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Christopher W. Surdak and Sara Agarwal

For the latest thinking about the international financial system, monetary policy, economic development, poverty reduction, and other critical issues, subscribe to Finance & Development (F&D). This lively quarterly magazine brings you in-depth analyses of these and other subjects by the IMF’s own staff as well as by prominent international experts. Articles are written for lay readers who want to enrich their understanding of the workings of the global economy and the policies and activities of the IMF.

International Monetary Fund

Two years ago, citizens in the Arab world—fired by their ideals and visions of a better life—ignited a social movement that inspired people around the globe. In Egypt, Jordan, Libya, Morocco, Tunisia, and Yemen—the so-called Arab countries in transition—people embraced change, ushering in a new era. This issue of F&D looks at the difficulties of this transition, focusing on long-standing forces that shape the region’s economy and offering options for moving ahead to achieve strong, inclusive growth. • Masood Ahmed, Director of the IMF’s Middle East and Central Asia Department, maps out an agenda for modernizing and diversifying the region’s economies in “Toward Prosperity for All.” • In “Freedom and Bread Go Together,” Marwan Muasher addresses the intersection of economic progress and political change. • Vali Nasr, in a Point of View column, underscores the vital role small and medium-sized enterprises play in a successful democratic transition. Elsewhere in this issue, we look at how surging oil and gas production in the United States could shake up global energy markets; the effect of uncertainty on economic growth; and Mexico’s competitiveness rebound. F&D's People in Economics series profiles Christina Romer, former chair of the U.S. Council of Economic Advisers and an architect of the U.S. stimulus package; and the latest installment in our Back to Basics series explains how structural policies help to both stabilize and strengthen economies.

International Monetary Fund. Middle East and Central Asia Dept.

Third Review Under the Arrangement Under the Precautionary and Liquidity Line (PLL)-Press Release; Staff Report; and Statement by the Executive Director for Morocco

Mr. Sarmad Khawaja and Mr. Thomas K. Morrison
The paper outlines a general framework for statistical legislation. The implications of statistical legislation for the whole statistical system, as well as for centralized versus decentralized statistical systems, are addressed. The general framework is spelled out by identifying "essential" components of statistical legislation. The paper illustrates how these components can be applied to different country situations, and it draws attention to a number of additional topics for discussion and areas for future study in statistical legislation. It also brings together summary descriptions of the statistical legislation of a large number of countries that underlie the derivation of the essential components. It thus provides a reference for countries considering new or revised statistical legislation.
Mr. Thomas K. Morrison and Mr. Sarmad Khawaja
This paper suggests a way forward in the effort to measure statistical capacity building by combining features of two tools – the Project Management System, a logical framework methodology that the IMF Statistics Department uses to plan, monitor, and evaluate technical assistance projects, and the Data Quality Assessment Framework, a methodology for assessing data quality that brings together best practices and internationally accepted concepts and definitions in statistics
Ebrahimi Farah

How does economic activity proceed in the absence A. A. of formal legal systems? What alternative rules and institutions evolve? Princeton economics professor Avinash Dixit’s April 7 IMF Institute seminar, “Lawlessness and Economics,” addressed the theory of alternative modes of governance using economic models. He drew on the works of prominent thinkers in new institutional economics and the social sciences, using case studies to show different institutional responses to legal failures.