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Ms. Sena Eken, Mr. Mohamed A. El-Erian, Ms. Susan Fennell, and Mr. Jean-Pierre Chauffour

Abstract

The Middle East and North Africa (MENA) region covers the enormous area extending from the Atlantic coast of Africa to the borders of Pakistan and Afghanistan in Central Asia and from the Mediterranean littoral to the southern boundaries of the Sahara Desert. The region, defined in this pamphlet to include members of the Arab League, the Islamic Republic of Iran, and Israel, comprises 22 countries with a population of 300 million (Box 1). Its size and population alone make the region economically significant, and this significance is enhanced by its vast human, financial, and natural-resource endowments. It is, moreover, strategically located, enjoys long-established economic and financial links with industrial countries, and boasts a respected tradition of trade. Yet, notwithstanding policy gains in recent years, several MENA countries are yet to exploit fully their economic potential, as stagnant per capita growth and underutilized trade and investment opportunities indicate. Indeed, some countries in the region are failing to benefit significantly from the momentous changes now taking place in the world economy.

International Monetary Fund. External Relations Dept.

On May 28–29, the IMF’s Research Department hosted a conference on key issues in reform of the international monetary and financial system, in Washington. Six papers were presented over the two-day event, as well as keynote addresses by Michel Camdessus, IMF Managing Director; and Jacob Frenkel, Governor of the Bank of Israel. IMF First Deputy Managing Director Stanley Fischer made concluding remarks.

International Monetary Fund

Abstract

This paper reviews the coordinated portfolio investment survey (CPIS) guide. The objectives of CPIS are to collect comprehensive information, with geographical detail on the country of residence of the issuer, on the stock of cross-border equities, long-term bonds and notes, and short-term debt instruments for use in the compilation or improvement of international investment position statistics on portfolio investment capital. This paper discusses the scope and modalities of the CPIS. It also presents key findings of the 1997 CPIS and 2001 CPIS.

International Monetary Fund. External Relations Dept.
For the latest thinking about the international financial system, monetary policy, economic development, poverty reduction, and other critical issues, subscribe to Finance & Development (F&D). This lively quarterly magazine brings you in-depth analyses of these and other subjects by the IMF’s own staff as well as by prominent international experts. Articles are written for lay readers who want to enrich their understanding of the workings of the global economy and the policies and activities of the IMF.
Ms. Sena Eken, Mr. Mohamed A. El-Erian, Ms. Susan Fennell, and Mr. Jean-Pierre Chauffour

Abstract

This paper provides an economic overview of the very diverse countries within the large geographical area. It highlights the economic challenges and opportunities facing the MENA region, the policies pursued by the countries in the region, and the outlook for the external environment. The paper concludes with eight policy recommendations.