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Abstract

Mr. Chairman, Governors, honored guests, it is a pleasure to welcome you to these Annual Meetings. I would like to join Chairman Macki in extending special greetings to our newest member country, Timor-Leste, and to wish the Timor-Leste authorities every success in their task of building a new nation.

International Monetary Fund

This Selected Issues paper and Statistical Appendix examines the main developments in the real sector of Cambodia since the mid-1990s. The paper describes the path of overall GDP growth since 1994, and discusses key sectoral developments and constraints that hamper further expansion of rice output and exports as well as the private sector development. The paper reviews inflation and labor market developments since 1998. It also provides a fresh look at fiscal developments in Cambodia since the early 1990s.

International Monetary Fund

This 2011 Article IV Consultation reports that Cambodia’s high degree of dollarization and largely reduced fiscal space constrain the authorities’ ability to cushion shocks. Macroeconomic stability hinges on prudent fiscal policies. The mission cautioned that fiscal space is limited and that greater consolidation efforts are needed to strengthen revenue administration and prioritize spending. The outlook for external debt sustainability has improved on Cambodia’s prudent track record, but potentially large contingent liabilities from public–private power sector projects need to be carefully managed.

International Monetary Fund. Asia and Pacific Dept

Despite the global slowdown, Cambodia’s economy has been holding up, driven by resilient exports and tourism and a strong real estate recovery. Fiscal policy has remained anchored in rebuilding government deposits and maintaining long-term fiscal debt sustainability, while providing adequate financing for Cambodia’s vast development needs. Executive Directors identified greater mobilization of fiscal revenues imperative to rebuild government deposits, and maintained that focus should be on measures that would generate substantial additional revenue and create strong positive externalities.

International Monetary Fund. Asia and Pacific Dept

This 2013 Article IV Consultation highlights that economic activity in Cambodia remained strong in 2013 driven by robust exports, with garment exports helped by preferential access to European Union, and tourism with more diversified destinations. Real estate and construction also expanded, rapidly supported by fast credit growth. Foreign direct investment remained strong partly driven by factories relocating from China and Vietnam. The IMF Staff estimates real GDP growth to remain at 7 percent in 2013 owing to the sluggish global economic recovery, the recent floods, and the slowdown in economic activity during the election period.

International Monetary Fund. Asia and Pacific Dept

Cambodia is a fast-growing, highly open economy, and attained lower-middle income status this year. Over the last two decades, Cambodia grew rapidly (average real GDP growth of around 8 percent) and its integration with the global economy increased sharply, accompanied by an impressive decline in poverty. Going forward, Cambodia's strategic location, China's changing trade patterns, and ongoing regional integration provide further opportunities.1 Important steps have been taken by the government that will help Cambodia capitalize on these opportunities, including energy-related investments to help reduce the cost of doing business and measures to facilitate trade, payments and business registration. Nonetheless, further measures are needed to support sustained growth, including reforms to improve the business climate and policies to mitigate rising financial sector vulnerabilities.

International Monetary Fund. Independent Evaluation Office

Abstract

This evaluation assesses the IMF’s engagement with countries in fragile and conflict-affected situations (hereafter referred to as fragile states or FCS). The role of the IMF in fragile states has been the subject of considerable debate. It is generally recognized that, with its crisis response and prevention mandate, the IMF has a key role to play in international efforts to help these countries, but critics say that it does not sufficiently appreciate the deep-rooted nature of the difficulties such states face or provide financial and technical resources commensurate with their challenges. While many of the issues that demand attention in these countries are outside the IMF’s core competence, and the Fund often has to operate in an environment where key decisions including by the international community are made at the political level, there have been recurrent calls for the IMF to increase and enhance its engagement. The evaluation explores these and other relevant issues by reviewing the IMF’s overall approaches and how the institution has engaged with a sample of current and former fragile states.1