The West African Economic and Monetary Union (WAEMU) has a long and varied history, and this book examines how the WAEMU can achieve its development and stability objectives, improve the livelihood of its people, and enhance the inclusiveness of its economic growth, all while preserving its financial stability, enhancing its competitiveness, and maintaining its current fixed exchange rates.
Matthew Gaertner, Ms. Laure Redifer, Pedro Conceição, Mr. Rafael A Portillo, Luis-Felipe Zanna, Jan Gottschalk, Mr. Andrew Berg, Ayodele F. Odusola, Mr. Brett E. House, and Mr. José Saúl Lizondo
The pace of progress toward achievement of the Millenium Development Goals (MDG) in many sub-Saharan African countries remains too slow to reach targets by 2015, despite significant progress in the late 1990s. The MDG Africa Steering Group, convened in September 2007 by the UN Secretary-General, designated 10 countries for pilot studies to investigate how existing national development plans would be impacted by scaled up development aid to Africa. This joint publication of the IMF and the United Nations Development Programme reports conclusions drawn from these pilot studies and summarizes country-specific results for Benin, the Central African Republic, Ghana, Liberia, Niger, Rwanda, Tanzania, Togo, Sierra Leone, and Zambia.
Ms. Christina Kolerus, Ms. Aleksandra Zdzienicka, Mr. Ermal Hitaj, and Mr. Douglas J Shapiro
The West African Economic and Monetary Union (WAEMU), like other monetary unions, faces a number of challenges in dealing with macroeconomic shocks. The region experiences a large number of exogenous shocks: climate-related (e.g., droughts, floods), with a heavy toll on populations and agriculture, but also economic (e.g., terms of trade), with a large impact on key sectors and the cost of living. More generally business cycle synchronization within the WAEMU seems low. Addressing these shocks, while preserving the stability of the union, is therefore a critical issue in the WAEMU.This paper discusses these issues and suggests possible reforms.
Arecent paper by Donovan (1982) examined quantitative evidence regarding the macroeconomic performance of developing countries that in the 1970s undertook adjustment programs supported by use of Fund resources under upper credit tranche stand-by arrangements. That paper compared the balance of payments, growth, and inflation performance of these countries with that exhibited by all non-oil developing countries during the period of these programs and also examined the accompanying effects on real growth and consumption. The paper concluded that, in broad terms, countries that undertook Fund programs achieved significant absolute and relative (that is, compared with non-oil developing countries) reductions in their external deficits, as well as a relative reduction in average domestic inflation rates. Moreover, this adjustment generally was not achieved at a cost of lower real rates of growth of gross domestic product (GDP) and consumption, as changes in these variables for program countries on average were found to be not significantly different from those experienced by all non-oil developing countries.
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