This paper discusses the recommendations of the Sixth Post-program Monitoring Discussions with Iceland. Iceland recently updated its capital account liberalization strategy. The strategy takes a staged approach, starting with steps to address the balance-of-payments overhang of the old bank estates—prioritizing a cooperative approach with incentives—in a manner consistent with maintaining stability. Growth is accelerating in 2015 and is expected to reach 4.1 percent, backed by significant investment, wage- and debt relief-fueled consumption, and booming tourism. The general government is projected to record a surplus of 0.8 percent of GDP in 2015, helped by large one-offs. Small deficits are also expected over 2016–20.
This paper reviews the Annual Progress Report on Malawi’s Poverty Reduction Strategy (MPRS). The poverty situation remained high over the implementation period of the MPRS. The government continued funding activities that have been perceived to have an impact on poverty reduction. The MPRS outlined a number of macroeconomic policies that have been adhered to achieve the macroeconomic targets. These policies have been mainly in the form of monetary, fiscal, and structural policies.
This Selected Issues paper aims at providing an empirical underpinning to fiscal policy reforms implemented by the authorities by estimating the size of fiscal multipliers in Cameroon, using a novel long quarterly data set and looking separately at the impact of changes in revenue, and government consumption and investment. The impact of government spending and taxes depends on country characteristics and the stage of the business cycle. The analysis shows that revenue and capital expenditure multipliers in Cameroon are small and comparable to those of other sub-Saharan African and low-income countries. The revenue multiplier is close to nil which implies that revenue-based fiscal consolidation would be less harmful to growth in the medium term. Compared to its peers in sub-Saharan Africa, Cameroon’s revenue multiplier is smaller as is its tax burden relative to the regional average. Conversely, government expenditure can more significantly affect output in the medium term, although the consumption multiplier is unexpectedly much higher than the investment one.
This paper examines Kenya’s Poverty Reduction Strategy annual progress report. The Investment Program for the Economic Recovery Strategy is Kenya’s medium-term strategy to foster economic growth and reduce poverty. Poverty is defined as the inability to command resources and is a multidimensional phenomenon, a characteristic that makes those afflicted face multiple deprivations owing to interactions of economic, political, and social processes. The government envisages strengthening the macroeconomic framework, a more responsible fiscal policy stance, and the unleashing of private sector participation and investment.
This is the third Annual Progress Report on the implementation of the Ghana Poverty Reduction Strategy (GPRS). Both the budget and the GPRS propose to tackle issues including reduction in the domestic debt, reduction of inflation to single digits, increasing revenue mobilization, curtailing deficit financing, and rationalization of expenditure through effective monitoring. The disbursement of the District Assemblies’ Common Fund (DACF) has improved. The macroeconomic indicators show that targets set by the government have been achieved, which has led to a stable economic environment.
This paper examines the concept of gender-responsive government budgeting, promoted in recent years by women's nongovernmental organizations, academia, and multilateral organizations, and the extent of its implementation by national governments in both advanced and developing countries. Owing to recently developed analytical and technical tools, government budget management systems in some countries can help promote gender equality-to the extent of government involvement in gender-sensitive sectors and programs-at any level of available funding. However, to be fully effective, obstacles such as gender-biased culture, the lack of appropriate budget classifications, and the lack of gender analysis expertise and gender-disaggregated data in most countries need to be addressed.
Insufficient resources and inadequate public expenditure management often prevent governments in low-income countries from providing quality basic education free of charge. User payments by parents are an alternative means of financing basic education. This paper assesses how user payments affect educational opportunities and quality of education for children of poor families in low-income countries. Conditions are identified under which user payments can or cannot improve educational outcomes. User payments, whether taking the form of compulsory benefit taxation or voluntary user fees, are a temporary solution and second-best compared with free-access, publicly financed quality education that is consistent with macroeconomic stability.
Staff Report for the 2018 Article IV Consultation and Seventh Review Under the Policy Support Instrument and Request for Modification of Assessment Criteria--Debt Sustainability Analysis-Press Release; Staff Report; and Statement by the Executive Director for Senegal