International Monetary Fund. External Relations Dept.
A panel of leading economists grappled with the effects of the financial turmoil triggered by the crisis in the U.S. housing market in a seminar on globalization on October 19, one of three seminars on economic-related issues during the IMF-World Bank Annual Meetings in Washington, D.C.
This Selected Issues paper analyzes macroeconomic fluctuations in the Eastern Caribbean Currency Union (ECCU). The paper describes data, along with the estimation technique used to ensure stationarity of the data. The empirical regularities of macroeconomic fluctuations in the ECCU are described, examining the relationship between a set of macroeconomic time series and domestic output, for each of the six IMF members of the ECCU. The paper also explores the determinants of macroeconomic volatility in the ECCU.
International Monetary Fund. Asia and Pacific Dept
Devastating Cyclone Pam hit Vanuatu on March 13, destroying a large share of housing, infrastructure, tourist facilities, crops, and livestock. Estimated damage and losses to the economy exceed 60 percent of GDP.
This paper highlights Grenada’s Request for Emergency Assistance. The near-term economic outlook of Grenada is very difficult. Having grown by nearly 4 percent in the first half of the year, the economy is now projected to contract by more than 3 percent in 2004. The authorities, with the support of the international community, are responding swiftly to the emerging needs of the economy. The authorities have also requested a purchase under the IMF’s policy on emergency assistance for natural disasters for an amount equivalent to SDR 2.93 million.
The fiscal impact of these policies will be significant, but donor support, improved revenue, and budget reallocations will contain domestic financing. The authorities have introduced several policies in response to the disasters. IMF staff supports the authorities’ request for a purchase under the IMF's policy on emergency assistance for natural disasters. Following severe flooding, the impact of cyclone Sidr on Bangladesh has been substantial.
This Climate Change Policy Assessment (CCPA) takes stock of the Federated States of Micronesia (FSM)’s climate response plans, from the perspective of their macroeconomic and fiscal implications. CCPA explores the possible impact of climate change and natural disasters and the cost of FSM’s planned response. It suggests macroeconomically relevant reforms that could strengthen the national strategy and identifies policy gaps and resource needs. FSM has made progress toward its Nationally Determined Contribution mitigation pledge by beginning to expand renewable power generation and improve its efficiency. The authorities plan to continue this and encourage the take-up of energy efficient building design and appliances. Accelerating adaptation investments is paramount, which requires addressing critical capacity constraints and increasing grant financing. It is recommended that FSM needs to increase its capacity to address natural disaster risks following the expiry of Compact-related assistance in 2023. It is advised to improve climate data collection and use, including on the costs of high and low intensity disasters and disaster response expenditure.
The staff report for Belize’s use of Fund Resources and Request for Emergency Assistance is examined. Economic growth has been sustained largely by rising oil production, while inflation has remained under control. Despite rising oil production, economic growth has been low in 2007, in part because of the impact of Hurricane Dean. The authorities are confident that the banking system is stable and adequately capitalized, and largely insulated from international market turmoil.
This paper seeks to determine the effects that natural disasters have on per capita GDP and on the debt to GDP ratio in the Caribbean. Two types of natural disasters are studied –storms and floods– given their prevalence in the region, while considering the effects of both moderate and severe disasters. I use a vector autoregressive model with exogenous natural disasters shocks, in a panel of 12 Caribbean countries over a period of 40 years. The results show that both storms and floods have a negative effect on growth, and that debt increases with floods but not with storms. However, in a subsample I find that storms significantly increase debt in the short and long run. I also find weak evidence that debt relief contributes to ease the negative effects of storms on debt.