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International Monetary Fund. Strategy, Policy, & Review Department
This note presents key results from the surveys of country authorities, IMF Executive Directors (EDs), and mission chiefs (MCs) to inform the Comprehensive Surveillance Review (CSR). Key takeaways and cross-cutting themes that emerge are Trends, Policy Challenges, Surveillance Priorities, Surveillance modalities and Traction.
International Monetary Fund. Strategy, Policy, & Review Department
Fund surveillance needs to evolve to face the economic and financial challenges that will shape the global landscape for years to come. This paper first takes stock of the current economic and financial landscape. To better serve the membership in this context, Fund surveillance should be prioritized around four key priorities: (i) confronting risks and uncertainties: policymakers will need to actively manage the risks of a highly uncertain outlook; (ii) preempting and mitigating adverse spillovers: shifting patterns of global economic integration will bring about new channels for contagion and policy spillovers; (iii) fostering economic sustainability: a broader understanding of sustainability to better account for the impact of economic and non-economic developments on stability; and (iv) unified policy advice: better accounting for the trade-offs and synergies among different policy combinations in the face of limited policy space and overlapping priorities, tailored to country-specific circumstances. These priorities should further enhance the traction of Fund surveillance.
International Monetary Fund. Strategy, Policy, & Review Department
Modern Fund surveillance needs to be more targeted, topical and timely, better interconnected and better informed. Modernizing surveillance will likely require additional resources, although estimates are highly uncertain at this stage. The paper offers a tentative costing of new proposals with significant budgetary implications. Other proposals could rely on optimizing processes, while others are underway and funded separately; the resource implications of yet others are being picked up in context of other workstreams. Estimates do not include short-term transition costs or pressures on support services and are subject to a significant degree of uncertainty. A flexible approach to implementing the new modalities, characterized by experimentation and learning-by- doing—a “sandbox” for new modalities—is proposed.
International Monetary Fund
Evenhandedness of the Fund’s analysis and advice is critical to the effectiveness of its engagement with member countries. In this regard, both actual and perceived lack of evenhandedness can be detrimental to the Fund’s credibility and legitimacy. While perceptions of evenhandedness often reflect views about the full range of Fund activities, Fund surveillance is an important contributor to perceptions. Moreover, the consistency of the Fund’s analysis and advice will likely be scrutinized more closely in an interconnected world.
International Monetary Fund
In March 2009, the Fund established a new Framework Administered Account to administer external financial resources for selected Fund Activities (the “SFA Instrument”). The financing of activities under the terms of the SFA Instrument is implemented through the establishment and operation of a subaccount within the SFA. This paper requests Executive Board approval to establish the Kuwait Subaccount for Selected Fund Activities (the “Subaccount”) under the terms of the SFA instrument.
International Monetary Fund
On May 21, 2008, the Executive Board discussed the report of the Independent Evaluation Office (IEO) on “Aspects of IMF Corporate Governance – Including the Role of the Executive Board”. The Joint Statement issued by the Executive Board and the Managing Director following the Board discussion noted that many of the issues raised by the IEO were complex and interrelated. Furthermore, the follow-up discussion would require the engagement of all parties at many different levels, involving not only the Executive Board and Management, but also the Fund’s membership and other stakeholders more broadly. This report presents the recommendations of the Working Group, based on work carried out during June-July 2008. The proposed detailed work plan in Table 1 is an integral part of this report. Section II of the report describes the work streams. Section III discusses issues beyond the IEO report and proposes a monitoring process. Section IV presents the recommendations.
International Monetary Fund
Sovereign Wealth Funds (SWFs) are becoming increasingly important in the international monetary and financial system, attracting growing attention. SWFs are government-owned investment funds, set up for a variety of macroeconomic purposes. They are commonly funded by the transfer of foreign exchange assets that are invested long term, overseas. SWFs are not new, and some of the longer-established funds—for example those of Kuwait, Abu Dhabi, and Singapore—have existed for decades. However, high oil prices, financial globalization, and sustained, large global imbalances have resulted in the rapid accumulation of foreign assets particularly by oil exporters and several Asian countries. As a result, the number and size of SWFs are rising fast and their presence in international capital markets is becoming more prominent.
International Monetary Fund
This paper addresses issues in financial sector regulation from two perspectives. First, it reports on the state of implementation of financial regulatory standards across banking, insurance, and securities sectors in a select group of Fund member countries. Second, it raises issues relating to the design of these three sector standards, arising from the implementation experience and the evolving structure of financial systems. In this regard, the paper identifies a few emerging regulatory risks and some cross-sectoral issues that may warrant further guidance by standard setters.