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Mr. Amor Tahari, Mr. M. Nowak, Mr. Michael T. Hadjimichael, and Mr. Robert L. Sharer

Abstract

Over the past two decades, sub-Saharan Africa has lagged behind other regions in economic performance. The important overall indicators of performance, however, mask wide differences among countries. On the whole, countries that effectively implemented comprehensive adjustment and reform programs showed better results. Their experiences demonstrate that an expansion in private saving and investment is key to achieving gains in real per capita GDP. The four papers included in this publication provide a cross country analysis that assesses empirically the role of publlic policies in stimulating private saving and investment in the region in 1986-92 and describe the adjustment experiences of Ghana (1983-91), Senegal (1978-1993), and Uganda (1987-94).

Mr. Saleh M. Nsouli and Justin B. Zulu

Abstract

This paper reviews recent experience of African countries in the design and implementation of adjustment programs supported by use of Fund resources.

Ms. Nicole Laframboise, Ms. Patricia Alonso-Gamo, Mr. Alain Feler, Mrs. Stefania Bazzoni, Mr. Karim A. Nashashibi, and Sebastian Paris Horvitz

Abstract

This paper offers Algeria's recent experience with macroeconomic stabilization and systemic transformation from a centrally planned to a market economy. The analyses focuses on the period since 1994 when Algeria embarked on a comprehensive reform program that has benefitted from IMF support, first through a one-year Stand-by Arrangement, and from May 1995, through a three-year arrangement under the Extended Fund Facility. To better understand this experience, this paper provides some background information on Algeria's political history and economic developments during the period preceding the Stand-By arrangement.

Ms. Françoise Le Gall, Ms. L. Effie Psalida, Mr. Pietro Garibaldi, Mr. Julian Berengaut, Mr. Jerald A Schiff, Ms. Kerstin Westin, Mr. Augusto López-Claros, Mr. Richard E Stern, and Mr. Dennis Jones

Abstract

Are the three Baltic countries, Latvia, Estonia, and Lithuania, ready for accession to the European Union? Have their economies overcome the problems of transition? The answers to these questions and their implications for policy are provided in this collection of analyses. Rather than a country-by-country description, the volume provides a cross-country perspective of developments from 1994 through mid-1997. The seven sections of this paper discuss recent macroeconomic and structural policies, exchange rate regimes, fiscal issues, financial systems, private sector development, and accession to the European Union.

Mr. Michael W. Bell, Ms. Kalpana Kochhar, and Hoe Ee Khor

Abstract

This paper reviews China's experience with market-oriented reform since 1978, including domestic reforms, the opening of the economy to foreign trade and investment, and the decentralization of decision making. It identifies special conditions that may have affected China's capacity to implement reforms, assesses the impact of the reforms on the structure of the economy and on its integration into the world economy, examines the effect of the reforms on macroeconomic management and stability, and draws implications for the direction of China's future reform strategy.

International Monetary Fund

Abstract

This chapter discusses principles and consequences of the common agricultural policy (CAP) of the European Community (EC). It shows that agricultural pricing policies aimed at supporting farm incomes were already in place in EC member countries before the inception of the CAP; indeed, in the presence of these policies, the CAP was a logical consequence of the extension of the common market to the agricultural sector. Thus, the flaws of the CAP can be traced back to national policies and attitudes toward agriculture. Recognition of the burden of agricultural support on the rest of the economy, as well as the growing budgetary costs, has elicited a greater public interest in the CAP. Equally, the trade frictions caused by export subsidies have underlined the CAP's international implications. For these reasons, the member states appear more determined than hitherto to bring agricultural expenditure under control. Given the wider effects of the CAP both on EC economies and the international community, it is to be hoped that current efforts at reform will be successful.

Mr. Simon Cueva, Mr. Stephen Tokarick, Mr. Erik J. Lundback, Ms. Janet Gale Stotsky, and Mr. Samuel P. Itam

Abstract

This paper focuses on the independent states that are full members of the Caribbean Community. It provides background information on recent developments in the Caribbean region and lays out the principal policy issues that countries will need to address in the period ahead. The Caribbean countries face several common problems and must deal with similar economic policy issues. Consequently, concentrating on the regional perspective permits a comparison of the individual responses to similar problems. The regional view throws light on the countries' movement toward convergence. The economic prospects for the region are generally satisfactory over the medium term, but the projections depend importantly on the resolve of governments to pursue appropriate policies, as well as favorable developments in the rest of the world. The relatively favorable outlook for the region is not without risks, such as a slowdown in growth in the major trading partner countries or a term of trade shock.