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International Monetary Fund. Middle East and Central Asia Dept.
The COVID-19 pandemic is having a severe human, economic, and social impact on Mauritania. The economy is estimated to have contracted by about 2 percent in 2020 and the crisis generated large financing needs. The authorities responded swiftly to mitigate the impact of the pandemic while international partners provided grants, loans, and debt service suspension. This, compounded by higher commodity exports (iron ore and gold) and some delays in emergency spending, resulted in unexpected fiscal surpluses and an accumulation of international reserves, which may now be used to support the recovery in 2021–22. The outlook remains highly uncertain and dependent on volatile commodity markets, with sizable downside risks in case new waves of the pandemic spill over into Mauritania.
International Monetary Fund. Middle East and Central Asia Dept.
The COVID-19 pandemic is having a severe human, economic, and social impact on Mauritania. The economy is estimated to have contracted by about 2 percent in 2020 and the crisis generated large financing needs. The authorities responded swiftly to mitigate the impact of the pandemic while international partners provided grants, loans, and debt service suspension. This, compounded by higher commodity exports (iron ore and gold) and some delays in emergency spending, resulted in unexpected fiscal surpluses and an accumulation of international reserves, which may now be used to support the recovery in 2021–22. The outlook remains highly uncertain and dependent on volatile commodity markets, with sizable downside risks in case new waves of the pandemic spill over into Mauritania.
International Monetary Fund. Middle East and Central Asia Dept.
The COVID-19 pandemic continues to impose severe social and economic hardships in Mauritania, with a sharp contraction of output expected in 2020. The authorities have responded swiftly to the shock with measures to contain the pandemic and alleviate its fallout. They are prioritizing health spending and targeted support to the most vulnerable households and sectors in the economy. Nevertheless, conditions have weakened since the emergency disbursement under the Rapid Credit Facility in April 2020 (SDR 95.68 million, about US$130 million or 74.3 percent of quota) and wider external and fiscal financing gaps are projected.
International Monetary Fund. Middle East and Central Asia Dept.
The COVID-19 pandemic continues to impose severe social and economic hardships in Mauritania, with a sharp contraction of output expected in 2020. The authorities have responded swiftly to the shock with measures to contain the pandemic and alleviate its fallout. They are prioritizing health spending and targeted support to the most vulnerable households and sectors in the economy. Nevertheless, conditions have weakened since the emergency disbursement under the Rapid Credit Facility in April 2020 (SDR 95.68 million, about US$130 million or 74.3 percent of quota) and wider external and fiscal financing gaps are projected.
International Monetary Fund. Middle East and Central Asia Dept.
This paper focuses on the Islamic Republic of Mauritania’s Request for Disbursement Under the Rapid Credit Facility. The economic and social impact of the pandemic is rapidly unfolding, with a contraction of output expected in 2020. The authorities have responded swiftly with measures to contain the pandemic and alleviate its fallout. Going forward, prioritizing health spending and targeted support to the most vulnerable households and sectors in the economy remains critical. The authorities are committed to full transparency and reporting of resources deployed for the emergency response, to audit crisis-mitigation spending once the crisis abates, and to publish the results. At the same time, they remain committed to the economic reform program supported by the ongoing ECF arrangement with the IMF. The program aims at using the fiscal space to increase priority spending on education, health and social protection and infrastructure, while mobilizing domestic revenues and maintaining prudent borrowing policies to preserve debt sustainability.
International Monetary Fund. Middle East and Central Asia Dept.
This paper focuses on the Islamic Republic of Mauritania’s Request for Disbursement Under the Rapid Credit Facility. The economic and social impact of the pandemic is rapidly unfolding, with a contraction of output expected in 2020. The authorities have responded swiftly with measures to contain the pandemic and alleviate its fallout. Going forward, prioritizing health spending and targeted support to the most vulnerable households and sectors in the economy remains critical. The authorities are committed to full transparency and reporting of resources deployed for the emergency response, to audit crisis-mitigation spending once the crisis abates, and to publish the results. At the same time, they remain committed to the economic reform program supported by the ongoing ECF arrangement with the IMF. The program aims at using the fiscal space to increase priority spending on education, health and social protection and infrastructure, while mobilizing domestic revenues and maintaining prudent borrowing policies to preserve debt sustainability.
International Monetary Fund. Middle East and Central Asia Dept.
This paper discusses Islamic Republic of Mauritania’s Third Review of Arrangement under the Extended Credit Facility. The program aims at entrenching macroeconomic stability, supporting inclusive and job creating growth, and building international reserve buffers. The authorities plan to use the prospective fiscal space prudently for priority social spending—education, health, and social protection—and public infrastructure. The economic outlook has improved, buoyed by more favorable terms of trade and the upcoming development of a large offshore gas field. Growth is projected to accelerate to 6 3/4 percent this year, supported by a recovery in extractive sectors and continued broad-based non-extractive growth reflecting strong domestic demand and budding diversification. Downside risks related to global economic developments, commodity price volatility, and regional security concerns remain elevated. Considerable challenges remain to entrench macroeconomic stability, support inclusive growth, and build resilience to shocks. The prospective fiscal space should be used prudently for priority social policies and public infrastructure.
International Monetary Fund. Middle East and Central Asia Dept.
Program implementation has been satisfactory. Macroeconomic stability has been maintained, external debt has been stabilized, and several reforms have been launched to modernize economic institutions and the policy framework. Growth is expected to accelerate this year to 3½ percent, supported by FDI and public investment. While the outlook is positive owing to sustained growth in non-extractive sectors, the international environment is less favorable than during the first review. Higher oil import prices and lower commodity export prices weigh on the external and fiscal positions; the economy remains dependent on commodity exports; and debt vulnerabilities and poverty remain high. Downside risks related to global economic developments and regional security are elevated. On the upside, development of the offshore gas field could generate large revenues from 2022 despite short-term costs.
International Monetary Fund. Middle East and Central Asia Dept.
This paper discusses Mauritania’s Request for a Three-Year Arrangement Under the Extended Credit Facility (ECF). The economic outlook is positive, but debt remains a concern. Near-term prospects are promising—supported by some improvement in the terms of trade, foreign direct investment in the extractive sector, planned structural reforms, and growth-enhancing public investment. Risks are balanced: on the upside, possible development of a recently discovered off-shore gas field could be a game-changer starting in 2021. On the downside, the economy remains highly vulnerable to lower metals prices, weather-related events, and regional security developments. The IMF staff supports the authorities’ request for the ECF arrangement.