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International Monetary Fund. External Relations Dept.
The IMF’s traditional lending was designed to help countries weather short-term balance of payments crises. The severity of the problems faced by poor and often highly indebted countries in the 1980s, however, prompted the IMF to create longer-term and more concessional financing arrangements. The Structural Adjustment Facility (SAF) established in 1986 and the Enhanced Structural Adjustment Facility (ESAF) in 1987 were designed to help these countries undertake extensive reforms of their economies as well as macroeconomic adjustment.
This paper presents key findings of the Sixth Review for Tajikistan under the Extended Credit Facility. Real GDP growth for 2011 reached 7.4 percent, driven mainly by agriculture, construction, and services. The authorities plan to maintain a conservative fiscal stance in line with the macroeconomic framework agreed during recent reviews, targeting a deficit of 0.5 percent of GDP. The fiscal stance for 2012 remains appropriate, but further consolidation will be necessary over the medium term to maintain fiscal and external sustainability.
Tajikistan’s economic performance has been satisfactory, but challenges still remain. Executive Directors agreed that the challenge is to support recovery while addressing risks to macroeconomic stability. They emphasized for prudent monetary stance to avoid inflation and also to address vulnerabilities in the financial sector. Directors agreed that structural reforms should be given top priority. They welcomed progress in establishing a framework for agricultural financing. Directors commended plans to improve the business climate through a reform of the tax regime and improved transparency and accountability of state-owned enterprises.
The Russian economy has improved after the recession, but recovery is fragile. Executive Directors appreciated the pre-crisis policy of taxing and saving oil revenues in a stabilization fund, which had created significant space for fiscal expansion, monetary easing, and extraordinary liquidity support to the banking system while helping to prevent an abrupt ruble depreciation. Directors agreed that the main challenges will be to implement medium-term fiscal consolidation, mitigate pressures for real appreciation and inflation, restore the health of the banking system, and improve the investment climate through ambitious structural reforms.
Economic activity in Tajikistan continues to recover from the global crisis, but a range of vulnerabilities remain. Real GDP grew at an estimated 7.5 percent through the first nine months of 2011. The political environment appears broadly stable, but there are underlying tensions. The worst of the food and fuel price shocks has been weathered without civil unrest, partly owing to measures to ensure supplies, higher remittances, and a general understanding by the population that remedies are limited given resource constraints.
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Inflation followed a strikingly uniform pattern in all countries of the Middle East, North Africa, and Central Asia during the period 1996-2009, falling until about 2000 and then rising. International fuel prices do not help explain this pattern. This conclusion is robust even when different cross sections of countries are tested or when different regression variables are included. The pattern of inflation is explained mainly by past inflation, the strength of the US dollar, US inflation, and—depending on the subset of countries analyzed—monetary and exchange rate policies and nonfuel commodity prices.
Ms. Ratna Sahay, Mr. Jeromin Zettelmeyer, Mr. Eduardo Borensztein, and Mr. Andrew Berg
What are the relative roles of macroeconomic variables, structural policies, and initial conditions in explaining the time path of output in transition and the large observed differences in output performance across transition economies? Using a sample of 26 countries, this paper follows a general-to-specific modeling approach that allows for differential effects of policies and initial conditions on the private and state sectors and for time-dependent effects of initial conditions. While showing some fragility to model specification, the results point to the preeminence of structural reforms over both initial conditions and macroeconomic variables in explaining cross-country differences in performance and the timing of the recovery.
This paper attempts to explain short- and long-term dynamics of-and forecast-inflation in Tajikistan using the Vector Error Correction Model (VECM) and Autoregressive Moving Average Model (ARMA). By analyzing different transmission channels through the VECM, we were able to evaluate their relative dominance, magnitude, and speed of transition to the equilibrium price level, with the view of identifying those policy tools that will enhance the effectiveness of monetary policy. We found that excess supply of broad money is inflationary in both the short and long term. The dynamic analysis also demonstrates that the exchange rate and international inflation have a strong impact on local prices. Available monetary instruments, such as the refinancing rate, have proven to be ineffective. Therefore, the Tajik monetary authority could greatly benefit from enhancing its monetary instruments toolkit, including by developing the interest rate channel, to improve its monetary policy execution and to achieve stable inflationary conditions.