Strong fiscal institutions have contributed to Chile’s macroeconomic stability, and recent reform initiatives have focused on enhancing these institutions and fiscal transparency. This report assesses fiscal transparency practices in Chile in relation to the requirements of the IMF’s Fiscal Transparency Code and confirms that many elements of sound fiscal transparency practices are already in place. Chile’s practices meet the principles of the code at a good or advanced level for 21 out of the 36 principles. This is a good score, compared to the average for Latin American Countries and Emerging Market Economies. On a further nine principles, Chile meets the basic standard of practice. Chile’s fiscal transparency practices are very strong for fiscal forecasting and budgeting, followed by fiscal reporting, while fiscal risk analysis and management demonstrate more mixed results. Further improvements could be achieved relatively easily through the publication of some internal analyses or through a more timely or user-friendly publication of already available information.
This paper discusses Burkina Faso’s Request for a Three-Year Arrangement Under the Extended Credit Facility (ECF). The program aims to maintain macroeconomic stability while promoting sustainable and inclusive growth. Under the program, fiscal space for priority security, social, and investment spending would be supported by strengthening revenue mobilization and containing current spending, especially on wages. Efforts to improve investment selection and execution would achieve more with the resources available. Prudent public financial and debt management along with energy sector reforms would ensure fiscal sustainability and mitigate fiscal risks. Structural reforms would improve the business environment and promote diversification. The IMF staff supports the authorities’ request for an ECF arrangement.
International Monetary Fund. Middle East and Central Asia Dept.
This paper discusses Pakistan’s Seventh Review Under the Extended Arrangement and Modification of Performance Criteria (PCs). All end-March 2015 quantitative PCs were achieved, as well as the indicative target (IT) on cash transfers under the Benazir Income Support program. The IT on federal tax revenue was missed by a small margin, reflecting legal challenges to some of the tax measures and the negative impact of lower global commodity prices. The authorities have taken action to improve revenue and remain on track to meet the end-June 2015 fiscal deficit target. The IMF staff supports the authorities’ request for modifications of the end-June net international reserves PC, and completion of the seventh review under the arrangement.
International Monetary Fund. Asia and Pacific Dept
This 2015 Article IV Consultation highlights that Micronesia’s economy is stagnating, as externally funded infrastructure projects are moving slowly. Difficulties in the business climate, in particular those related to land tenure issues, continue to hold back private sector development. Real GDP growth of about 0.1 percent is estimated for the fiscal year 2014. The Micronesian economy is projected to grow at 0.6 percent in the medium term, while risks on the outlook are tilted to the downside. Growth in 2015 is projected to remain subdued at 0.3 percent, while consumer prices are projected to further decline to negative 1.0 percent thanks to the continued pass through of low oil prices.
KEY ISSUES Economic background and outlook. Tanzania has enjoyed strong and stable growth, projected to remain at 7 percent next year and in the medium term. Inflation is at 6 percent, gradually converging to the authorities’ 5 percent medium-term objective. The external current account deficit remains among the largest in the region, at 14 percent of GDP this year. Fiscal revenue shortfalls and overruns in domestically-financed spending led the deficit to rise to 6.8 percent of GDP in 2012/13. Revenue shortfalls in 2013/14 compared to the budget approved by parliament have prompted the authorities to undertake expenditure cuts during the fiscal year in an effort to meet their 5 percent of GDP target. Based on the debt sustainability analysis, Tanzania remains at low risk of debt distress. Recent program engagement. Tanzania concluded its final review under a Standby Credit Facility (SCF) arrangement, together with its Article IV consultations, on April 25, 2014. The SCF expired on April 30, 2014. Key challenges. Over the next three years, policymakers will face several challenges, including the following: • Step up needed investment in infrastructure while protecting critical social spending. These objectives will need to be pursued following careful prioritization, to preserve government debt sustainability. • Prepare for natural gas. If recent discoveries of sizeable offshore natural gas deposits are confirmed as commercially viable, sizable fiscal revenues would need to be managed to bring benefits to all Tanzanians. Against this background, the authorities are requesting a three-year PSI to be in place by the start of FY2014/15. They see the PSI as an appropriate instrument to underpin the close policy dialogue with staff, provide a positive signal to donors and markets, and safeguard policy discipline. Staff supports the authorities’ request for a PSI.
This paper discusses Senegal’s Seventh Review Under the Policy Support Instrument (PSI) and Request for Modification of Assessment Criteria. GDP growth was lower than expected in 2013 but would increase to 4.9 percent in 2014 with a rebound in agriculture, mining, and industry. All quantitative assessment criteria and indicative targets for end-2013 were met, including on the budget deficit despite a significant revenue shortfall. Structural reform implementation has been slow, with many benchmarks met after their respective deadlines. Despite challenging prospects for 2014, the authorities intend to continue reducing the deficit. The IMF staff recommends completion of the seventh PSI review.
KEY ISSUES Background, outlook, and risks. Economic growth is projected to remain strong at 7 percent next year and in the medium term. Inflation is at 6 percent, gradually converging to the authorities’ 5 percent medium term objective. The external current account deficit remains among the largest in the region, at 14 percent of GDP this year. Fiscal revenue shortfalls and overruns in domestically-financed spending led the deficit to rise to 6.8 percent of GDP in 2012/13. Revenue shortfalls in 2013/14 compared to the budget approved by parliament have prompted the authorities to undertake expenditure cuts during the fiscal year in an effort to meet their 5 percent of GDP target. Based on the debt sustainability analysis, Tanzania remains at low risk of debt distress. A major upside risk for the long term, not yet incorporated in the baseline projections, relates to sizable finds of offshore natural gas that, if confirmed as commercially viable, could bring in large revenues during the next decade. Program implementation. All performance criteria under the program were met, except a sizable breach of the performance criterion on net domestic financing at end-June 2013. The structural benchmark on submission to parliament of the VAT reform for November 2013 was missed. The authorities have taken corrective measures. Macroeconomic and structural policies. Preparations for the draft 2014/15 budget are under way. A VAT reform aimed at improving efficiency and reducing exemptions is ready for submission to parliament prior to the beginning of the new fiscal year. A priority in the next few years is to establish the institutional and policy framework to ensure that, if natural gas revenues materialize, they will bring benefits to all Tanzanians. Staff recommends completion of the third (and final) review under the SCF arrangement and approval of the authorities’ requests for a waiver for nonobservance of a performance criterion and for completion of the financing assurances review.