Mr. R. S Craig, Mr. Changchun Hua, Philip Ng, and Raymond Yuen
Offshore use of the renminbi expanded rapidly in Hong Kong SAR as China sought to develop an international role for its currency while maintaining capital controls. This prompts two questions addressed in this paper: How far advanced is renminbi internationalization? And, what role does Chinese capital account liberalization play? The first is addressed by testing the extent of integration of offshore and onshore markets for the renminbi using a Threshold Autoregression (TAR) model and finds that there are substantial unexploited arbitrage opportunities. A VAR model is used to indentify factors contributing to this limited market integration and finds that capital controls and shifts in global market sentiment explain much of the divergence in onshore and offshore renminbi exchange rates. To address the second question, the paper shows how capital account measures have been used to promote offshore use of the renminbi more actively in the wake of the global financial crisis, but that this was done asymmetrically with controls on inflows eased to a greater extent than on outflows. It concludes that a more balanced liberalization process will sustain progress in renminbi internationalization.
In April 2009, the Boards of Executive Directors of the International Development Association (IDA) and the International Monetary Fund (IMF) agreed that Côte d’Ivoire had met the requirements for reaching the decision point under the Enhanced Heavily Indebted Poor Countries (HIPC) Initiative. IDA and IMF staff are of the view that Côte d’Ivoire has made satisfactory progress in meeting the requirements to reach the completion point. IDA and IMF staff recommended that the Executive Directors of IDA and the IMF approve the completion point for Côte d’Ivoire under the Enhanced HIPC Initiative.
Burundi’s extreme poverty, post-conflict environment, and persistent fragility created considerable risks to program implementation, calling for extensive flexibility in engagement. The program succeeded in establishing some of the key foundations of macroeconomic stability, mobilizing donor resources, and promoting poverty reduction. A successor program should strike the right balance between reforms narrowly aimed at improving the conduct of macroeconomic policies and other macro-critical reforms. Ensuring public debt sustainability should remain a key program objective. Risks to the new program are likely to remain high but manageable.
Mr. Christian B. Mulder, Mr. Amadou N Sy, Miss Yinqiu Lu, and Mr. Udaibir S Das
This paper offers a policy and operational "roadmap" to policymakers considering setting up an SWF. It should also be of interest to policymakers in countries where SWFs are already in place, to review their existing policies and operations. Finally, it offers an opportunity to identify areas where research in macroeconomics and finance should give further answers as to the adequacy of existing practice related to the setting up and management of SWFs, an area where practical considerations often lead theoretical research. For instance, policymakers should optimally consider both their sovereign assets and liabilities together with their macroeconomic objectives, when setting up an SWF.
This paper discusses Côte d’Ivoire’s preliminary assessment of eligibility for assistance under the Enhanced Heavily Indebted Poor Countries Initiative. The March 2007 Ouagadougou Political Accord provides a roadmap for reunification, national reconciliation, demobilization, and presidential elections. Fiscal consolidation has generated fiscal space while reducing external and domestic arrears. Significant revenue collection efforts and overall expenditure restraint have resulted in a modest primary basic surplus in 2007 and a similar outcome is foreseen for 2008.
This 2006 Article IV Consultation highlights that economic performance of Benin has been relatively subdued since 2003 after a decade of high growth. Slow economic growth has reflected limited progress in addressing core economic vulnerabilities and delays in implementing crucial growth-supporting structural reforms, against a backdrop of an appreciating real effective exchange rate and, more recently, a sizable deterioration in the terms of trade. Notwithstanding further delays in structural reforms, a turnaround in cotton production is helping to revive growth in 2006.
International Monetary Fund. Monetary and Capital Markets Department
This paper analyzes developments in the hedge fund industry. The significant growth of hedge funds, driven by institutional investors, has heightened the desire by the official sector to better understand hedge funds and their activities. The paper examines how one may achieve a better understanding of hedge funds and their market activities, particularly for financial stability considerations. The paper reviews and updates developments in the hedge-fund industry since the previous IMF study in 1998, and considers what progress has been made to satisfy various recommendations and proposals from that time.
Mali has been implementing reforms supported by the IMF through the Enhanced Structural Adjustment Facility (ESAF) and Poverty Reduction and Growth Facility (PRGF) arrangements. Executive Directors commended the macroeconomic management, poverty reduction, and structural reforms, and emphasized the need for strengthening fiscal performance, the finance system, and the effectiveness of the Anti-Money Laundering and Combating Financing of Terrorism regime. They agreed that the ex post assessment of performance under the (ESAF)/PRGF arrangements have helped Mali to stabilize the macroeconomic situation and improve the structure of its economy.
The Gambia showed mixed economic performance. Executive Directors expressed concern about slippages in fiscal policy, which stemmed from the efforts to resolve the Alimenta property dispute and also from shortfalls in customs revenue, and delays in implementing some structural reforms. They encouraged the authorities to implement governance-strengthening measures for enhancing transparency and accountability in public resource management. They welcomed the antimoney laundering law, noted the progress made in improving economic and financial data, and stressed the need to tighten monetary and fiscal policies, and strengthen the financial sector.
This pamphlet describes the IMF-World Bank initiative begun in 1996 to address in a comprehensive manner the overall debt burden of eligible heavily indebted poor countries (HIPCs) pursuing programs of adjustment and reform supported by the two organizations. The aim of the Initiative is to reduce these countries debt to sustainable levels so that they can meet current and future debt service obligations without unduly compromising growth. This pamphlet describes the rationale for and the main features of the Initiative as it was originally conceived in 1996 and its implementation through the fall of 1999, which culminated in the approval of an enhanced HIPC Initiative in late 1999 that is aimed at providing deeper and more rapid debt relief to a larger number of countries. The enhanced HIPC Initiative also seeks to ensure that debt relief is integrated into a comprehensive poverty reduction strategy that is developed with broad-based participation and tailored to the country's circumstances.