[30/May/2004] By Adnan Al-Sonwey.
Yemen perhaps, unlucky country both history and circumstances always seem to be as they are in rebellion against it in an attempt to divest it from its epithet “Arabia Flex” the surname it has deserved it now. “ Commented”- one of the economists - about the Yemeni upheavals have taken place in spite of the horrible challenges
Yemen has already made a breakthrough in the economical and political fields since the country reunification in 1990. When the unity declared the country was chafed under overburden pile of economical , political and social problems.
Furthermore , the unity had entailed merging the Yemeni institutions and bodies what eventually gave rise to huge increasing in the civil service personnel as well the demand for services and infrastructure redoubled.
Thereby, the government had to face subtle financial troubles in order to cope up with those serious challenges. Particularly , restructuring the state institutions and ensuring great deal of jobs opportnities.
Thereupon , the government had to embark on structural adjustments program to reform the imbalances and bring the situation back into the right track in order to escape the country out of the total collapse.
Yemen has been carrying out a program of structural adjustments since 1995. It aims to bring about economical , financial and administrative reforms. The program has helped Yemen’s economy regaining its recovery.
The real growth rate in the (GDP) reached to (4.3%) in 2003, comparing to negative growth average came up to (2.3%) in 1994.
Thus , the rate of inflation has reduced gradually from (71%) in 1994 to reach at (13.6%) last year.
The deficit of the payment balance turned into surplus estimated at ($US 336) million dollar in 2003 , after long standing deficit record - it registered ($US463.1) million dollar in 1998.
Yemeni banking sector witnessed remarkable developments last year where currency’s offer increased with (30%) and current currency with (33.7%) of the total currency’s offer .
Based on banking and monetary indicators , the unified budget of trading banks totaling up to (YR536) billion rial in 2003 , comparing to (YR464) billion rial by the end of 2002.
Foreign exchange reserve in the Yemeni Central bank raised up from $US430 million dollar in 1994 , to come up to ($US3.5) billion dollar in 2001 and to reach at ($US6) billion dollar by the end of 2003, the highest sum the central bank of Yemen ever possesses so far.
Thus, the WB indicators showed up that poverty percentage has relatively reduced from(41.8% )in 1998 to (40.1%) in 2003.
As a result of the efforts exerted to rationalize the financial policies and boost the finance sources the state’s general revenue has grown with an average rate reached at (20.3%).
Eight of economical units were privatized last year in the light of restructuring the national economy and smoothing obstacles which hurdle the economic growth and diversity as well as market liberty. There are (37) of economical units were subjected to privatization where 60% out of them turned into private sector.
Several measures have been undertaken last year aimed at reforming and readjusting the administrative units system of the state.
The current government , formed following the parliamentary election in April 2003, included amount of structuring and renaming touched upon some ministries. In this context , seven of ministries and government’s bodies have been selected for restructuring in this year.
Around 22 of political parties are operating in Yemen nowadays in addition to more than (3l75) non-governmental organizations. There are also dozens of official , opposition and independence newspapers, magazines and bulletins are being published in the country.
Though democracy has been adopted recently three parliamentary elections were held in the country so far, moreover the presidential election in 1999 and local councils election in 2001, both of the two took place for the first time in Yemen.
With respect to legislative and legal domain several measures have been taken to restructure the concerned institutions. There are some (279) of legislative decrees and laws had been issued since the Unity, beside the executive laws and internal regulations in the various fields.