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Johannes Eugster, Giang Ho, Ms. Florence Jaumotte, and Mr. Roberto Piazza
How important is foreign knowledge for domestic innovation outcomes? How is this relation shaped by globalization and the attendant intensification of international competition? Our empirical approach extends the previous literature by analyzing a large panel comprising industries in both advanced and emerging economies over the past two decades. We find that barriers to the domestic diffusion of foreign knowledge have fallen significantly for emerging economies. For all countries, and especially for emerging economies, inflows of foreign knowledge have a growing and quantitatively important impact on domestic innovation. Controlling for the amount of domestic R&D, we find evidence that increases in international competitive pressure at the industry level had a positive effect on domestic innovation outcomes
International Monetary Fund
The HIPC Initiative and MDRI are nearly complete with 35 countries having already reached the completion point under the HIPC Initiative. One country, Chad, remains in the interim phase. Debt relief under the Initiatives has substantially alleviated debt burdens in recipient countries and has enabled them to increase their poverty-reducing expenditure by two and a half percentage points between 2001 and 2013. Creditor participation in the Initiative has been strong amongst the multilateral and Paris Club creditors; however participation from the other creditor groups still needs to be strengthened. The total cost of debt relief to creditors under the HIPC Initiative is currently estimated to be US$75.0 billion, while the costs to the four multilateral creditors providing relief under the MDRI is estimated to be US$41.1 billion in end-2013 present value terms.
International Monetary Fund. European Dept.
This Selected Issues paper provides a brief overview of Slovakia’s transformation over this period. The note is divided into three parts. The first section offers some historical background on the run-up to EU accession. The paper also discusses the economic impact of EU accession and highlights the main challenges that Slovakia still faces. Although the first decade in the EU has seen successes, Slovakia faces important challenges to consolidate its position and close the gap with more advanced economies. A first long-term challenge is to shift from efficiency to an innovation-driven growth model. Actions to improve the business environment and domestic infrastructure could lay the foundations for stronger and more job-rich growth. In Slovakia, the high unemployment rate reflects the faulty working of three key mechanisms: the transition from school to work; the transition from unemployment back to employment; and mobility across regions. In order to address this situation, wide-ranging policies need to be implemented. The quality of education and training needs to be improved in order to better correspond to labor market needs. The ongoing reform of vocational education and training is a step in the right direction.
International Monetary Fund. European Dept.
This paper discusses key findings of the Cluster Report on German-Central European Supply Chain (GCESC). Since the 1990s, a GCESC has evolved, manufacturing goods for export to the rest of the world. Reflecting this, bilateral trade linkages between Germany and the Czech Republic, Hungary, Poland, and the Slovak Republic (CE4) have expanded rapidly. Participation in the GCESC has led to technology transfers to CE4 countries and accelerated income convergence. Export growth in knowledge-intensive sectors has been particularly rapid in the CE4. It is also observed that complementarities between supply chain activities and domestic production have led to greater synchronization of the business cycle among GCESC countries.
International Monetary Fund
Japan’s position is one of the largest and richest economies in the world. Tokyo as a financial marketplace is not a major intermediator of global capital flows. The current macroeconomic environment is conducive to spillovers being larger than captured by the empirical analysis. Apart from heading off tail risks, fiscal consolidation in Japan would have medium to long-term benefits for its partner countries. Exchange rate-related spillovers on foreign financial markets are found to be small and depend partly on policy developments abroad.
International Monetary Fund
The paper assesses the competitiveness of Swiss exporters, and shows that the effect of nominal exchange rate on trade balance depends on the degree of exchange rate pass-through and on trade elasticities. It highlights that the degree of exchange rate pass-through should also be factored in monetary policy decisions. The authorities are considering legislative changes to strengthen macroprudential oversight by supporting the mutual cooperation between Financial Market Supervisory Authority (FINMA) and Swiss National Bank (SNB) over the financial stability. The scope of the too-big-to-fail (TBTF) proposal should also be broadened to address systematic risk.
International Monetary Fund
Although progress has been made in strengthening the Swiss economy, systemic risks posed by large banks as well as revisions to the macroprudential framework are still in train. The authorities welcomed the too-big-to-fail (TBTF) legislation and intervention of the Swiss National Bank (SNB) on strengthening financial sector stability, and stressed the need of a strong macroprudential framework and a legal framework with regard to crisis prevention. The authorities supported adherence to the Swiss debt brake rule, and emphasized that sustainability of public finances should be further improved.