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Ousmane Diagana (World Bank): “We do not discourage all subsidies”

By Nicholas Norbrook, Joël Té-Léssia Assoko

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Posted on June 24, 2022 11:44

Ousmane Diagana, the West and Central Africa vice-president of the World Bank explains the Bretton Woods institution’s positioning and priorities on the continent. In this long interview, he pushes back against the familiar critique of rigidity and economic orthodoxy.

Ousmane Diagana was in Paris before heading to Germany for discussions of the Sahel Alliance, which brings together more than 15 bilateral and multilateral development institutions. He was interviewed at the World Bank’s offices in Paris. The Mauritanian-born executive has been in charge of World Bank operations in 22 countries in West and Central Africa since July 2020, overseeing a portfolio of projects worth more than $38bn dollars.

The 30-year veteran of the multilateral institution spoke about the operations of the bank in the Sahel, its policy in terms of subsidies, responses to the agricultural challenges of the continent but also on the issues of education, promotion of national champions and delicate relations with Nigeria. Two weeks before the official launch, in Dakar, of the new financing cycle of the International Development Association — which has brought $93bn dollars in

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