This is also true in terms of gender. According to a recent IMF study, countries where women are held back by outdated obstacles and attitudes tend to have lower per capita income—by as much as 27 percent. This is not good for women, or for men, or for Mali. Removing obstacles to female participation in economic activity must rank high on the policy agenda. Again, let me frank: women are key to unlocking Mali's potential.
This all adds up to an ambitious agenda of reforms. Malian wisdom says that "You cannot pick up a pebble with one finger." [Bolokoni kélé tè bèlè ta : on ne peut pas prendre un caillou avec un seul doigt de la main.]
The stakeholders in Mali's development are diverse, as is the composition of your Council, with representatives from all walks of life. Yet, like the fingers of one hand, they are all working together toward a common goal—that of unleashing Mali's potential.
Your development partners, including the IMF, stand ready to help Mali unlock its growth potential.
Together, let us pick up all the pebbles on the way that will lead to a better life for all in Mali.