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International Monetary Fund. External Relations Dept.

Central to the IMF’s purposes and operations is the mandate, under its Articles of Agreement, to oversee the international monetary system. To fulfill this function, the IMF is charged with exercising surveillance over the exchange rate policies of its members. It does this through analysis of the appropriateness of each country’s economic and financial policies for achieving orderly economic growth and assessment of the implications of these policies for the global economy. The surveillance process is intended to identify issues and problems in a timely manner, so that members can implement suitable corrective measures more quickly.

International Monetary Fund. External Relations Dept.
The Web edition of the IMF Survey is updated several times a week, and contains a wealth of articles about topical policy and economic issues in the news. Access the latest IMF research, read interviews, and listen to podcasts given by top IMF economists on important issues in the global economy. www.imf.org/external/pubs/ft/survey/so/home.aspx
International Monetary Fund. External Relations Dept.
The Web edition of the IMF Survey is updated several times a week, and contains a wealth of articles about topical policy and economic issues in the news. Access the latest IMF research, read interviews, and listen to podcasts given by top IMF economists on important issues in the global economy. www.imf.org/external/pubs/ft/survey/so/home.aspx
Abdulrahman K Al-Mansouri and Ms. Claudia H Dziobek
The six member states of the Gulf Cooperation Council (GCC)-Bahrain, Kuwait, Oman, Qatar, Saudi Arabia, and United Arab Emirates (UAE)-have laid out a path to a common market by 2007 and monetary union by 2010, based on economic convergence. To monitor convergence and support economic and monetary policy, comparable economic data for member countries and data for the region as a whole will be essential. What is the most efficient way to produce these data? The authors survey the statistical institutions in the GCC countries and present the case for creating "Gulfstat"-a regional statistical agency to operate within a "Gulf States System of Statistics." Valuable lessons can be learned from regional statistical organization in Africa and the European Union-Afristat and Eurostat.
Mr. Robert M Heath
In the wake of the recent global crisis the international community is giving an increased focus on stability of the financial system, so-called financial stability analysis. With the increasing need for data sets to undertake this analysis, the question naturally arises as to what types of data are needed? While various data initiatives are underway, two initiatives at the forefront are: (1) the IMF/FSB G-20 Data Gaps Initiative (DGI) created by the international statistical community and endorsed by the G-20 Finance Ministers and Central Bank Governors as well as the IMF’s International Monetary and Financial Committee, and (2) the new Special Data Dissemination Standard Plus (SDDS Plus), aimed particularly at economies with systemically important financial sectors. This paper explains the relevance of the DGI for financial stability analysis and the close link with the SDDS Plus. The importance of the SDDS Plus in promoting the dissemination to the public of a core set of data for financial stability analysis is emphasized.
International Monetary Fund. External Relations Dept.

The six member states of the Gulf Cooperation Council (GCC)—Bahrain, Kuwait, Oman, Qatar, Saudi Arabia, and United Arab Emirates—have laid out a path to a common market by 2007 and monetary union by 2010. To monitor this convergence process and support economic and monetary policy, the member countries must be able to provide comparable economic data. What is the most efficient way to produce these data? A new IMF Working Paper surveys the statistical institutions in the GCC countries and presents the case for creating “Gulfstat”—a regional statistical agency. Such an agency could draw valuable lessons from regional statistical organizations in Africa and the European Union (EU).