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Mr. Emilio Sacerdoti and Mr. Philippe Callier

Debt relief from multilateral and bilateral creditors is showing results in Africa. In the landlocked western African country of Niger, lower debt service, together with continued significant budgetary aid and higher domestic revenue mobilization, is having an impact on spending in education, health, and the rural sector (see Chart 1). Budgetary allocations in these areas increased by 4 percent of GDP between 2002 and 2007. Debt cancellation yielded a drop in debt service of about 2 percent of GDP between 2003 and 2006. The external debt was trimmed by $1.3 billion, from 76 percent of GDP at end-2002 to 14 percent at end-2006.

International Monetary Fund. External Relations Dept.

How can the mining and metals sector contribute to sustainable progress in the developing world? The International Council on Mining and Metals (ICMM) seeks to help answer this question with its Resource Endowment Initiative, a project launched two years ago with the help of the United Nations Conference on Trade and Development (UNCTAD) and the World Bank. On June 30, Kathryn McPhail (Principal, ICMM) and John Groom (Head of Safety, Health, and Environment, Anglo American plc) presented the initiative’s initial findings to a group of IMF staff.

International Monetary Fund. External Relations Dept.

When Ghana’s new Investors Advisory Council (IAC) held its debut meeting on May 3, members identified 18 problem areas in government policy, which have been assigned to relevant ministries for action within six months. They include regulatory reforms related to land ownership and mining and labor laws; safety and security; infrastructure, especially for energy, telecommunications, and information technology; financial services infrastructure; public sector sensitivity to the private sector; restoration of competitiveness to the mining sector; the economy’s dependence on aid and commodity exports; and the need for a partnership among government, private sector industries, and labor.

International Monetary Fund. External Relations Dept.

When Poland began its transformation to a market economy in 1989, it was in a deep crisis and thought to be facing greater challenges than its central and eastern European neighbors. By late 1991, however, it had begun to recover and went on to register remarkably strong growth in the 1990s. In their IMF Working Paper The “Soaring Eagle”: Anatomy of the Polish Take-Off in the 1990s, authors Mark De Broeck and Vincent Koen explain Poland’s success, put its overall growth performance in perspective, and look at the country’s growth prospects over the next few years.

International Monetary Fund. External Relations Dept.

Over the past decade, Chile’s economic performance has been distinguished by strong growth and increasing diversification. However, copper has long been a chief determinant of the country’s fortunes and still plays a significant role in the economy. In the 1990s, the mining sector and the rest of the economy each grew at an average annual rate of 8 percent—the result of two distinct impetuses: massive capital inflows, which fueled a rapid expansion of production in the mining sector, and profound structural reforms and a stable macroeconomic environment, which spurred growth in the remainder of the economy.