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International Monetary Fund. External Relations Dept.

This paper describes the need for a new framework for international resource transfers. The paper highlights that the only international deal that presently exists on resource transfers is enshrined in the acceptance by the rich nations of a target of 1 percent of gross national product, with 0.7 percent as official development assistance on fairly concessional terms. However, the acceptance of this target by rich nations was grudgingly slow, and the actual performance has been most disappointing.

Martin Shivanan

This paper describes what the limits to growth are. The paper highlights that many critical variables in global society—particularly population and industrial production—have been growing at a constant percentage rate so that, by now, the absolute increase each year is extremely large. Such increases will become increasingly unmanageable unless deliberate action is taken to prevent such exponential growth. The paper also underscores that physical resources—particularly cultivable land and nonrenewable minerals—and the earth’s capacity to “absorb” pollution are finite.

Mr. Peter S. Heller and Mr. Alan A. Tait

Abstract

Many studies on international tax comparisons have been undertaken since the early 1970s.2 While controversial, such studies have facilitated more subtle comparisons of a country’s tax performance than would be afforded by focusing on its simple tax ratio. This paper provides a comparable framework for comparisons of both functional and economic expenditure patterns of countries having similar economic and demographic positions. It also provides an implicit technological norm for predicting the economic characteristics of a country’s expenditure pattern, based on its choice of priorities for functional expenditures.

Mr. Peter S. Heller and Mr. Alan A. Tait

Abstract

One can make hypotheses about the identity of the factors that are likely to influence spending in a given functional sector, and the significance of such factors can be empirically tested. Six groups of factors can be identified: (1) demographic influences, (2) sociological concerns, (3) the structure of the economy, (4) the level of economic development, (5) technological factors, and (6) environmental factors.

Mr. Peter S. Heller and Mr. Alan A. Tait

Abstract

This section discusses the specification of the equations to predict the shares in GDP of each category of functional expenditure. The econometric results appear in Table 3. Table 1 shows the value of the IEC index. Table 4 ranks the countries by the value of their IEC index; a low ranking indicates a relatively low IEC index—namely, a low expenditure share relative to what would have been predicted for the country.

Mr. Peter S. Heller and Mr. Alan A. Tait

Abstract

Many studies on International tax compaisons have been undertaken since the early 1970s. While controversial, such studies have facilitated more subtle comparisons of a country's tax performance than would be afforded by focusing on its simple tax ratio.

Mr. Peter S. Heller and Mr. Alan A. Tait

Abstract

This section analyzes the determinants of the shares of alternative economic categories of public expenditure as a share of GDP. The principal approach in specifying the equations is to assume that a specific technological bias exists in respect of the provision of different functional expenditure categories and that the relative importance of these functional categories in a given country will determine the relative importance of the different economic categories of expenditure used to realize these objectives.

Mr. Peter S. Heller and Mr. Alan A. Tait

Abstract

From a policy perspective, it is often argued that countries tend to economize on nonwage forms of current expenditure, particularly when faced with a budgetary squeeze. Excessive current spending relative to capital expenditure is also inveighed against. If these hypotheses were true, the expectation would be that countries would exhibit higher IEC indices for wages relative to their indices for other purchases of goods and services—and, similarly, for current expenditure relative to capital expenditure.

International Monetary Fund. External Relations Dept.

This paper describes the need for a new framework for international resource transfers. The paper highlights that the only international deal that presently exists on resource transfers is enshrined in the acceptance by the rich nations of a target of 1 percent of gross national product, with 0.7 percent as official development assistance on fairly concessional terms. However, the acceptance of this target by rich nations was grudgingly slow, and the actual performance has been most disappointing.