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Mr. Ahmed I Al-Darwish, Naif Alghaith, Mr. Alberto Behar, Mr. Tim Callen, Mr. Pragyan Deb, Mr. Amgad Hegazy, Padamja Khandelwal, Ms. Malika Pant, and Mr. Haonan Qu
Saudi Arabia: Tackling Emerging Economic Challenges to Sustain Strong Growth
Mr. Ahmed I Al-Darwish, Naif Alghaith, Mr. Alberto Behar, Mr. Tim Callen, Mr. Pragyan Deb, Mr. Amgad Hegazy, Padamja Khandelwal, Ms. Malika Pant, and Mr. Haonan Qu
Saudi Arabia: Tackling Emerging Economic Challenges to Sustain Strong Growth
Philippe Bourcier and Mohsen Shirazi

Many developing countries could use natural gas to reduce oil imports or allow larger oil exports. What are the economic, institutional, and contractual issues that need attention?

Paulo Neuhaus

This paper highlights that on September 29, 1982, the International Bank for Reconstruction and Development (World Bank) began to offer discount notes under a short-term borrowing program approved by its Board last July. The Bank anticipates that in fiscal year 1983, it will have outstanding up to US$1.5 billion in short-term discount notes and that it will borrow about US$8 billion in the fixed-rate medium to long-term markets. The initial offering of notes is being made in the U.S. domestic markets.

MANMOHAN S. KUMAR

The efficiency of the crude oil futures market and the forecasting accuracy of futures prices are investigated. The accuracy of forecasts using futures prices is compared with that of forecasts using alternative techniques, including time series and econometric models and judgmental forecasts. The predictive power of futures prices is further explored by comparing the forecasting accuracy of end–of–month prices with weekly and monthly averages, using different weighting schemes. Finally, the paper investigates whether forecasts using futures prices can be improved by incorporating information from other forecasting techniques. [JEL A10, C22, C52, E37]

The December issue of the Research Bulletin looks at “Seven Questions about Climate Change” (Rabah Arezki and Akito Matsumoto). The Research Summaries review “Winning the Oil Lottery: The Impact of Natural Resource Extraction on Growth” (Tiago Cavalcanti, Daniel Da Mata, and Frederik Toscani) and “Malaysia: Achieving High-Income Status through Resilience and Inclusive Growth” (Alex Mourmouras and Naimh Sheridan). The issue also includes regular updates on new IMF Working Papers, Staff Discussion Notes, IMF books, and the IMF Economic Review.
International Monetary Fund. Western Hemisphere Dept.
This paper describes recent economic developments, outlook, risks, and policy challenges of the Canadian economy. After almost two years, the effects of the oil price shock continue to reverberate through the Canadian economy. Growth has decelerated, but inflation expectations remain well anchored. With the slowdown in growth, the output gap has reopened. Persistently low energy prices pose an important risk to the economy. The banking system remains sound, but exposure to the oil and gas sector will require higher provisions against expected losses. The policy mix over the near-term should cushion the adverse effects of lower oil prices on the economy while safeguarding financial stability.
International Monetary Fund. European Dept.
This paper discusses the oil economy, outlook, and risk for Norway. Growth has continued to slow in the mainland economy. At the start of this year, oil prices had dropped by roughly 60 percent from their peak in June 2014 to less than US$40 a barrel. The labor market is feeling the sting of the oil price crash. The krone has weakened substantially along with the decline in oil prices. However, a modest recovery should take root next year. Mainland economy growth should be about 1 percent this year and pick up to close to 1¾ percent in 2017.
International Monetary Fund. Fiscal Affairs Dept.
This Technical Assistance report reviews South Africa’s tax system and also examines the fiscal regime with a view to generating a sustainable revenue contribution from mining and petroleum in future. Mining has historically been the mainstay of the South African economy. Mineral exports remain the principal contributor to foreign exchange earnings on the current account. South Africa is not yet a significant producer of crude oil or natural gas. Oil and gas exploration nevertheless shows promise. Taxation is far from top of the list in current challenges facing the development of extractive industries in South Africa. The national goal of economic and social transformation in favor of Historically Disadvantaged South Africans has major impact on the mining sector.