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Mr. Masahiro Nozaki, Mr. Tobias Roy, Mr. Pawel Dyczewski, Mr. Bernhard Fritz-Krockow, Ms. Fanny M Torres Gavela, Mr. Gamal Z El-Masry, and Mr. Rafael A Portillo
This paper analyzes the economic growth and stability in Suriname. The paper highlights that in recent years, the outlook has turned substantively more positive. The favorable external environment and the stability-oriented policies of the Venetian administration have boosted confidence in the economy, leading to increased investment, domestic economic activity, and employment. The recent boom in commodity prices has helped boost growth, while increased gold production and investment in the mineral industry are projected to support continued growth in the coming years.
MOHSIN S. KHAN and MALCOLM D. KNIGHT

The past decade proved to be a period of considerable stress for non-oil developing countries. Throughout most of the 1970s, a combination of events caused the international economic environment to become less conducive to stable growth for this group of countries and made the problem of economic management in general—and of balance of payments adjustment in particular—much more difficult. The substantial fluctuations in the world market prices of primary commodities, the sharp increases in the price of energy products, the slowdown of economic activity in the industrial countries, and the rise in real interest rates toward the end of the period were all major contributors to a serious deterioration in the current account positions of most non-oil developing countries. At the same time, domestic developments in a number of economies also played a significant role in exacerbating payments disequilibrium. In many non-oil developing countries, inflationary demand-management policies—combined with rigid exchange rate policies and restrictions on trade and payments—resulted in domestic demand pressures and cumulative losses in international competitiveness that also gave rise to current account and overall balance of payments difficulties.

Mr. Simon Cueva, Mr. Stephen Tokarick, Mr. Erik J. Lundback, Ms. Janet Gale Stotsky, and Mr. Samuel P. Itam

Abstract

This paper focuses on the independent states that are full members of the Caribbean Community. It provides background information on recent developments in the Caribbean region and lays out the principal policy issues that countries will need to address in the period ahead. The Caribbean countries face several common problems and must deal with similar economic policy issues. Consequently, concentrating on the regional perspective permits a comparison of the individual responses to similar problems. The regional view throws light on the countries' movement toward convergence. The economic prospects for the region are generally satisfactory over the medium term, but the projections depend importantly on the resolve of governments to pursue appropriate policies, as well as favorable developments in the rest of the world. The relatively favorable outlook for the region is not without risks, such as a slowdown in growth in the major trading partner countries or a term of trade shock.

International Monetary Fund

This Selected Issues paper analyzes macroeconomic fluctuations in the Eastern Caribbean Currency Union (ECCU). The paper describes data, along with the estimation technique used to ensure stationarity of the data. The empirical regularities of macroeconomic fluctuations in the ECCU are described, examining the relationship between a set of macroeconomic time series and domestic output, for each of the six IMF members of the ECCU. The paper also explores the determinants of macroeconomic volatility in the ECCU.

Mr. Simon Cueva, Mr. Stephen Tokarick, Mr. Erik J. Lundback, Ms. Janet Gale Stotsky, and Mr. Samuel P. Itam

Abstract

With few exceptions, countries in the Caribbean region have performed reasonably well in recent years. They will, however, need to accelerate policy actions in a number of areas to address he challenges they are likely to face in the near future.

Mr. Simon Cueva, Mr. Stephen Tokarick, Mr. Erik J. Lundback, Ms. Janet Gale Stotsky, and Mr. Samuel P. Itam

Abstract

The economic performance of most of the countries in the Caribbean region has been broadly satisfactory in recent years, but insufficiently robust to substantially reduce unemployment. In the five-year period ended 1998, real GDP growth in the region was somewhat higher than in the major trading partner countries, inflation declined, and the fiscal and external positions improved. Also, progress was made toward trade liberalization.

Mr. Simon Cueva, Mr. Stephen Tokarick, Mr. Erik J. Lundback, Ms. Janet Gale Stotsky, and Mr. Samuel P. Itam

Abstract

The English-speaking Caribbean region has, for the most part, enjoyed economic stability, modest growth in per capita incomes, and a standard of living that compares fairly well with the rest of Latin America and the Caribbean as a whole. Also, social indicators are generally good and political systems stable. However, the increased integration of the region in the global economy has led to a number of risks that have to be addressed promptly for the countries of the region to accelerate growth and social progress in the period ahead. Although the region faces a number of issues that could be discussed, this paper concentrates on three broad topics, namely the need to: (1) lower the costs of financial intermediation and to strengthen supervision over onshore and offshore financial institutions; (2) improve the public finances—and, thereby, savings—to act as a buffer against external shocks; and (3) advance structural reforms—including further liberalization of trade—to enhance external competitiveness and promote the diversification of exports.