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International Monetary Fund. Western Hemisphere Dept.

The economy appears to have turned the corner but a disappointing fiscal outcome has not eased concerns about debt sustainability. After protracted stagnation following the 2008 financial crisis, there was a moderate recovery in 2015 and growth is set to pick up. Notwithstanding adjustment efforts, the budget deficit remained high, mainly reflecting delayed implementation of reforms. The large funding requirements were mostly met by the central bank, the National Insurance Scheme, and growing arrears. Continued large deficits pose risks to the fixed exchange rate.

Avinash D. Persaud John Plender

The September 2007 issue of F&D looks at the growth of cities and the trend toward urbanization. Within the next year, for the first time in history, more than 50 percent of the world's population will be living in urban rather than rural areas. What are the economic implications of this urban revolution? Economists generally agree that urbanization, if handled well, holds great promise for higher growth and a better quality of life. But as the lead article tells us, the flip side is also true: if handled poorly, urbanization could not only impede development but also give rise to slums. Other articles in this series look at poverty as an urban phenomenon in the developing world and the development of megacities and what this means for governance, funding, and the provision of services. Another group of articles discusses the challenge of rebalancing growth in China. 'People in Economics' profiles Harvard economist Robert Barro; 'Country Focus' looks at the challenges facing Mexico, and 'Back to Basics' takes a look at real exchange rates.

Nigel Bradshaw

The Caribbean Regional Technical Assistance Centre (CARTAC), located in Barbados, is celebrating its first anniversary, and its ambitious work program suggests it got off to a flying start.

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.

International Monetary Fund. External Relations Dept.

Tanzanian President Benjamin William Mkapa’s remarks on the inauguration of East AFRITAC could not have been clearer or more emphatic. If Africa is to define its own economic destiny, it must strengthen its ability to design and implement sound economic policies. And policy ownership and capacity building are what the new regional technical assistance center, which opened October 24 in Dar es Salaam, is all about.

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

Abstract

With few exceptions, countries in the Caribbean region have performed reasonably well in recent years. They will, however, need to accelerate policy actions in a number of areas to address he challenges they are likely to face in the near future.

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

Abstract

The economic performance of most of the countries in the Caribbean region has been broadly satisfactory in recent years, but insufficiently robust to substantially reduce unemployment. In the five-year period ended 1998, real GDP growth in the region was somewhat higher than in the major trading partner countries, inflation declined, and the fiscal and external positions improved. Also, progress was made toward trade liberalization.

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

Abstract

The English-speaking Caribbean region has, for the most part, enjoyed economic stability, modest growth in per capita incomes, and a standard of living that compares fairly well with the rest of Latin America and the Caribbean as a whole. Also, social indicators are generally good and political systems stable. However, the increased integration of the region in the global economy has led to a number of risks that have to be addressed promptly for the countries of the region to accelerate growth and social progress in the period ahead. Although the region faces a number of issues that could be discussed, this paper concentrates on three broad topics, namely the need to: (1) lower the costs of financial intermediation and to strengthen supervision over onshore and offshore financial institutions; (2) improve the public finances—and, thereby, savings—to act as a buffer against external shocks; and (3) advance structural reforms—including further liberalization of trade—to enhance external competitiveness and promote the diversification of exports.

International Monetary Fund
In this paper, the following statistical data are presented in detail: national accounts at current prices, index of industrial production, selected sugar statistics, tourism statistics, retail labor index, wage indicators, operations of the consolidated public sector, central governments operations and transfers, summary accounts of the consolidated banking system, selected interest rates, total exports and imports, financial system credit to the private sector, liquidity position of commercial banks, services, investment income, current transfers, summary of external debt, direction of trade, and so on.
International Monetary Fund
This report focuses on the observance of standards and codes for the Financial Action Task Force on Money Laundering (FATF-40) recommendations for antimoney laundering (AML) and nine special recommendations on combating the financing of terrorism (CFT) for Barbados. The report discusses recommendations on how the AML/CFT system could be strengthened. It is revealed that law enforcement authorities and the Office of Director of Public Prosecutions are under-resourced in relation to their functions. The competent authorities continue to engage in a wide array of joint law enforcement initiatives.