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Mr. Alfred Schipke, Aliona Cebotari, and Ms. Nita Thacker

Abstract

The Eastern Caribbean Economic and Currency Union (OECS/ECCU) is one of four currency unions in the world. As in other parts of the world in the aftermath of the global economic and financial crisis, the region is at a crossroads, facing the major challenges of creating jobs, making growth more inclusive, reforming the banking system, and managing volatility, while grappling with high public debt and persistent low economic growth. Policymakers have the critical task of implementing strong reforms to strengthen the monetary union while also laying the foundation for accelerating growth. This Handbook provides a comprehensive analysis of the key issues in the OECS/ECCU, including its organization and economic and financial sector linkages, and provides policy recommendations to foster economic growth.

International Monetary Fund

This 2010 Article IV Consultation highlights that macroeconomic outcomes have weakened significantly for St. Lucia. Real GDP is estimated to have contracted by 5.2 percent in 2009, reflecting a sharp decline in visitor arrivals and construction activity related to foreign direct investment. For 2010, the outlook is for a nascent recovery, supported by higher advance hotel bookings and additional flights to the island. Against this backdrop, Executive Directors have welcomed the authorities’ commitment to implement a credible fiscal framework to achieve fiscal sustainability.

International Monetary Fund. Western Hemisphere Dept.

Despite some limited improvement in labor market conditions, unemployment remains high and growth modest as low competitiveness and structural bottlenecks continue to weigh on economic performance. Slow progress in addressing financial sector problems has left banks loaded with impaired assets and unable to support the economy. The new government is developing a program of pro-growth reforms, but policies have not yet been defined.

International Monetary Fund. Statistics Dept.
A technical assistance mission was undertaken by the Real Sector Statistics Advisor in the Caribbean Regional Technical Assistance Centre to Saint Lucia to provide advice to the Central Statistics Office (CSO) on compiling rebased gross domestic product estimates. The CSO is responding to the needs of the Ministry of Finance for more robust and timely national accounts statistics. All the Gross domestic product by economic activity (GDP-P) compilation workbooks have now been redeveloped and revised current and constant 2018 price quarterly and annual estimates have been compiled up to Q3 2019. The incorporation of revised data on tourist expenditure for 2000 onward have also resulted in revisions to the GDP-P current rice estimates and real growth rates. The revised annual and quarterly GDP-P estimates were assessed, and several methodological improvements were implemented. Improvements were made to the constant price estimates by reviewing and replacing weaker volume indicators. Training on the methodological changes and compiling the rebased estimates has been provided. The training on methodological improvements included the use of the more representative employment indicators and various price indices discussed above; back-casting and linking techniques for the current price estimates and linking the constant 2006 price series with the constant 2018 price series.
International Monetary Fund
This report focuses on the Monetary Statistics Component of the Regional Data Module Report on the Observance of Standards and Codes for the Eastern Caribbean Central Bank (ECCB). The report reveals that with respect to the prerequisites of quality and assurances of integrity, the legislation broadly supports mandatory data reporting and the confidentiality of the reported data. However, the ECCB’s responsibility for compiling and disseminating monetary statistics to the public is not clearly specified in the law. Regarding resources, the number of staff allocated to the compilation of monetary statistics is inadequate.
International Monetary Fund
Over the last decade, the Eastern Caribbean Currency Union (ECCU) macroeconomic performance has deteriorated relative to the rest of the Caribbean. Tourism accounts for three-fifths of exports, and the import content of consumption and investment is high. The ECCB-operated quasi-currency board arrangement (CBA) has continued to deliver price and exchange rate stability. The region has strong social indicators, but poverty, health, and crime remain concerns. Despite the implementation of ambitious revenue reforms, limited progress has been made toward fiscal consolidation. Credit has continued to expand rapidly.
International Monetary Fund
In recent years, the IMF has released a growing number of reports and other documents covering economic and financial developments and trends in member countries. Each report, prepared by a staff team after discussions with government officials, is published at the option of the member country.
International Monetary Fund
The statistical data on GDP, saving and investment, selected data on the banana industry, selected industrial production, consumer price index, monetary survey, summary operations of the Eastern Caribbean central bank, consolidated accounts of the commercial banks, summary balance of payments, value, volume, and unit value of major exports, imports and prices of petroleum products, merchandise trade volumes, direction of trade, selected tourism statistics, structure of public debt and effective exchange rate indices, and related economic indices have been detailed in this paper.
International Monetary Fund
This paper presents a debt sustainability analysis for St. Lucia. The medium-term scenario prepared by the IMF staff assumes continued fiscal consolidation and thus is compatible with sustainable debt levels even in the presence of adverse economic shocks. Stress tests show that stabilizing the debt/GDP ratio for the public sector at around the levels prevailing in 2002/03 would allow the absorption of economic shocks without generating unstable debt dynamics. Most temporary shocks would, however, shift the debt ratio upward, and further adjustment would be necessary to restore the preshock level.
International Monetary Fund
In recent years, the IMF has released a growing number of reports and other documents covering economic and financial developments and trends in member countries. Each report, prepared by a staff team after discussions with government officials, is published at the option of the member country.