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International Monetary Fund. Finance Dept.
This paper focuses on Ukraine’s Ex-Post Evaluation of Exceptional Access Under the 2015 Extended Arrangement. Sound fiscal and monetary policies since the 2014–2015 crisis have resulted in a sharp reduction in Ukraine’s external and internal imbalances. Public debt was put on a downward path, inflation has declined, and international reserves have recovered. The new Stand-By Arrangement will provide an anchor for the authorities’ efforts to address the impact of the crisis, while ensuring macroeconomic stability and safeguarding achievements to date. Together with support from the World Bank and the European Union, it will help address large financing needs. The program will focus on safeguarding medium-term fiscal sustainability, preserving central bank independence and the flexible exchange rate, and enhancing financial stability while recovering the costs from bank resolutions. The National Bank of Ukraine has skillfully managed monetary policy during a very challenging period. Central Bank independence should be preserved, and monetary and exchange rate policies should continue to provide a stable anchor in the context of the inflation-targeting regime, while allowing orderly exchange rate adjustment and preventing liquidity stress.
International Monetary Fund. African Dept.
This paper discusses Cabo Verde’s 2019 Article IV Consultation and Request for an Eighteen-Month Policy Coordination Instrument (PCI). The PCI aims at bolstering macroeconomic stability through fiscal consolidation and growth-enhancing reforms to support medium-term fiscal and debt sustainability. Policy discussions and the PCI-supported program focused on achieving medium-term fiscal and debt sustainability; modernizing the monetary policy framework and continuing to build precautionary reserves; bolstering the financial system resilience; restructuring lossmaking State-Owned Enterprises; and advancing structural reforms to support private sector-led growth. The medium-term outlook is positive although risks are tilted to the downside. Economic growth is projected to remain robust while the fiscal and external positions are expected to improve further, underpinned by growth and programmed structural reforms.
International Monetary Fund. European Dept.
This paper discusses Greece’s Ex Post Evaluation of Exceptional Access Under the 2012 Extended Arrangement. Greece has made significant progress in unwinding its macroeconomic imbalances since the onset of its financial crisis. However, extensive fiscal consolidation and internal devaluation have come at a high cost to society, reflected in declining incomes and exceptionally high unemployment. On the basis of Greece’s current policy adjustment program, long-term growth is expected to reach slightly lower than 1 percent, and the primary fiscal surplus is projected to come in at about 1.5 percent of GDP. Downside risks to the macroeconomic and fiscal outlook remain significant, related to incomplete or delayed policy implementation.
International Monetary Fund. European Dept.
This 2015 Article IV Consultation highlights that Portugal’s significant flow imbalances have largely been corrected in the wake of the sovereign debt crisis, with employment increasing, output expanding, and the current account balance posting surpluses for the first time in decades. The economy has expanded at close to 1 percent per year on average since early 2013, with growth driven largely by consumption. The near-term outlook is benefiting from the trifecta of record-low interest rates, a weakening euro, and low oil prices. Output is expected to increase by 1.6 percent in 2015 and by 1.5 percent in 2016, with outlook for inflation improving as well.
International Monetary Fund. Fiscal Affairs Dept.
This 2004 Article IV Consultation on Romania highlights commendable progress under its home-grown IMF-supported program. Economic activity is picking up after a four-year slump, inflation remains low, the financial sector is stable, and the fiscal and external positions are improving. The 2014 budget aims to protect the gains under the program, continue the downward debt-to-GDP trajectory, and advance the reform agenda. Debt has fallen considerably owing to completion of a large part of the debt-land swap, but remains high. The authorities have taken welcome steps to strengthen the nonbank financial institutions supervisory framework.
Mr. Serkan Arslanalp and Mr. Waikei R Lam
This paper examines how Japan’s long-term interest rates and Japanese banks’ interest rate risk exposures may evolve under Abenomics. Results from a panel regression analysis for major advanced economies shows that long-term government bond yields in Japan are determined to a large extent by growth and inflation outlook, fiscal conditions, demography, and the investor base of government securities. A further deterioration of fiscal conditions would push up long-term rates by about 2 percentage points over the medium term, but the rise is partly offset by higher demand for safe assets amid population aging and increased purchases by the Bank of Japan. At the same time, illustrative scenarios suggest the interest rate risk exposure of Japanese banks could decline substantially over the next two years. However, if structural and fiscal reforms are incomplete, both long-tem yields and interest-risk exposures of Japanese banks could increase over the medium term.
International Monetary Fund
This paper presents key findings of the Ex Post Assessment of Longer-Term Program Engagement for Bolivia. Bolivia is a country that is perceived as having one of the best structural reform records in Latin America but experienced sluggish per capita growth, and made virtually no progress in reducing income-based poverty measures. The paper presents a summary account of Bolivia’s performance under IMF-supported programs. It emphasizes that to address Bolivia’s main economic problems—insufficient growth, and fiscal and financial fragility—a new medium-term program should be focused on fundamental institutional and structural reforms.
International Monetary Fund. External Relations Dept.
The Web edition of the IMF Survey is updated several times a week, and contains a wealth of articles about topical policy and economic issues in the news. Access the latest IMF research, read interviews, and listen to podcasts given by top IMF economists on important issues in the global economy. www.imf.org/external/pubs/ft/survey/so/home.aspx
International Monetary Fund
This 2004 Article IV Consultation highlights that Japan’s economic recovery continued in 2003 and into the first part of 2004. For 2003, GDP growth reached 2½ percent, double the mid-year consensus forecast, and continued at about 6 percent on an annualized basis in the first quarter of 2004. As the economic recovery broadens further, real GDP is projected to expand by 4½ percent in 2004 and 2½ percent in 2005, with CPI deflation ebbing to zero by the end of this period.
International Monetary Fund
A considerable degree of macroeconomic stability was achieved by Bolivia, and by the steadfast implementation of structural reforms, most of the distortions that adversely affected the economy in the early 1980s were removed. The Bolivian authorities are committed to fighting poverty. Executive Directors urged the authorities to proceed decisively with the envisaged reform of labor regulations in 2000 to enhance external competitiveness, make Bolivia’s regulations complaint with the norms of the International Labor Organization, and broaden the coverage of the formal economy.