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International Monetary Fund. Asia and Pacific Dept
The COVID-19 pandemic erupted just as the government was beginning to implement wide-ranging fiscal, foreign exchange, structural, and governance measures under a Staff-Monitored Program (SMP). The authorities have reaffirmed their commitment to these reforms, but the impact of the crisis is generating balance of payments and fiscal gaps of 4 and 3 percent of GDP, respectively. In the near term, risks are primarily on the downside, especially if there is a widespread local outbreak of the virus. Papua New Guinea’s longer-term outlook remains positive, largely reflecting the likelihood of major resource sector projects.
International Monetary Fund. Asia and Pacific Dept
This paper presents Papua New Guinea’s (PNG) 2019 Article IV Consultation and Request for Staff Monitored Program. The economy is estimated to have rebounded in 2019 following the contraction triggered by the large earthquake in 2018. Inflation is projected to fall in 2019 but to pick up temporarily thereafter. The staff report reflects discussions with the PNG authorities in October 28–November 9, 2019 and is based on the information available as of November 21, 2019. It focuses on PNG near- and medium-term challenges and policy priorities and was prepared before coronavirus disease 2019 became a global pandemic and resulted in unprecedented strains in global trade, commodity and financial markets. It, therefore, does not reflect the implications of these developments and related policy priorities. The outbreak has greatly amplified uncertainty and downside risks around the outlook. Staff is closely monitoring the situation and will continue to work on assessing its impact and the related policy response in PNG and globally.
International Monetary Fund. African Dept.
This paper discusses Cote d’Ivoire’s Sixth Review Under the Arrangement of the Extended Credit Facility and the Extended Arrangement Under the Extended Fund Facility, and Request for Extension and Augmentation of Access. Côte d’Ivoire has been pursuing a development-oriented policy agenda, and the IMF-supported program in place since 2016 has supported that focus, paving the way for the private sector to become the main driver of growth. The performance under the program has been strong. The medium-term growth prospects remain robust, predicated on continuing prudent macroeconomic policy, furthering financial sector reforms and sustaining structural reforms to bolster private sector-led inclusive growth. Côte d’Ivoire’s reform efforts have resulted in improvements in its business climate in recent years. It will be imperative to continue the reform agenda to further stimulate private sector activity and support inclusive growth, including by improving the energy sector, human capital and financial inclusion, accelerating digitalization, enhancing trade connectivity and governance, expanding the coverage of social safety nets, and reinforcing the statistical apparatus to help better inform economic policy.
International Monetary Fund. Asia and Pacific Dept
The Papua New Guinea (PNG) economy has grown sluggishly in recent years, reflecting a combination of domestic and external factors. External factors have included adverse terms of trade movements, a drought, and, in 2018, a large earthquake. Domestic factors have included a difficult fiscal consolidation and a shortage of foreign exchange, sustained by an overvalued exchange rate, leading to import compression and weak investment in the non-resource sector. The main macroeconomic challenges for the government are to finish putting in place policies that will help promote economic stability, and to strengthen its long-term development framework. In 2017-18, the new government made important progress in narrowing the fiscal deficit, and adopted a medium-term revenue strategy. But progress on fiscal consolidation has stalled, and the debt-to-GDP ratio is well above the medium-term target. Monetary authorities have begun to facilitate exchange rate adjustment and strengthening of the monetary framework. Stronger economic policies, involving more ambitious fiscal consolidation coupled with faster exchange rate adjustment would yield favorable results.
International Monetary Fund. Asia and Pacific Dept
This 2017 Article IV Consultation highlights that Papua New Guinea’s economic activity has remained subdued in 2017. Slow growth, generous tax treatment of the Liquefied Natural Gas project, the drought and weak tax administration have all contributed to declining tax revenues and a substantial fiscal deficit and increasing debt-to-GDP ratio. Inflation was boosted to over 6 percent by drought effects, but is beginning to ease. Near-term risks to the outlook are tilted to the downside. Over the medium term, risks are more balanced owing to the upside potential of new resource sector projects and, possibly, a pickup in commodity export prices.
International Monetary Fund. Asia and Pacific Dept
This 2016 Article IV Consultation highlights that Papua New Guinea is facing headwinds stemming from low commodity prices and is recovering from a major drought; these factors have weighed on economic growth, weakened the external position, and created fiscal challenges. Foreign exchange (FX) remains in short supply, but inflows have recently picked up somewhat. Near-term risks to the outlook are tilted to the downside, as fiscal retrenchment may have a greater impact on the economy than currently expected and the limited availability of FX continues to constrain imports and economic activity. A further drop in commodity prices would weaken the external and fiscal positions.
International Monetary Fund. Asia and Pacific Dept
This 2015 Article IV Consultation highlights that Papua New Guinea (PNG) is facing strong headwinds from lower global commodity prices. Although the commencement of liquefied natural gas (LNG) production has boosted overall GDP growth in 2014–15, the slow growth of the nonresource sector calls for a renewed policy focus on inclusive growth in the post-LNG construction period. Risks to the outlook are increasingly skewed to the downside. Fiscal consolidation necessitated by weaker-than-anticipated revenue performance will dampen nonresource growth over the short run, and a weak global economy could further dampen external demand and commodity prices.
International Monetary Fund. Asia and Pacific Dept
This Selected Issues paper provides an overview of financial access and inclusion indicators, related causal factors, and both current and possible reform priorities for on Papua New Guinea (PNG). The paper presents indicators of financial market depth, development, and access for PNG and compares PNG’s performance against that of other countries in the region, at similar levels of development, and beyond. It provides an overview of country-specific challenges facing PNG related to financial inclusion that helps to explain its performance, as well as possible reform priorities in the near term. The government’s current initiatives aimed at promoting financial sector development and inclusion and their preliminary results are also discussed.
International Monetary Fund. Asia and Pacific Dept
This Selected Issues paper analyzes the sustainability of Papua New Guinea’s current and medium-term fiscal policy and its consistency with government objectives. The Papua New Guinea government faces major challenges in shaping a fiscal policy that promotes stability, meets development needs, and adheres to its debt ceilings over the medium term. It could decide to continue with its current fiscal stance, which would see its resource wealth exhausted quickly through large development spending. This approach would likely require continued borrowing and leave little s