Promoting economic development and employment generation through decentralization in Senegal
Although the Government of Senegal (GOS) has a highly centralized administrative system, a number of laws have been enacted since the early 1970's to decentralize administrative and fiscal responsibilities to local governments and to regionalize some operations of central government ministries. According to this report, decentralization is crucial to creating a conducive environment for private investment and employment expansion. Section I reviews Senegal's current economic challenges and the relationships between decentralization and economic development. Section II reviews the country's decentralization program and describes the legal framework and financial and service performance of local government units. Section III describes the GOS policy for stimulating the private sector through the national investment code, financial institutions, and technical assistance programs. In Section IV, the report describes other national policy factors which influence the GOS's ability to implement decentralization, including national land policy, local development planning, and training capacities. A review in Section V of policy options for improving decentralization leads to a final section which selects from this list the actions deemed most appropriate for USAID near-term action in the light of current A.I.D. program directions, cost, and potential impact on local economic development and employment generation. Five case studies of decentralization in secondary cities and towns are included among the appendices.