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International Monetary Fund

This Selected Issues paper on Bolivia reports that it has experienced major increases in its gas reserves, production, and exports. Not only have their levels increased significantly, but also there have been extensive regulatory changes, which range from the privatization of the mid-1990s to the increase in the government’s tax take from the hydrocarbons industry. The government has reached new agreements with foreign oil companies that will allow foreign companies to continue recovering part of their old investments.

Mr. Michael Kumhof and Mr. Dirk V Muir
This paper, using a six-region DSGE model of the world economy, assesses the GDP and current account implications of permanent oil supply shocks hitting the world economy at an unspecified future date. For modest-sized shocks and conventional production technologies the effects are modest. But for larger shocks, for elasticities of substitution that decline as oil usage is reduced to a minimum, and for production functions in which oil acts as a critical enabler of technologies, GDP growth could drop significantly. Also, oil prices could become so high that smooth adjustment, as assumed in the model, may become very difficult.
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. Eugenio M Cerutti and Mr. Mario Mansilla
The hydrocarbons sector has become one of the most dynamic economic activities in the Bolivian economy and the main driver of improved export performance and international reserve accumulation. The central role of the hydrocarbons sector in the economy is attributable to the high levels of investment made in the late 1990s, which permitted much higher production levels, particularly of natural gas. However those positive developments in the hydrocarbons sector have given rise to the possibility of a new case of "Dutch disease." While Bolivia's economy has already seen many benefits from its higher gas exports, especially in terms of lower external vulnerability and improved fiscal stance, the new resources could also limit the development of other economic sectors in terms of output and factor income. This paper explores the transmission channels of Dutch disease, as well as its main symptom, the appreciation of the real exchange rate
Mr. Nooman Rebei and Rashid Sbia
This paper documents the determinants of real oil price in the global market based on SVAR model embedding transitory and permanent shocks on oil demand and supply as well as speculative disturbances. We find evidence of significant differences in the propagation mechanisms of transitory versus permanent shocks, pointing to the importance of disentangling their distinct effects. Permanent supply disruptions turn out to be a bigger factor in historical oil price movements during the most recent decades, while speculative shocks became less influential.
International Monetary Fund

This Selected Issues paper analyzes inflation in Norway with a view to shedding light on this surprising development and the possible near-term course of inflation, using statistical and econometric analyses. The paper reviews recent developments of monetary policy and inflation in Norway, applies statistical and econometric tools to identify factors influencing inflation, and describes the implications of the analysis for policymaking. Using data for six advanced small open economies explicitly targeting inflation, the paper examines empirically whether deviations of the exchange rate from their equilibrium levels systematically affect the conduct of monetary policy.

International Monetary Fund. Middle East and Central Asia Dept.

This Selected Issues paper on Saudi Arabia assesses Saudi Arabia’s role in the oil market and global economy. Saudi Arabia, the world’s largest producer and exporter of oil, has long played a systemically important role in the global oil market. Short-term fluctuations in Saudi Arabia’s oil production have partially reflected attempts to stabilize the global oil market. Saudi Arabia has on several occasions used its systemic role to raise production to fill global demand gaps created by large supply disturbances. The authorities have made significant investments in higher education to enable productive private-sector employment for new Saudi labor force entrants.