Maldives: Economic Recovery Program
The Economic Recovery Program in Maldives aimed for the recovery and sustainable growth of the economy over the medium term by supporting structural reforms. It sought to create greater fiscal space in the government budget by diversifying the tax base and rationalizing expenditures, improving debt management, and privatizing state-owned enterprises. This evaluation assessed the program successful overall although the sustainability of some outcomes was considered less than likely.
The evaluation identified the following lessons: (i) successful privatization of state-owned enterprises requires strong political commitment and government ownership, and (ii) well-designed and resourced technical assistance is critical to supporting governments with limited capacity to deliver complex reforms.
It recommended the following follow-up actions for the Asian Development Bank: (i) explore opportunities for private sector operations to contribute to the broadening of the economic base and supplement government investment in infrastructure; (ii) continue to provide carefully targeted grant technical assistance to strengthen the technical capacity of key agencies responsible for economic management; and (iii) support the government’s efforts to deliver public services more efficiently to the scattered population.