This 2012 Article IV Consultation reports that Palau’s growth is expected to be favorable at 3 percent in FY2012 and to average 2 percent over the medium term. The outlook is clouded by an unsettled global environment, and downside risks dominate. Highly dependent on tourism, imports of food and fuel, and foreign aid, Palau remains vulnerable to external headwinds and has limited policy space to counter these risks. The authorities have made commendable efforts to reduce the current fiscal deficit markedly during FY2010–11, but the deficit remains sizable.
The key findings of the Republic of Palau’s 2010 Article IV Consultation shows that the single most important issue in Palau remains fiscal policy, including its effect on medium-term growth, as fiscal consolidation proceeds. The global financial crisis followed on the heels of a massive terms-of-trade shock, leading to a sharp curtailment of foreign direct investment and private credit. Tourism tumbled following an airline bankruptcy, and construction activity fell as major infrastructure projects reached completion.
The report discusses the needed fiscal adjustment under the no Compact renewal and Compact renewal scenarios, respectively. The report also discusses the IMF estimates and projections of the Republic of Palau's selected social indicators, 1995 and 2000–07; gross domestic product during 2002–07; national government debt and debt service, 1999/00–2006/07; national government budgetary operations, 2001/02–2007/08; national government expenditure, 2001/02–2006/07; details of assets and liabilities; operating accounts of the national development bank of palau; financial positions of the civil service pension fund, 2000/01; 2006/07, etc.
Over the past two years, economic activity in Palau has been slowed. Executive Directors welcomed the authorities’ disciplined policies, strong financial sector legislation, and prudent management of foreign grants. They encouraged the authorities to build a strong fiscal consolidation and improve the business environment. Directors applauded the authorities’ strong efforts to reduce expenditure. They stressed the need for strengthening tax administration and commended the well regulated financial sector, and encouraged the authorities to improve the coverage, reliability, and timeliness of key economic statistics.
Real output growth of the Republic of the Marshall Islands appears to have slowed sharply in FY2003 and again in FY2004. The 2005 Article IV Consultation highlights that the economic activity has been hampered by delays in implementing an upgraded public works program and the closure of a large privately owned tuna processing plant. The fiscal position deteriorated in FY2004. This deterioration reflects, on the revenue side, a decline in grants aimed at infrastructure projects owing in part to delays in initiating projects, lower income tax collection, and volatility in nontax revenue.
The staff report for the 2004 Article IV Consultation on the Federated States of Micronesia (FSM) focuses on economic developments and policies. Fiscal and structural reforms are needed for the FSM to achieve self-sufficiency. The large government sector will be increasingly unsustainable given coming declines in grants. Fiscal adjustment will need to comprise both expenditure cuts and revenue measures. Structural reform priorities should include improvements to the legal framework for land use, foreign investment, and lending.
This paper provides a review of recent economic developments in Palau, covering the first five years of the Compact of Free Association (Compact) with the United States. The paper analyzes the economic growth, prices, wages, and employment. The study assesses the public finances and overall developments, which include revenues and grants, expenditure, local governments, trust funds, and nonfinancial public enterprises. The paper provides a detailed study of the financial and external sectors, current and capital accounts, external debt, and exchange and trade systems.