The economic reform experiences of the Central Asian states during 1992–98 indicate considerable progress in the region, as a whole, toward establishing a sound macroeconomic environment, but mixed success with structural reforms. Several important lessons can be drawn from the diverse experiences of the five countries in meeting the challenges posed by transition.
This paper discusses the significant overall progress with macro stabilization of these transition countries during 1992-1997. While average inflation declined steadily since 1992, output fell significantly for many of these countries during this period, and it was not unti 1996-97 that as a group they experienced positive growth, financial policies, the current account, competitiveness, debt-and non-debt-creating capital flows, and the initial impact of the Asian crisis.
The International Monetary and Finance Committee at its 2004 Annual Meetings called on the international community to provide assistance including “further debt relief” to low-income countries for achieving the Millennium Development Goals (MDGs). It reaffirmed the Fund’s “important role” in supporting lowincome countries and called on the Fund to consider “further debt relief and its financing.” More impetus for this request was provided by various recent proposals (summarized in Annex I). At their meeting in London in February, G7 Finance Ministers expressed their willingness to provide as much as 100 percent multilateral debt relief.
This paper reviews economic developments in Turkmenistan during 1994–98. Turkmenistan reduced gas exports and suffered a decline in real GDP of close to 40 percent during 1993–95. At the same time, it stepped up foreign borrowing and constrained imports by limiting access to foreign exchange to sustain gross international reserves at the equivalent of 6–9 months of imports. The distortions associated with the perpetuation of central controls, coupled with an accommodating monetary policy, led to financial instability, raising annual average inflation rates to close to 1,500 percent during 1993–95.
This paper reviews economic developments in Turkmenistan during 1994–97. To address the growing economic difficulties, the government announced an economic reform package for 1996, which aimed at achieving a recovery in output, sharply lowering inflation, maintaining a strong reserve position, and promoting private sector development. The reform package had mixed success. Monetary and credit policy was generally restrained until late 1996, contributing to a moderation in inflation. However, economy-wide public sector wages were doubled in October, against a background of continued payment difficulties in the gas sector and a decline in GDP.
This Background Paper and Statistical Appendix for Turkmenistan examines the developments since November 1993, when the manat was introduced as the national currency. Developments in the real sector and systemic reforms are discussed. Fiscal policies, monetary and credit policies, external developments, and the exchange and trade system are described. The paper highlights that over the medium term, the path toward sustainable growth clearly includes the development of alternative routes for the shipment of gas outside the territory of the Former Soviet Union.
This paper reviews economic developments in Turkmenistan during 1996–99. Inflation is an issue in Turkmenistan. The trend decline that started in mid-1996 came to a halt in late 1998 and inflation continued to increase in 1999. By mid-1999, 12-month inflation had increased to 25 percent. Owing to payment problems, gas exports to Ukraine were discontinued in early 1997, resulting in a sharp decline in real GDP in that year. In 1998, gas exports did not resume, other than small deliveries to Iran through a new pipeline that had become operational at end-1997.
This paper reviews economic developments in Turkmenistan during 1992–96. There was a general strengthening of centralized controls during 1993–95 to protect international reserves. Monetary and exchange rate policies were geared toward sustaining a network of implicit taxes and subsidies that helped promote selected areas of economic activity and provide social protection. Real GDP declined by nearly 19 percent in 1994, reflecting, for the most part, contraction of the gas and cotton sectors. Gas production declined continuously from 87.8 billion cubic meters in 1990 to 35.7 billion cubic meters in 1994.