2022 Index of Economic Freedom

Burkina Faso

OVERALL SCORE58.3
WORLD RANK100
Rule of Law

Property Rights47.0

Judicial Effectiveness36.3

Government Integrity41.4

Government Size

Tax Burden81.8

Government Spending82.3

Fiscal Health66.1

Regulatory Efficiency

Business Freedom41.9

Labor Freedom61.6

Monetary Freedom75.6

Open Markets

Trade Freedom61.0

Investment Freedom65.0

Financial Freedom40.0

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Quick Facts
  • Population:
    • 20.9 million
  • GDP (PPP):
    • $47.3 billion
    • 0.8% growth
    • 5.1% 5-year compound annual growth
    • $2,262 per capita
  • Unemployment:
    • 5.0%
  • Inflation (CPI):
    • 1.9%
  • FDI Inflow:
    • $149.0 million

Burkina Faso’s economic freedom score is 58.3, making its economy the 100th freest in the 2022 Index. Burkina Faso is ranked 13th among 47 countries in the Sub-Saharan Africa region, and its overall score is above the regional average but below the world average.

Over the past five years, Burkina Faso has enjoyed uninterrupted economic growth averaging over 5 percent annually. With score increases in rule of law outstripped by declines in fiscal health and monetary freedom, Burkina Faso has recorded a 1.3-point overall loss of economic freedom since 2017, briefly gaining recognition as “Moderately Free” in 2018 but then dropping back into the “Mostly Unfree” category. Scores for government spending and tax burden are relatively good, but judicial effectiveness and business freedom remain far below average.

IMPACT OF COVID-19: As of December 1, 2021, 286 deaths had been attributed to the pandemic in Burkina Faso, and the government’s response to the crisis ranked 163rd among the countries included in this Index in terms of its stringency. The economy grew just 0.8 percent in 2020.

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Background

The former French colony of Burkina Faso is one of the world’s poorest countries. After popular protests forced President Blaise Compaoré from office in 2014, Roch Marc Christian Kaboré of the People’s Movement for Progress was elected to a five-year term as president in 2015. Kaboré won reelection in 2020, but his party failed to gain a parliamentary majority. Burkina Faso has been experiencing a surge in terrorist attacks that have spawned ethnic and sectarian strife. About 90 percent of the population is engaged in subsistence farming, and cotton is the principal cash crop. Literacy rates are well below the regional average. Other challenges include political insecurity in neighboring Mali, unreliable energy supplies, and poor transportation links.

Rule of Law

Property Rights 47.0 Create a Graph using this measurement

Judicial Effectiveness 36.3 Create a Graph using this measurement

Government Integrity 41.4 Create a Graph using this measurement

Protection of private property is weak. Struggling with contradictions between statutory land tenure systems and local informal land control, the government has been trying to issue titles recognizing land ownership rights. The inefficient judiciary is formally independent but historically has been subject to executive influence and corruption. Corruption and impunity are widespread and particularly affect the police force. Anticorruption laws and bodies are generally ineffective.

Government Size

The top individual income tax rate is 27.5 percent, and the top corporate tax rate is 28 percent. The overall tax burden equals 16.8 percent of total domestic income. Government spending has amounted to 24.3 percent of total output (GDP) over the past three years, and budget deficits have averaged 4.3 percent of GDP. Public debt is equivalent to 44.3 percent of GDP.

Regulatory Efficiency

A fragile security situation, unreliable energy supplies, and poor transportation options limit business opportunities. A large percentage of males in the labor force migrate annually to neighboring countries for seasonal jobs. In 2021, the government continued to support cotton producers by subsidizing cotton prices, fertilizers, and seeds.

Open Markets

Burkina Faso has two preferential trade agreements in force, and its trade-weighted average tariff rate is 9.5 percent. Nontariff barriers are considerable. Bureaucratic barriers, exacerbated by the opaque investment framework, limit foreign and domestic investment. The financial system remains underdeveloped, and overall access to credit remains limited.

Country's Score Over Time

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Regional Ranking

RANK COUNTRY OVERALL CHANGE
1Mauritius70.9-6.1
2Cabo Verde66.72.9
3Botswana64.8-2.8
4Côte d'Ivoire61.6-0.1
5Seychelles61.1-5.2
6Benin611.4
7São Tomé and Príncipe60.34.4
8Senegal602.0
9Ghana59.80.6
10Tanzania59.5-1.8
11Namibia59.2-3.4
12Madagascar58.91.2
13Burkina Faso58.31.8
14The Gambia58-0.8
15Togo57.2-0.3
16Rwanda57.1-11.2
17South Africa56.2-3.5
18Mali55.90.3
19Gabon55.8-2.3
20Mauritania55.3-0.8
21Djibouti55.3-0.9
22Niger54.9-2.4
23Nigeria54.4-4.3
24Uganda54.2-4.4
25Guinea54.2-2.3
26Malawi530.0
27Cameroon52.9-0.5
28Kenya52.6-2.3
29Angola52.6-1.6
30Sierra Leone520.3
31Eswatini51.4-3.7
32Mozambique51.3-0.3
33Comoros50.4-5.3
34Chad49.8-0.6
35Ethiopia49.6-2.1
36Zambia48.7-1.7
37Republic of Congo48.5-2.2
38Lesotho48.1-5.4
39Liberia47.9-1.3
40Democratic Republic of Congo47.6-1.4
41Equatorial Guinea47.2-2.0
42Guinea-Bissau46-8.9
43Central African Republic45.7-3.1
44Eritrea39.7-2.6
45Burundi39.4-10.5
46Zimbabwe33.1-6.4
47Sudan32-7.1
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