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International Monetary Fund
This paper reviews the first annual progress report (APR) on implementation of the Poverty Reduction Strategy (PRS) in the Republic of Congo. The paper discusses that a number of stages in PRS implementation have already been completed. The PRS is being implemented in an international economic context marked by a severe economic and financial crisis. At the national level, favorable circumstances have enabled Congo to maintain a high level of economic growth averaging nearly 6 percent a year from 2005 to 2009.
International Monetary Fund
This paper reviews the annual progress report on Poverty Reduction Strategy Paper (PRSP) for Republic of Congo. The adoption of the PRSP in March 2008 was followed by adoption of the Operational Action Plan for implementation of the PRSP. The poverty reduction strategy is being implemented in an international economic context marked by a severe economic and financial crisis. The government has also undertaken significant structural administrative reforms with a view to improving political governance.
Andy Berg and Zia Qureshi

This paper explores why increased aid flows require economic policymakers to confront some specific issues. Ensuring that increased aid promotes growth and reduces poverty is certainly the most important task. Empirical studies offer only mild support for aid-boosting growth. However, one study suggests that once one excludes the aid flows aimed at political and humanitarian goals, a positive net effect is observed for the remaining aid focused on economic objectives. This paper also outlines the roles to be played by development partners for making the aid being properly utilized for boosting growth.

MEAD OVER

The AIDS epidemic is straining the limited resources available to many developing country governments. How can governments provide support to those affected by AIDS without neglecting others in need or abandoning important development goals?

Nancy Birdsall and Frederick T. Sai

This paper examines the policy implications of structural changes in financial markets. Domestic financial markets have become less segmented, and the major financial centers more integrated. At the same time, the structural changes in financial markets have improved efficiency by lowering intermediation costs, increasing the ability to hedge financial risks associated with currency, interest rate, and price volatility and opening up access to new sources of savings. The widespread application of computer and telecommunications technology to financial markets has permitted markets to process a significantly larger volume of transactions.