This is the welcome statement of Dr Baba Yusuf Musa, Director General of WAIFEM delivered on 18th September 2023 at the opening ceremony of the regional workshop organised by the West African Institute for Financial and Economic Management (WAIFEM). The event is organised in collaboration with the International Monetary Fund (IMF).
1. I welcome you all to the opening ceremony of the IMF/WAIFEM Regional Workshop on Balance of Payments (BOP) and International Investment Position Statistics. Firstly, I wish to express our utmost
appreciation to the President, Government and the good people of The Gambia for welcoming us to conduct these training programmes here in Banjul. I also bid particular welcome to all participants especially those of you visiting Banjul for the first time and I enjoin you to relax and enjoy the hospitality of the people of “the Smiling Coast of Africa”.
Permit me to specifically express our gratitude to the Governor of the Central Bank of The Gambia, Honourable Buah Saidy and his management team for the excellent logistical support provided for the smooth organization of these workshops. I also wish to register our profound gratitude to the International
Monetary Fund (IMF) and the Statistics Department in particular for joining us to build capacity in the West African sub-region. Please join me in welcoming Ms. Rita Mesias and Mr. Bedri Zymeri and to thank them for their hard work in putting together this programme.
Ladies and Gentlemen, for the benefit of those coming into formal contact with WAIFEM for the first time, permit me to say a few words about the Institute. WAIFEM was established by the central banks of The Gambia, Ghana, Liberia, Nigeria and Sierra Leone in 1996, principally to build capacity for improved
macroeconomic and financial management in the constituent member countries. Since its inception, and as of the end of June 2023, the Institute has successfully executed eight hundred and ninety-one (891) workshops/seminars in pursuit of its mandate and these have benefited twenty-four thousand, nine hundred and forty-two (24,942) participants from the sub-region and beyond WAIFEM collaborates with a number of reputable institutions to ensure high and international standards in its programme delivery. These institutions include among others; International Monetary Fund, the World Bank, Commonwealth
Secretariat, Debt Relief International, the United Nations Institute for Training and Research (UNITAR), the Commonwealth Secretariat, African Capacity Building Foundation (ACBF) and the United Nations Economic Commission for Africa (UNECA). The Institute has extended its operations to the private sector by establishing the Business Development and Consultancy Unit (BDCU). Although the Unit targets the private sector in the sub-region, some of its programmes may also benefit the Central Banks and relevant public
sector institutions. I, therefore, urge you all to find time to visit our webpage at www.waliferm-cbp.org to familiarize yourselves with workshops organized by the BDCU.
Ladies and Gentlemen, in line with the regional integration agenda, WAIFEM has started an e-learning programme in the French Language. The workshop on the French Language is intended to bridge the linguistic gap between us and the Francophone countries, while at the same time deepening the regional
integration process. The last e-learning French Diploma workshop was organized by WAIFEM in collaboration with the United Nations Institute for Training and Research (UNITAR) from October 24 to December 7, 2022, and was facilitated by Channelle Française. The workshop consisted of three phases namely face-to-face, virtual and immersion. The face-to-face and virtual phases were for two weeks, respectively. During the virtual phase, a Zoom conversation was held between the mentor/facilitator and each participant to test the ability of participants to express themselves in French. This covered all the lessons taught during the workshop. During the immersion phase, participants undertook a ten (10) day intensive attachment in Abidjan, Ivory Coast, from November 28-December 7, 2022.
About this Workshop
Ladies and Gentlemen, the main objective of this workshop is to get participants acquainted with the revised Balance of Payments Manual (BPM6). Also, the workshop is expected to upgrade the knowledge and skills of participants in the compilation of the balance of payments and the Systems of National Accounts and the interlinkages between the balance of payments and other sectoral accounts. Accordingly, the workshop has been designed to cover several key topics such as Conceptual Framework and Core Accounting Principles, Financial Instruments and Functional Categories in BPM6, Goods Account, Service Account, Primary Income Account, Secondary Income and Capital Accounts, Direct Investment, Portfolio and Other Investment, reserve Assets: Main Achievements, Challenges and Prospects, International Investment Position as well as workshops.
4. Ladies and Gentlemen,
It would be remiss of me to leave this podium without expressing our gratitude to Andrew Ndeti Kitili, and Malik Bani Hani, both of the Statistics Department of IMF and their team, for their relentless efforts in strengthening the capacity of West African Countries over the years. Before I conclude let me assure you, that expert faculties drawn from the IMF Statistics Department, and international experts in BoP and IIP Statistics have been assembled to facilitate this Workshop. I, therefore, enjoin you all to freely interact with them to derive maximum benefits from their brief stay with you. I once again express our appreciation to the Governor, Central Bank of The Gambia for his unflinching support of the workshop of WAIFEM and for taking time out of his crowded schedule to grace this occasion.
To the participants, urge you all to interact fully to deepen your professional networking relationships with your fellow participants to further the workshop of integration in the sub-region.
Once again, Ladies and Gentlemen, I welcome every one of you to this workshop and wish you all successful deliberations as well as a pleasant stay in Banjul.
Thank you for your kind attention.