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Mr. Paul Henri Mathieu and Clinton R. Shiells

This paper focuses on the Doha Development Agenda. The paper highlights that over the past 20 years, world trade has grown twice as fast as world real GDP, deepening economic integration and raising living standards. The paper underscores that the launch of a new trade round in Doha in November 2001 was a major breakthrough following the debacle in Seattle in 1999. The new round places the needs and interests of developing countries at the heart of its work, but a successful outcome for rich and poor nations alike is by no means a foregone conclusion.

International Monetary Fund. External Relations Dept.

For the latest thinking about the international financial system, monetary policy, economic development, poverty reduction, and other critical issues, subscribe to Finance & Development (F&D). This lively quarterly magazine brings you in-depth analyses of these and other subjects by the IMF’s own staff as well as by prominent international experts. Articles are written for lay readers who want to enrich their understanding of the workings of the global economy and the policies and activities of the IMF.

Mr. Clinton R. Shiells, Mr. John R Dodsworth, and Mr. Paul Henri Mathieu
This paper explores from a regional perspective the distorted nature of trade in energy products within the CIS countries. The persistence of pricing distortions, barter arrangements, and discriminatory access to pipelines, as well as failure to honor contracts, has disrupted and distorted energy exports to non-CIS countries, undermined energy sector reforms, and distorted investment decisions. The paper focuses on cross-border issues as an integral component of the wider problem of inefficient energy use within the CIS. Several policy recommendations are proposed, including measures to foster greater competition, reduce state involvement, and promote regional cooperation.
Mr. Prakash Loungani and Mr. Paolo Mauro
This paper documents the scale of capital flight from Russia, compares it with that observed in other countries, and reviews policy options. The evidence from other countries suggests that capital flight can be reversed once reforms take hold. The paper argues that capital flight from Russia can only be curbed through a medium-term reform strategy aimed at improving governance and macroeconomic performance, and strengthening the banking system. Capital controls result in costly distortions and should gradually be phased out as part of that medium-term strategy.
Mr. Jonathan C Dunn, Mr. Andreas Billmeier, and Mr. Bert van Selm
Starting in 2005, nontax revenue in Georgia is expected to rise significantly, in the form of transit fees for oil transported through the Baku-Tbilisi-Ceyhan Oil Pipeline. Transit fees for gas transported through the South Caucasus Pipeline are expected to start in 2007. This paper discusses (1) how much additional revenue can be expected, (2) prospects for monetizing gas that could be received as in-kind transit fees, in the light of pervasive nonpayment in the domestic gas sector, (3) the impact of these inflows on external competitiveness, (4) how to put in place appropriate reporting on these additional revenues, and (5) whether these inflows justify the creation of a special natural resource fund.
Mr. Francesco Grigoli, Alexander Herman, and Mr. Andrew J Swiston
The decline in oil prices in 2014-16 was one of the sharpest in history, and put to test theresilience of oil exporters. We examine the degree to which economic fundamentals enteringthe oil price decline explain the impact on economic growth across oil exporting economies,and derive policy implications as to what factors help to mitigate the negative effects. We find that pre-existing fundamentals account for about half of the cross-country variation inthe impact of the shock. Oil exporters that weathered the shock better tended to have astronger fiscal position, higher foreign currency liquidity buffers, a more diversified exportbase, a history of price stability, and a more flexible exchange rate regime. Within this groupof countries, the impact of the shock is not found to be related to the size of oil exports, orthe share of oil in fiscal revenue or economic activity.
Mr. Clinton R. Shiells
Under imperfect competition, Russia and Ukraine may choose to deviate from optimal tax considerations which suggest use of a destination-based VAT regime. Oil and gas trade is a major source of Russian tax revenue, which is collected partly through an origin-based VAT on intra-CIS energy trade. The paper shows that Ukraine may try to capture part of the tax revenue if it has monopsony power. It is far from clear whether Ukraine would succeed in shifting the rents through taxation, since this depends on the form of imperfect competition and the curvature of Ukraine's import demand function.
Alexander F. Tieman
This paper describes the current state of the Macedonian electricity sector. It looks at ongoing structural changes, driven by the gradual adoption of the EU acquis on energy, and comes up with estimates for electricity subsidies. It concludes by discussing the longer term outlook and sketching policy options.
Diego A. Cerdeiro and Dmitry Plotnikov
The effect that the recent decline in the price of oil has had on growth is far from clear, with many observers at odds to explain why it does not seem to have provided a significant boost to the world economy. This paper aims to address this puzzle by providing a systematic analysis of the effect of oil price shocks on growth for 72 countries comprising 92.8% of world GDP. We find that, on net, shocks driving the oil price in 2015 shaved off 0.2 percentage points of growth for the median country in our sample, and 0.17 percentage points in GDP-weighted terms. While increases in oil supply and shocks to oil-specific demand actually boosted growth in 2015 (by about 0.2 and 0.4 percentage points, respectively), weak global demand more than offset these gains, reducing growth by 0.8 percentage points. Counterfactual simulations for the 72 countries in our sample underscore the importance of diversification, rather than low levels of openness, in shielding against negative shocks to the world economy.
Mr. Kangni R Kpodar, Ms. Stefania Fabrizio, and Kodjovi M. Eklou
This paper investigates the impact of domestic fuel price increases on export growth in a sample of 77 developing countries over the period 2000-2014. Using a fixed-effect estimator and the local projection approach, we find that an increase in domestic gasoline or diesel price adversely affects real non-fuel export growth, but only in the short run as the impact phases out within two years after the shock. The results also suggest that the negative effect of fuel price increase on exports is mainly noticeable in countries with a high-energy dependency ratio and countries where access to an alternative source of energy, such as electricity, is constrained, thus preventing producers from altering energy consumption mix in response to fuel price changes.