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International Monetary Fund

This Selected Issues paper and Statistical Appendix provides a brief assessment of Cyprus’s external position and its composition in an international perspective. It discusses estimates of Cyprus’s external position based on partial International Investment Position data as well as on cumulative flows, and compares its level and composition with advanced Organization for Economic Cooperation and Development (OECD) economies and with other accession countries. It finds that a precise assessment of Cyprus’s overall external position is hindered by the lack of data on nondebt stocks. The paper also analyzes aging and long-term fiscal sustainability in Cyprus.

International Monetary Fund
The staff report for the Second Review Under the Stand-By Arrangement (SBA) on the Republic of Croatia highlights fiscal policy and monetary and financial sector policies. The policy implementation under this SBA has yielded sizable fiscal consolidation and advances in structural reforms, despite some snags. The authorities have taken a number of measures to discourage external borrowing, address foreign currency-related credit risk, and strengthen supervision. The health reform aims at improving the financial situation in the sector and rationalizing public spending on health.
International Monetary Fund
This paper assesses key aspects of Bulgaria’s competitiveness. The behavior of a variety of a real exchange rate indicators and export performance is also examined in this study. The Balassa–Samuelson effect refers to the impact of differential productivity growth rates in the tradables and nontradables sectors on the real exchange rate. The following statistical data are also included in detail: total and private agricultural production, income accounts, labor force, employment and unemployment, monetary survey, foreign assets of the banking system, and so on.
International Monetary Fund
The paper assesses key aspects of Bulgaria's competitiveness. The challenge is to stay on course and persist with policies that will maintain and strengthen competitiveness. Implementation of the ambitious reform policy with respect to the pension and health care systems is required. The reasons for and implications of low bank credit to the private sector in Bulgaria, and measures to facilitate prudent credit growth are discussed. The statistical data on the economic indices of Bulgaria are also presented in the paper.
International Monetary Fund
This Selected Issues paper on Hungary describes the main factors behind the evolution of output in Hungary since 1990, and examines Hungary’s future growth prospects with specific focus on the role that structural and macroeconomic policies can play in enhancing those prospects. In this paper, the shortfall in growth relative to the other advanced transition economies is attributed to relatively slow progress with macroeconomic stabilization, stalled structural reform between 1993 and mid-1995, and specific features in the design of Hungary’s reform program. The paper also analyzes debt dynamics in Hungary.
International Monetary Fund. European Dept.

Republic of Lithuania: Selected Issues

International Monetary Fund. European Dept.

This has driven the economy into recession for the past three years. The impact on growth and exports of the parallel structural declines of Nokia and the paper industry has been exacerbated by weak external demand, including from Russia and the euro area. Wage hikes in 2008-10 and weak productivity growth have hurt competitiveness. Rapid population aging is a further drag on growth. Pre-crisis current account surpluses have become deficits and the fiscal position has deteriorated. The nascent recovery is fragile and, absent reforms, medium-term growth will be much slower than before the crisis.

International Monetary Fund

The government’s strong monetary and fiscal policy framework, as well as the structural reforms introduced, have enabled the Canadian economy to respond flexibly to recent shocks and laid a solid foundation for recovery. Macroeconomic policies should remain supportive, with fiscal policy continuing to focus on sustained debt reduction and structural reforms geared toward boosting productivity. Canada’s commitment to exchange rate flexibility has been helpful in facilitating the adjustment of global macroeconomic imbalances. Ensuring that regulatory and other policies support productivity, growth remains a key long-term challenge.

International Monetary Fund. Western Hemisphere Dept.

Colombia’s economy has been resilient to the adverse global shocks of recent years. Inflation has been subdued, credit growth has eased, and financial soundness indicators are strong. The strong balance of payments continues to put upward pressure on the Colombian peso. In 2013, growth is expected to rise and inflation to remain on target. Short-term risks to the outlook continue to be tilted to the downside. The central bank’s intervention policy is geared at containing exchange rate volatility and strengthening external buffers.

International Monetary Fund

HIV/AIDS is a major and immediate concern for Zimbabwe. Current prevalence rates are at a level close to 20 percent of the total population, and at over 30 percent for adults in the 15–49 age group. The number of AIDS-related deaths, and of orphans are indicative of the adverse, current and future impact upon a fragile health-care system, fiscal balance, human capital accumulation, production, and economic growth. The food shortages of the past year have exacerbated the situation, as many patients fail to attain adequate nutrition levels and food intake and their families’ coping mechanisms are stretched to the limit. This chapter presents an overview of recent trends in prevalence rates; discusses the impact on social sectors and the strategies being adopted by the government and the international community to address these; and summarizes quantitative estimates of the fiscal burden and overall medium-term macroeconomic impact of HIV/AIDS on Zimbabwe.