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Majdi Debbich
This paper uses an untapped source of satellite-recorded nightlights and gas flaring data to characterize the contraction of economic activity in Yemen throughout the ongoing conflict that erupted in 2015. Using estimated nightlights elasticities on a sample of 72 countries for real GDP and 28 countries for oil GDP over 6 years, I derive oil and non-oil GDP growth for Yemen. I show that real GDP contracted by a cumulative 24 percent over 2015-17 against 50 percent according to official figures. I also find that the impact of the conflict has been geographically uneven with economic activity contracting more in some governorates than in others.
Mr. Giovanni Melina, Hoda Selim, and Concepcion Verdugo-Yepes
This paper argues that oil revenue management and public investment in Congo are vulnerable to corruption as a result of limited transparency and accountability. Corruption has potentially contributed to poor macro-fiscal outcomes. The paper acknowledges the authorities’ anti-corruption efforts made so far and proposes further critical reforms to reduce remaining vulnerabilities. Using a dynamic stochastic general equilibrium model results show that, depending on the reforms adopted, the potential additional growth can range between 0.8 to 1.8 percent per year over the next 10 years, and debt can decline by 2.25 to 3 percent of GDP per year over the same period. These results suggest that macrofiscal gains from anti-corruption reforms could be substantial even under conservative reform scenarios.
Mr. Rabah Arezki and Mr. Akito Matsumoto

Abstract

A survey of the complex and intertwined set of forces behind the various commodity markets and the interplay between these markets and the global economy. Summarizes a rich set of facts combined with in-depth analyses distillated in a nontechnical manner. Includes discussion of structural trends behind commodities markets, their future implications, and policy implications.

Philip Daniel, Alan Krupnick, Ms. Thornton Matheson, Peter Mullins, Ian Parry, and Artur Swistak
This paper suggests that the environmental and commercial features of shale gas extraction do not warrant a significantly different fiscal regime than recommended for conventional gas. Fiscal policies may have a role in addressing some environmental risks (e.g., greenhouse gases, scarce water, local air pollution) though in some cases their net benefits may be modest. Simulation analyses suggest, moreover, that special fiscal regimes are generally less important than other factors in determining shale gas investments (hence there appears little need for them), yet they forego significant revenues.
Mr. Roberto Cardarelli and Ms. Lusine Lusinyan

Abstract

The recent boom in unconventional energy production is transforming the energy landscape in North America, with important implications for global energy markets and the broader competitiveness outlook. This book, within a unifying policy perspective, examines the impact the upsurge in energy production has had on the manufacturing sectors of the United States, Canada, and Mexico, and of the region as a whole, which produces nearly a quarter of the world’s energy.

Mr. Benjamin L Hunt, Mr. Dirk V Muir, and Mr. Martin Sommer
This paper uses two of the IMF's structural macroeconomic models to estimate the potential global impact of the boom in unconventional oil and natural gas in the United States. The results suggest that the impact on the level of U.S. real GDP over roughly the next decade could be significant, but modest, ranging between 1 and 1½ percent. Further, while the impact on the U.S. energy trade balance will be large, most results suggest that its impact on the overall U.S. current account will be negligible. The impact outside of the United States will be modestly positive on average, but most countries dependent on energy exports will be affected adversely.
International Monetary Fund. Western Hemisphere Dept.
This Selected Issues paper looks at the factors behind the accumulation of cash positions by Canadian nonfinancial corporations. Focusing only on listed firms and running a model of changes in cash holdings suggest that greater macroeconomic and business uncertainty may have induced firms to raise the cash buffer at their disposal over the last decade. This is especially the case for firms in the energy and mining sector, which account for the majority of cash accumulation in the sample used in current analysis. The analysis also shows that firms’ high cash balances are typically associated with higher levels of capital expenditure, which bodes well for the acceleration of business investment in the near future.
International Monetary Fund
In recent years, the IMF has released a growing number of reports and other documents covering economic and financial developments and trends in member countries. Each report, prepared by a staff team after discussions with government officials, is published at the option of the member country.