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President João Lourenço’s mission impossible: Fixing Angola’s economy

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This article is part of the dossier:

João Lourenço’s Angola

By Estelle Maussion

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Posted on May 20, 2021 22:20

Elected president in 2017 on the promise of delivering an economic miracle, João Lourenço has faced challenges with regard to debt, privatisation, Covid-19. Not to mention intense criticism, even from within his own political party.

This is part 5 of a 6-part series.

Angola’s President João Lourenço, at the helm of Africa’s second-largest oil producer, agreed to take on the ‘ mission impossible’ of reforming Angola’s economy. The problem is, unlike agent Ethan Hunt, the fictional character played by Hollywood actor Tom Cruise, he is unsure of his ability to succeed.

Since he took office in 2017, Lourenço – the successor of José Eduardo dos Santos and fellow member of the political party Movimento Popular de Libertação de Angola (MPLA) – has faced enormous obstacles.

While acknowledging that Lourenço is facing a very difficult situation and inherited a complicated legacy, we had hoped for better results, especially in the social sphere.”

The year 2020 marked the country’s worst recession on record (the economy shrank 5.1%, according to government figures) since independence and its fifth consecutive year of reporting

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