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International Monetary Fund. External Relations Dept.

This paper highlights that the IMF, as Trustee for the Trust Fund, held the first of its series of gold auctions on June 2, 1976, with the sale of 780,000 ounces of gold—the total amount offered—at a common price of US$126.00 a fine ounce. The first gold auction was a success from the point of view of both the market and the IMF. In all, a total of 25 million ounces of gold from the IMF’s holdings will be sold at auction over a four-year period.

International Monetary Fund. African Dept.

Madagascar is a fragile country striving to recover from an extended political crisis and international isolation from 2009 to 2013, during which key social and developmental indicators deteriorated. Low revenue collection, substantial low-priority public spending, and governance problems are holding back recovery. Nevertheless, broadly satisfactory performance under the six-month staff monitored program that ended in March 2016 is a sign of improving implementation capacity.

International Monetary Fund. Western Hemisphere Dept.

This paper discusses St. Kitts and Nevis’ Fifth and Sixth Reviews Under the Stand-by Arrangement (SBA) and Request for Waiver of Nonobservance of Performance Criterion. All fiscal program targets were met through end-March 2013, partly owing to strong receipts from the Citizenship by Investment program. The structural benchmark on drafting a proposal for a comprehensive pension reform, scheduled for end-June 2013, has been delayed to allow for further deliberations. The IMF Staff supports the authorities’ request for the completion of the fifth and sixth reviews under the SBA and the waiver of applicability.

International Monetary Fund

Economic activity is on the upswing in Tajikistan, bolstered by higher hydroelectric power production. The government is working to address the structural energy deficit and achieve energy independence, raise social expenditures, maintain a flexible exchange rate regime, and continue structural reforms. Medium-term fiscal consolidation will be essential while striking a careful balance between social and capital spending. Macroeconomic policies should shift from an anti-crisis to a post-crisis footing. Follow-through on structural reforms is essential both for continued donor support and for meeting medium-term macroeconomic objectives.

International Monetary Fund

The Salvadoran economy was severely affected by the global economic slowdown. Further strengthening the economy’s growth prospects and reducing poverty will depend on a durable fiscal consolidation effort and improvements in the investment climate through continued commitment to macroeconomic and financial stability. A recent IMF/World Bank Financial System Stability Assessment (FSSA) confirmed that the Salvadoran financial system withstood the global financial crisis well and was well capitalized and liquid. The FSSA recommended enhancements to the legal and regulatory frameworks as well as measures to reduce some remaining vulnerabilities.

International Monetary Fund

Capacity development (CD) is one of the Fund's three core activities and has grown in importance in recent years.

International Monetary Fund

The Salvadoran economy was severely affected by the global economic slowdown. Further strengthening the economy’s growth prospects and reducing poverty will depend on a durable fiscal consolidation effort and improvements in the investment climate through continued commitment to macroeconomic and financial stability. A recent IMF/World Bank Financial System Stability Assessment (FSSA) confirmed that the Salvadoran financial system withstood the global financial crisis well and was well capitalized and liquid. The FSSA recommended enhancements to the legal and regulatory frameworks as well as measures to reduce some remaining vulnerabilities.

International Monetary Fund. Middle East and Central Asia Dept.

First Review under the Stand-By Arrangement-Press Release; Staff Report; and Statement by the Executive Director for the Republic of Armenia

International Monetary Fund. Research Dept.
The Q&A in this issue features seven questions about emerging markets and the financial crisis (by Ayhan Kose); the research summaries are "Tax Revenue Response to the Business Cycle" (by Cemile Sancak, Ricardo Velloso, and Jing Xing) and "Banking Crisis Resolution: Was this Time Different?" (by Luc Laeven and Fabian Valencia). The issue also lists the contents of the second issue of the IMF Economic Review, Volume 58 Number 2; visiting scholars at the IMF during October-December 2010; and recent IMF Working Papers and Staff Position Notes.
John Brondolo
The global financial and economic crisis presents major challenges for tax agencies. With the economic downturn, tax agencies are encountering emerging compliance problems and greater demands for taxpayer support in the face of prospective budget cuts. To help address these challenges, this paper encourages tax agencies to develop a tax compliance strategy for the crisis by (1) expanding assistance to taxpayers, (2) refocusing enforcement on emerging compliance risks, (3) enacting legislative reforms that facilitate tax administration, and (4) improving communication programs. In each of these areas, the paper identifies specific measures to underpin the strategy, drawing on practices from leading tax agencies and experiences from IMF technical assistance. The paper also highlights emerging tax compliance issues in the financial sector.