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International Monetary Fund. Middle East and Central Asia Dept.

Abstract

With the recovery in oil prices, MENAP oil exporters will experience visible improvements in fiscal and external balances during 2010–11. Non-oil activity is set to pick up, although more gradually, with lackluster private demand offset by supportive policies. In many countries, accommodative fiscal and monetary policies will continue to be appropriate over the coming year, but with a closer eye on emerging inflationary pressures. Beyond 2011, fiscal consolidation should be under way in virtually all countries to enable them to confront the medium-term challenges of ensuring a sustainable use of hydrocarbon revenues and supporting private-sector development. Financial sector priorities should focus on reducing cyclicality in bank lending, strengthening liquidity standards, addressing systemically important institutions, and improving bank resolution frameworks, while creating conditions for more forceful and effective supervision. Specific strategies will depend on each country’s stage of banking development and the degree to which it has been affected by the global financial crisis.

International Monetary Fund. Middle East and Central Asia Dept.

Abstract

MENAP oil importers withstood the 2008–09 global financial crisis well, having effectively used their limited room for countercyclical macroeconomic policy. As their economies have gained strength, these countries are now in a position to begin consolidating their fiscal positions. The overriding longer-term challenge remains that of creating enough jobs for a rapidly expanding population. To this end, improving the region’s competitiveness and reorienting trade toward faster-growing emerging markets are key, at a time when traditional European trading partners are growing more slowly.