November 6, 2019 End-of-mission press releases include statements from staff teams that communicate preliminary findings after a country visit. The views expressed in this statement are those of the staff of the IMF and do not necessarily reflect those of the Executive Board of the IMF. Based on the preliminary findings of this mission, staff will prepare a report which, subject to management approval, will be presented to the IMF Executive Board for review and decision. The authorities and the IMF mission reached a staff level agreement on the fifth review of the three-year arrangement under the Extended Credit Facility (ECF). The results obtained under the program were very satisfactory in the first half of 2019. The authorities and the IMF mission agreed on fiscal policy measures for the 2020 draft budget to ensure the main objectives of the program and to keep the deficit below the WAEMU regional standard of 3.0. % of GDP. A team from the International Monetary Fund (IMF), led by Luc Eyraud, visited Cotonou from October 24 to November 5, 2019 to discuss the fifth review of the three-year economic and financial program supported by the IMF under the Facility. Extended Credit (FEC) with the Republic of Benin.  At the end of the mission, Mr. Eyraud made the following statement: “Benin’s recent economic performance remains good despite a less favorable external environment and the closure of the border with Nigeria. Real GDP is expected to grow by 6.4% in 2019, driven in particular by the agriculture and transport sectors. Growth should accelerate in 2020 and remain sustained in the medium term, driven by the dynamism of cotton production, construction and port activities. Consumer price inflation, affected by strong agricultural production, trended downward by 1.4% in the first nine months of 2019, compared to the same period a year earlier. It is expected to remain well below the regional cap of 3.0% in 2019 and 2020. The budget deficit for 2019 is estimated at 2.3% of GDP.