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Shu-Chin Yang and Samuel Lipkowitz

This paper examines the importance of national planning for economic development of a country. The paper highlights that when World War II began, Soviet Russia was the only country engaged in systematic development planning, and then only since 1929, when its First Five-Year Plan was approved. At the end of the War, Asian countries that either had, or were about to, become independent, embraced planning to a much greater extent than countries in any other region.

ATSUSHI IIMI

It is commonly accepted that resource-rich economies tend to fail in accelerating growth because of various adverse effects of abundant natural resources, such as Dutch disease and rent seeking. Using the latest cross-country data, this study empirically readdresses the question of whether resource abundance can contribute to growth. It finds that governance determines the extent to which the growth effects of resource wealth can materialize. In developing countries in particular, the quality of regulation, such as the predictability of changes of regulations, and anticorruption policies, such as transparency and accountability in the public sector, are most important for effective natural resource management and growth. The paper also attempts to interpret the theme and results in the context of Botswana, which is endowed with abundant natural resources but has experienced the most remarkable economic performance in the region. IMF Staff Papers (2007) 54, 663-699. doi:10.1057/palgrave.imfsp.9450020

International Monetary Fund
Equatorial Guinea has recorded one of Africa’s fastest growth rates, as its petroleum industry has expanded and strengthened the country’s economic and fiscal sustainability. Executive Directors endorsed the National Development Plan to enhance productivity and achieve the MDGs. Directors stressed the need for strong macroeconomic policies and structural measures in safeguarding competitiveness and supported the adoption of a fiscal policy guided by a reduction in the non-oil primary fiscal deficit. They welcomed the creation of a Social Needs Fund and a national Financial Stability Assessment Program (FSAP) to complement the findings of the regional FSAP.
International Monetary Fund
This paper reviews economic developments in Papua New Guinea during 1995–97. The nonmineral sector was characterized by uneven growth. Following a period of slow growth at the time of the Bougainville crisis (1989–90), nonmineral growth began to pick up, averaging 5½ percent during 1991–94. However, nonmineral output declined some 1 percent in 1995 following the onset of the financial crisis in 1994, recovered strongly in 1996 with the restoration of macroeconomic stability, and is estimated to have stagnated in 1997 owing primarily to the impact of adverse weather conditions on agricultural output.
International Monetary Fund. Asia and Pacific Dept
This 2017 Article IV Consultation highlights Mongolia’s promising longer-term prospects given its abundant natural resources. In recent years, however, the economy has faced substantial challenges, as external shocks and expansionary fiscal and monetary policies have compounded structural weaknesses. Mongolia remains heavily exposed to external shocks, given its export profile, and a key challenge will be to avoid the boom-bust cycles of the past. The discussions with authorities have focused on improving the fiscal framework and strengthening policy discipline, complemented by structural reforms to boost diversification and competitiveness and by efforts to strengthen and better target the social safety net.
International Monetary Fund
The note provides statistical data on gross domestic product, supply and use of resources, consumer price index, cotton production, cost structure of cotton processing and marketing, government revenue, economic classification of central government expenditure, public investment program, and monetary survey of Chad. The summary accounts of the central bank, balance sheet of commercial banks, balance of payments, foreign trade indices, exchange rates, and other related economic indices of Chad along with indicators of fiscal balance, external balance, and external public debt of CEMAC have been given.
International Monetary Fund
The statistical data on indicators of tourism activity, estimated GDP and components, real GDP, contributions to real GDP growth, changes in the consumer price index, legal minimum wages, summary of trends in public finance, and tax revenue of Aruba are presented in the paper. The data on operational budget of the social insurance bank, government debt, balance- of-payments summary, monetary survey, monetary developments, and changes in sources of broad money with respect to Aruba are also presented.
International Monetary Fund. Middle East and Central Asia Dept.
This Selected Issues paper on Sudan provides a first stock-taking of the scale, main transmission channels and potential costs of poor governance and corruption in Sudan and offers preliminary recommendations. A large body of literature and country analyses confirm that weak governance and corruption undermine economic growth, amplify income inequality and erode public trust in the institutions. According to international agencies and existing literature, Sudan has scored very poorly on compliance with rule of law best practices in the past. Effective implementation of preventive measures is important; particularly in relation to politically exposed persons. Transparency on beneficial ownership of legal persons and arrangements to prevent their misuse for laundering the proceeds of corruption are necessary. Transparency, accountability, and comprehensive communication should be the backbone of governance and anti-corruption reforms in each sector. Rationalizing tax exemptions and phasing out tax holidays would strengthen governance while boosting fiscal revenues.
Simon Willson

As more African countries debate the benefits and the pitfalls of their newfound oil wealth, questions of fiscal transparency and accountability are gaining increased urgency. A one-day workshop in Malabo, Equatorial Guinea, January 27, organized by the IMF and the World Bank, took up the topic, with parliamentarians from the six countries of the Economic and Monetary Community of Central African States (CEMAC)— Cameroon, the Central African Republic, the Republic of Congo, Chad, Equatorial Guinea, and Gabon—and Equatorial Guinea’s national parliamentarians.

CHARLES P. McPHERSON

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.