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International Monetary Fund. Middle East and Central Asia Dept.
This 2018 Article IV Consultation highlights that Algeria continues to face important challenges posed by the fall in oil prices four years ago. Despite a sizeable fiscal consolidation in 2017, the fiscal and current account deficits remain large. Real GDP growth slowed sharply, mainly driven by a contraction in hydrocarbon production, although growth in the nonhydrocarbon sector was stable. Unemployment increased to 11.7 percent in September 2017 from 10.5 in September 2016 and remains particularly high among the youth and women. Average inflation declined from 6.4 percent in 2016 to 5.6 percent owing to slowing inflation for manufactured goods and services, and stood at 3.4 percent year-over-year in April 2018.
International Monetary Fund. Middle East and Central Asia Dept.
This 2017 Article IV Consultation highlights Algeria’s continued challenges posed by lower oil prices. Overall economic activity was resilient, but growth in the nonhydrocarbon sector slowed to 2.9 percent in 2016, partly under the effects of spending cuts. Inflation increased from 4.8 percent in 2015 to 6.4 percent in 2016 and stood at 7.7 percent year over year in February 2017. Unemployment was 10.5 percent in September 2016 and remains particularly high among youth (26.7 percent) and women (20.0 percent). Despite fiscal consolidation in 2016, the fiscal and current account deficits remained large, and public debt increased, reflecting in part the assumption of government-guaranteed debt. International reserves, while still ample, have declined rapidly.
International Monetary Fund. Middle East and Central Asia Dept.
This paper discusses the recent economic developments, outlook, risks, and policies required to foster sustainable economic growth of Algeria. Growth was sustained in 2015 while inflation picked up. The budget deficit reached a record high in 2015 because of the collapse in hydrocarbon revenues and a significant fiscal expansion. Beyond 2016, the outlook hinges on the strength of the policy response to the oil price shock. The collapse in oil prices points to the urgent need to reshape Algeria’s growth model. Algeria needs to undertake ambitious and sustained consolidation combined with a critical mass of structural reforms to diversify its economy and promote private sector-led growth and job creation.
International Monetary Fund. Middle East and Central Asia Dept.
This paper develops a structural macroeconomic model for Algeria that can help inform the discussion of the policy choices faced by the authorities. The model captures the core dynamics of Algeria’s macro-economy and provides an organizing framework for forecasting and policy analysis that can facilitate an assessment of the optimal policy responses to oil shocks and the implications for macroeconomic stability. This paper also examines Algeria’s main subsidies and proposes reform strategies, drawing on cross-country experiences, and discusses the channels through which a prolonged period of low oil prices may affect the banking sector, together with the policies needed to mitigate emerging financial stability risks.
International Monetary Fund. Monetary and Capital Markets Department
This paper discusses key findings of the Financial System Stability Assessment on Algeria. The global crisis has had virtually no impact on Algeria’s financial system, which remains stable overall but thoroughly underdeveloped. Pervasive exchange controls, widespread public ownership, and an abundance of domestic funding have protected banks from external shocks. Financial sector reforms have been pushed to the backburner by the emergence of global financial and regional political turmoil, with privatization of banks halted and consumer lending suspended. The authorities have also made progress in a number of areas implementing the recommendations of the 2007 Financial Sector Assessment Program update.
International Monetary Fund. Middle East and Central Asia Dept.
This Selected Issues paper examines the options and strategies for designing a fiscal framework for Algeria. It suggests that given the expected lifetime of hydrocarbon reserves, ensuring long-term sustainability and saving for future generations should be the priorities of fiscal policy. The fiscal framework also needs to be supported by an adequate institutional arrangement. Overall, the reserves management capacity should be strengthened. The budget law needs to incorporate the new fiscal rule and define the way to enforce it. For the sake of smooth transition, the management of the sovereign wealth fund should be the responsibility of the central bank, which already has the capacity and experience in reserves management.
Mr. Adolfo Barajas, Mr. Ralph Chami, and Mr. Seyed Reza Yousefi
A large theoretical and empirical literature has focused on the impact of financial deepening on economic growth throughout the world. This paper contributes to the literature by investigating whether this impact differs across regions, income levels, and types of economy. Using a rich dataset for 150 countries for the period 1975–2005, dynamic panel estimation results suggest that the beneficial effect of financial deepening on economic growth in fact displays measurable heterogeneity; it is generally smaller in oil exporting countries; in certain regions, such as the Middle East and North Africa (MENA); and in lower-income countries. Further analysis suggests that these differences might be driven by regulatory/supervisory characteristics and related to differences in the ability to provide widespread access to financial services.
Mr. Noriaki Kinoshita and Mr. Cameron McLoughlin
The degree of an economy’s monetization, which has an important implication on economic growth, can be affected by the conduct of monetary policy, financial sector reform, and episodes of financial crises. The paper finds that monetization--measured by the ratio of broad money to nominal GDP-- in low- to middle-income countries is significantly correlated with per-capita GDP, real interest rates, and financial sector reform. It suggests that maintaining an upward momentum in monetization can be an important policy objective, particularly for low-income countries, and that monetary and financial sector policies need to be conducive to enhancing monetization.
International Monetary Fund
This report reviews the Article IV Consultation with Algeria on economic developments and policies. Algeria has enjoyed several years of strong economic performance driven by public spending, but continues to face important challenges. Nonhydrocarbon (NH) growth and job creation are largely sustained by public spending, highlighting the pressing need to accelerate structural reforms to diversify the economy, letting a competitive and outward-oriented private sector emerge. Executive Directors welcomed Algeria’s strong economic performance in recent years, with solid NH growth and low inflation.