This paper highlights that 1977 was an eventful year for the IMF. Drawing on the IMF’s resources during 1977 totaled more than SDR 3.4 billion. These were accompanied by a record volume of repurchases, which reduced the total net drawings for the year to SDR 427 million. At the end of 1977, total net drawings on the IMF since its inception were equivalent to about SDR 15.5 billion. In 1977, the IMF also carried out its gold sales to members at SDR 35 per ounce under the IMF’s “restitution” program.
The Middle East and North Africa (MENA) is an economically diverse region. Despite undertaking economic reforms in many countries, and having considerable success in avoiding crises and achieving macroeconomic stability, the region’s economic performance in the past 30 years has been below potential. This paper takes stock of the region’s relatively weak performance, explores the reasons for this out come, and proposes an agenda for urgent reforms.
The Middle East and North Africa (MENA) is an economically diverse region that includes countries with a common heritage, vastly different levels of per capita income, and a common set of challenges (see Box 1). Historically, dependence on oil wealth in many countries and a legacy of central planning in other countries have played major roles in shaping the region’s development strategies.
Concern over the availability and longevity of natural resources has escalated to the point where it finds expression in a question that is so absolute as to have parallels not in the social sciences but in philosophy. Having posed the question, the author examines the conceptual boundaries and practical dimensions of the problem of scarcity of raw materials.
International Monetary Fund. External Relations Dept.
On September 29 at the IMF-World Bank Annual Meetings in Dubai, Abdlatif Y. Al-Hamad, Director General and Chair of the Board of Directors of the Arab Fund for Economic and Social Development and former Kuwaiti Finance Minister, delivered the 2003 Per Jacobsson Lecture, “The Arab World: Performance and Prospects” His remarks are summarized below; the full text is available at http://www.perjacobsson.org.