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International Monetary Fund. Western Hemisphere Dept.
This paper discusses Grenada’s Request for Disbursement Under the Rapid Credit Facility. IMF financing support provides resources to the countries’ authorities for essential health-related expenditures and income support to ease the impact of coronavirus disease 2019 on the population. The countries’ governments have responded to the pandemic by swiftly implementing containment measures, allocating scarce budgetary resources to critical health care spending, and introducing income support to the most affected sectors and households. Protection of the financial system will help cushion the economic impact of the pandemic. Measures have also been taken by the Eastern Caribbean Central Bank to facilitate the provision of credit and safeguard financial stability. Going forward, and once the current crisis dissipates, the authorities intend to push ahead with a comprehensive Disaster Resilience Strategy aimed at building resilience to natural disasters. They are also committed to further strengthening financial sector oversight to safeguard macro-financial stability.
International Monetary Fund. Western Hemisphere Dept.
This Article IV Consultation highlights that following the opening of a modern international airport, signs of an economic recovery have emerged, with increased direct flights from major cities in the United States and Canada and renewed interests from foreign investors in tourism projects. The overall fiscal balance has improved over the past few years, and the debt to GDP ratio fell in 2017 for the first time since 2007. However, despite these positive developments, St. Vincent and the Grenadines faces challenges in sustaining the growth momentum over the longer-term. Like other Caribbean economies, its high exposure to natural disasters, limited land, narrow production and exports base, weak business competitiveness, and limited physical and human capital constrain potential growth. The financial system remains broadly stable but has vulnerable spots in the non-bank financial sector. It is important to implement structural reforms to foster private sector activity, by improving the investment environment and strengthening physical and human capital.
International Monetary Fund. Western Hemisphere Dept.
This 2015 Article IV Consultation highlights that the economic situation of St. Kitts and Nevis has continued to improve since the completion of the IMF-supported home-grown economic program in July 2014. Continued rapid inflows under the Citizenship-By Investment program have led to a surge in construction activity, and supported a large increase in government and Sugar Industry Diversification Fund investments and spending, including on the People Employment Program. These factors, together with the ongoing recovery in tourist arrivals fueled rapid GDP growth of about 6 percent in 2013 and 2014. The near-term outlook remains strong, but there are risks on the horizon.
International Monetary Fund. Western Hemisphere Dept.
KEY ISSUES Background: Activity is slowly recovering after a cumulative decline of about 5 percent during 2008–10. Expansionary fiscal policies—largely to counteract the impact of the global slowdown and the two successive natural disasters—led to a deterioration in fiscal balances, with public debt up by about 10½ percent of GDP over this period. The fiscal deficit, however, is expected to narrow this year, largely reflecting cuts in capital spending. In the financial sector, non performing loans remain above prudential guidelines; provisioning and profitability are low; and supervision remains weak. Policy Challenges: Further fiscal consolidation—including by rebalancing government expenditure toward growth and employment generating public sector projects—is required to ensure medium-term sustained growth as well as keep public sector debt on a downward trajectory. In this regard, improving the efficiency of revenue collection and reducing current spending—especially on the wage bill, which is high relative to revenues—will be crucial to allow the government to maneuver fiscal policy. Financial sector weaknesses also need to be addressed, including through strengthening of supervisory and regulatory standards, to promote effective financial intermediation that supports private sector growth. Structural reforms, including infrastructure enhancements and labor market reforms are critical to improve competitiveness and ensure medium-term growth and current account sustainability.
International Monetary Fund. Western Hemisphere Dept.
This paper elaborates 2014 Article IV Consultation, Seventh and Eight Reviews Under the Stand-By Arrangement (SBA), and Request for Waivers of Applicability and Non-Observance of Performance Criterion for St. Kitts and Nevis. The discussions focus on strategies to secure sustainable growth through enhancing tourism, developing cost-effective energy sources, and improving the business environment. It states that the authorities’ commitment to their program is reflected in the 2014 budget, and their plans to save the bulk of the Citizenship by Investment (CBI) application fees.
Mr. Benedicte Baduel and Mr. Robert T Price
The Debt Sustainability Analysis (DSA) for low-income countries (LICs) is a standardized analytical tool to monitor debt sustainability. This paper uses DSAs from three periods around the time of the global economic crisis to analyze the projected trajectories of debt ratios for a sample of LICs. The aggregate data suggest that LIC vulnerabilities improved on the whole during the period prior to the crisis, and that the crisis had a strong short-run impact on key ratios of debt (debt-to-GDP, -exports, and -fiscal revenues) and debt service (debt service-to-exports, and -revenues). Although projected debt burdens increased following the crisis, debt indicators tend to return to their pre-crisis levels over the projection horizon. This may reflect a strong and durable policy response by LICs towards the crisis, or also reflect specific assumptions on the long-run growth dividends of public external debt.
International Monetary Fund
This paper examines the staff report for Dominica’s Request for Disbursement under the Rapid Credit Facility. Dominica has been hit by a number of natural disasters during July–September 2011. Although the impact on growth may be limited owing to the localized nature of the damage, the disasters will have large fiscal and balance of payment costs as the government undertakes the necessary rehabilitation work, including relocation of people from the affected areas. Medium-term prospects remain subdued owing to lack of clear growth drivers, with potential growth estimated at about 2 percent.
International Monetary Fund
The Executive Board of the IMF has approved a disbursement of an amount equivalent to SDR 2.075 million under the Rapid Credit Facility for St. Vincent and the Grenadines to help the country manage the economic impact of Hurricane Tomas. The Board’s approval enables the immediate disbursement of the full amount. The late-October 2010 hurricane inflicted significant damage to agriculture, housing, and infrastructure. The initial assessment conducted by the government estimated the cost of damage at 5 percent of gross domestic product.
International Monetary Fund
Dominica has made significant progress over the past decade in strengthening its macroeconomic policy management. The 2011 Article IV Consultation report concludes that Dominica is emerging from the crisis. Growth turned positive in 2010, but tepid demand and the needed fiscal consolidation will weigh on the near-term prospects. Executive Directors endorse that fiscal policies need to be returned to a sounder footing to correct the weakening fiscal position. Given weakening revenues, IMF staff believes that achieving the authorities’ target will necessitate additional fiscal measures beyond those envisaged in the budget.