of per day. The question is just for how long it will last – back in 2002 it lasted for years. If I’m right in my quite gloomy predictions in the last post, it’s unlikely to go back to normal right after the elections.
The question is for how long the seemingly inevitable post-election violence will last and how severe it will be, and whether the elections will move the Ivory Coast towards stronger democracy, stronger rule of law and a growing economy or not.
I’m pretty optimistic over a 10-20 year horizon, but it’s just impossible to know for the next few years (or few weeks).
In IMF Survey Magazine there was recently an article about “Five Fundamental Changes Are Boosting Growth in Africa”, mentioning “a group of 17 emerging [African] countries [not including the Ivory Coast] that have broken away from the rest of the region and achieved steady economic growth, deepening democracy, stronger leadership, and falling poverty. ”
The five fundamental changes identified are:
1) The rise of democracy and improved governance.
2) Stronger economic policies. Meaning that inefficient state owned monopoly companies no longer control the economy, and that life’s gotten easier for the private sector.
3) The end of the debt crisis.
4) New technologies
5) A new generation of leaders.
A new generation of leaders isn’t looking to come to power anytime soon in the Ivory Coast, but for the rest there is reason for hope at least.