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International Monetary Fund. Legal Dept., International Monetary Fund. Monetary and Capital Markets Department, International Monetary Fund. Strategy, Policy, &, Review Department, and International Monetary Fund. Research Dept.
This paper reviews the Fund’s policy on multiple currency practices (MCPs). There remain strong economic and legal reasons to retain a policy on MCPs. The over-arching aim of the review is to make the policy and its application more effective. Based on this review, the paper proposes initial considerations for reforming features of the policy that have created challenges. • Clarifying the concept of “official action” to focus on measures that segment FX markets. • Eliminating potentiality. • Updating the threshold for permissible FX spreads. • Adjusting approval policies. • Reviewing links with capital transactions. • Considering merits of a remedial framework.
Ms. Nese Erbil
This paper examines the cyclicality of fiscal behavior in 28 developing oil-producing countries (OPCs) during 1990-2009. After testing five fiscal measures - government expenditure, consumption, investment, non-oil revenue, and non-oil primary balance - and correcting for reverse causality between non-oil output and fiscal variables, the results suggest that all of the five fiscal variables are strongly procyclical in the full sample. Also, the results are not uniform across income groups: expenditure is procyclical in the low and middle-income countries, while it is countercyclical in the high-income countries. Fiscal policy tends to be affected by the external financing constraints in the middle- and high-income groups. However, the quality of institutions and political structure appear to be more significant for the low-income group.
International Monetary Fund

Abstract

There are few areas of economic policy-making in which the returns to good decisions are so high-and the punishment of bad decisions so cruel-as in the management of natural resource wealth. Rich endowments of oil, gas and minerals have set some countries on courses of sustained and robust prosperity; but they have left others riddled with corruption and persistent poverty, with little of lasting value to show for squandered wealth. And amongst the most important of these decisions are those relating to the tax treatment of oil, gas and minerals. This book will be of interest to Economics postgraduates and researchers working on resource issues, as well as professionals working on taxation of oil, gas and minerals/mining.

Mr. Alfredo Baldini
This paper analyzes the fiscal policy in Venezuela during 1991-2003, by using a number of statistical approaches to analyze trends and cycles of economic output and fiscal outcomes. The business cycle features a strong dominance of short-term cyclical components-each cycle having an average duration of about two to three years. However, the cyclical volatility of non-oil sector GDP is more than two times as large as the volatility of oil sector GDP. On the fiscal side, while oil revenues are independent of the business cycle, all the other main fiscal variables exhibit strong procyclicality. In particular, fiscal procyclicality is higher during good times than bad times, which could be related to the existence of "voracity effects." The discretionary component of fiscal policy is as volatile as the component induced by the business cycle.
Mr. Thomas Baunsgaard
Fiscal policy in oil-producing countries can be profoundly affected by oil revenue uncertainty and volatility. Policy formulation should factor in the exhaustibility of the natural resources and aim at reducing oil revenue volatility passed on to the economy. Past fiscal policy in Nigeria has not been successful in this regard, since both revenue and expenditure have been highly volatile, to a large extent reflecting oil price developments. The paper discusses the role an appropriately designed fiscal rule, nested within the long-run sustainable use of oil revenue, could have in providing a more stable framework for fiscal policy formulation. It also highlights practical implementation and transitional issues.
Mr. Steven A Barnett and Mr. Rolando Ossowski
Oil-producing countries face challenges arising from the fact that oil revenue is exhaustible, volatile, and uncertain, and largely originates from abroad. Reflecting these challenges, the paper proposes some important general principles for the formulation and assessment of fiscal policy in these countries. The main findings can be summarized in some key guidelines: the non-oil balance should feature prominently in the formulation of fiscal policy; it should generally be adjusted gradually; the government should strive to accumulate substantial financial assets over the period of oil production; and, where necessary, strategies should aim at breaking procyclical fiscal responses to volatile oil prices.
Mr. Ugo Fasano-Filho
The main purposes of this paper are to review the operational modalities and experience of oil funds currently in place in Norway, Chile (copper), the State of Alaska, Venezuela, Kuwait, and Oman, and to draw some preliminary conclusions on their contribution to enhance fiscal management. The outcome so far of their experience has been mixed, with differences among countries reflecting the variety of objectives attached to the funds, the challenges in adhering to established rules, the institutional set-up. and the soundness of the overall fiscal discipline in each country (or state).
International Monetary Fund
A short-run macroeconomic model is estimated for Venezuela, in order to examine the hypothesis that the availability of oil resources may entail a confidence effect—on perceived future incomes—that influences the expenditure and portfolio behavior of economic agents. Such confidence effect is found to be empirically significant. Model simulations reveal that the impact of oil price changes on the level and variability of money demand, balance of payments and inflation are significantly more pronounced in the presence of the confidence effect than in its absence. This has significant implictions for the size and structure of the needed policy interventions.