Sustaining growth and structural transformation in Africa: how can a stable and efficient financial sector help?

Policy Essays

By Dirk Willem te Velde,  Stephany Griffith-Jones, Governor Wampah, Stephen Spratt, Ricardo Gottschalk, Isabella Massa, Francis M. Mwega, Olu Ajakaiye, Sheriffdeen Tella, Charles Ackah, Usha Thorat, Helmut Reisen, Christina Wolf, Akio Hosono and Thorsten Beck

 Most leading experts are in agreement that a stable and efficient financial sector is critical in helping to sustain growth and structural transformation in Africa. However, countries face many challenges, from weak financial sector support to the real sector, to a lack of adequate competition in the banking sector. And according to the Governor of the Bank of Ghana, the sector’s development is “like a two-edged sword" and requires robust financial policies and regulatory frameworks to work. 

So what does it take to build a stable and efficient financial sector? What features in financial sector development can support low-income countries (LICs) to structurally transform their economies? And what questions still need further research to help decision-makers?

These policy essays explore the background to this debate, African experiences from Ghana, Nigeria and Kenya, lessons from Asia, and discuss future research agenda.