Posted by Richard Allen
Between 1996 and 2008, Ethiopia undertook a comprehensive reform of its core financial systems, and successfully transformed itself in to one of the fastest growing economies in Africa. Since then, according to a recently published book by Stephen B. Peterson, reforms have stood still or even moved backwards. Peterson provides a valuable case study of a reform experiment in which—as a USAID consultant working for the government on the Decentralization Support Activity (DSA) project—he was intimately involved.
The book has many important things to say, especially about the huge institutional challenges of reform in developing countries. A key finding is that reforms take a long time, at least 12-15 years, and basic systems (of what Peterson calls “public financial administration”, PFA) must be introduced before moving on to more sophisticated systems. But the volume also contains some serious flaws.
- Ups and Downs of PFM Reform in Ethiopia: Book Review&uri=http%3A%2F%2Fblog-pfm.imf.org%2Fpfmblog%2F2015%2F12%2Fups-and-downs-of-pfm-reform-in-ethiopia-book-review-posted-by-richard-allen1-between-1996-and-2008-ethiopia-undertook-a.html" class="first">Email this
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