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International Monetary Fund. Asia and Pacific Dept
This Selected Issues paper analyzes the impact of environment and climate change on Vietnam’s economic growth. Vietnam’s economy and population are expected to be increasingly affected by climate change. In addition, the country’s growth model—which permitted quick reduction of poverty—has been unsustainably relying on mining and natural resources. The level of air, land and water pollution has also increased in the country. Well aware of the critical challenges faced by the country, the government has undertaken numerous initiatives and programs to adapt the economy to climate change risks and transform the growth model to support an environmental-friendly economy, but significant challenges remain.
International Monetary Fund

The Bahamian economy began a tepid recovery in 2010, following a sharp recession in 2008 and 2009 in the wake of the global financial crisis. Real GDP grew by about 1 percent. The rebound was driven by the trade, hospitality, transport, and government services sectors. Executive Directors welcomed the gradual recovery of the Bahamian economy. They also called for steadfast implementation of reforms to place public debt on a sustainable path, build fiscal buffers, and enhance medium-term growth prospects.

Sanjay Kalra

Gross National Happiness—a concept closely identified with the tiny landlocked Himalayan Kingdom of Bhutan—may draw a chuckle, but its four pillars— sustainable and equitable socioeconomic development, environmental conservation, cultural preservation and promotion, and good governance—form a large part of what sensible nations aspire to. This philosophy of holistic development has guided Bhutan now for over three decades of general political stability. This stability—and substantial external assistance, including from its large neighbor India—has fostered measured change, economic growth, modernization, and integration into the international community even as Bhutan has sought to overcome the constraints of a difficult terrain and limited natural resources.

KENT OSBAND and CAROLINE VAN RIJCKEGHEM

As part of a proposed two-stage early warning system, we estimate “safety zones” for fundamentals under which currency crashes are unlikely to occur. We depart from traditional regression-based early warning systems and instead estimate the set of fundamentals for which currency crises never occurred and label this environment “safe or near-safe.” For a sample of emerging markets from 1985 through 1998, we are able to classify 47 percent of the observed tranquil environments as safe or near-safe on a 12-month horizon, based on criteria in which external debt and reserves feature heavily. Nonparametric tests indicate that environments we identified as safe or near-safe bear less than a 1 percent risk of a currency crash. The results also pass a number of out of sample tests. [JEL: F31, F47]

Mr. Jorge Roldos and Kenneth Kletzer
In this paper we explore some of the informational problems that constrain the development of credit markets in transition economies. We characterize investment patterns under uncertainty and high costs of entry, when agents learn about the ultimate value of enterprises through production in a Bayesian way. Inefficiencies due to the lack of public information reduce the average return to capital. Under asymmetric information, credit would go to activities that can provide enough co-finance. Credit markets may fail to develop for a while if there is not enough individual wealth to complement credit. Once they operate, credit markets may magnify distortions in equity markets, such as those due to spontaneous privatization. An argument for the sequencing of capital market liberalization is provided.
International Monetary Fund. Secretary's Department

Abstract

The speeches made by officials attending the IMF–World Bank Annual Meetings are published in this volume, along with the press communiqués issued by the International Monetary and Financial Committee and the Development Committee at the conclusion of the meetings.

International Monetary Fund. External Relations Dept.
For the latest thinking about the international financial system, monetary policy, economic development, poverty reduction, and other critical issues, subscribe to Finance & Development (F&D). This lively quarterly magazine brings you in-depth analyses of these and other subjects by the IMF’s own staff as well as by prominent international experts. Articles are written for lay readers who want to enrich their understanding of the workings of the global economy and the policies and activities of the IMF.
International Monetary Fund. Secretary's Department

Abstract

The speeches made by officials attending the IMF–World Bank Annual Meetings are published in this volume, along with the press communiqués issued by the International Monetary and Financial Committee and the Development Committee at the conclusion of the meetings.

Ernest Stem

For the latest thinking about the international financial system, monetary policy, economic development, poverty reduction, and other critical issues, subscribe to Finance & Development (F&D). This lively quarterly magazine brings you in-depth analyses of these and other subjects by the IMF’s own staff as well as by prominent international experts. Articles are written for lay readers who want to enrich their understanding of the workings of the global economy and the policies and activities of the IMF.