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Ms. Shari Boyce, Mr. Sergei Dodzin, Ezequiel Cabezon, Mr. Fazurin Jamaludin, Mr. Yiqun Wu, and Ms. Rosanne Heller

Abstract

This issue of the Asia & Pacific Small States Monitor focuses on the challenges facing Asia and Pacific small states associated with natural disasters and climate change. Most tourism-oriented economies experienced a robust increase in arrivals, partly reflecting country-specific factors. Among commodity exporters (Bhutan, Solomon Islands, and Timor-Leste) and other Asia and Pacific small states, growth remains uneven: robust activity in Bhutan was driven mainly by hydropower-related construction activities; Solomon Islands experienced a continuing decline of logging stocks and a short-term disruption of gold production; and Timor-Leste’s ongoing depletion of oil reserves has led to a tighter budget constraint and lower government spending in the non-oil sector.

Ms. Shari Boyce, Mr. Sergei Dodzin, Ezequiel Cabezon, Mr. Fazurin Jamaludin, Mr. Yiqun Wu, and Ms. Rosanne Heller

Abstract

Context: Bhutan is a small, until recently fast-growing, lower middle-income country with deep economic ties to India and a peg to the Indian rupee. Growth in Bhutan was robust during the last Five-Year Plan (2008/09 to 2012/13), driven by the development of the hydropower sector (exporting electricity to India) and a credit-fueled private consumption boom.

International Monetary Fund. External Relations Dept.

The authorities of eight Pacific island countries—Federated States of Micronesia, Fiji, Republic of the Marshall Islands, Papua New Guinea, Samoa, Solomon Islands, Tonga, and Vanuatu—have agreed to the final text of a declaration on cooperation, intended to foster confidence in their financial sectors and in that of the region as a whole. The declaration was jointly drafted by staff from the Pacific Financial Technical Assistance Centre (PFTAC) and the Reserve Bank of Fiji, together with supervisory agencies that participate in the Pacific Islands Prudential Regulation and Supervision Initiative (PIPRSI), according to a press release issued by the PFTAC on March 1.

Ms. Shari Boyce, Mr. Sergei Dodzin, Ezequiel Cabezon, Mr. Fazurin Jamaludin, Mr. Yiqun Wu, and Ms. Rosanne Heller

Abstract

By Adam Gorajek, Head of the Economics Department at the National Reserve Bank of Tonga (NRBT) during May 2012-May 2014. This article is based on research conducted in the NRBT.

Ms. Shari Boyce, Mr. Sergei Dodzin, Ezequiel Cabezon, Mr. Fazurin Jamaludin, Mr. Yiqun Wu, and Ms. Rosanne Heller

Abstract

This issue of the Asia & Pacific Small States Monitor focuses on the challenges facing Asia and Pacific small states associated with natural disasters and climate change. Most tourism-oriented economies experienced a robust increase in arrivals, partly reflecting country-specific factors. Among commodity exporters (Bhutan, Solomon Islands, and Timor-Leste) and other Asia and Pacific small states, growth remains uneven: robust activity in Bhutan was driven mainly by hydropower-related construction activities; Solomon Islands experienced a continuing decline of logging stocks and a short-term disruption of gold production; and Timor-Leste’s ongoing depletion of oil reserves has led to a tighter budget constraint and lower government spending in the non-oil sector.

International Monetary Fund. Asia and Pacific Dept

Strong and timely containment measures have successfully prevented a domestic COVID-19 outbreak but have also weighed on economic activity. The real GDP is estimated to have contracted by 3.3 percent in FY2020 and is projected to further decline by another 1.5 percent in FY 2021 due to continued travel restrictions. Economic activity is expected to pick up in FY2022, as COVID-related restrictions will be relaxed gradually. The government is currently negotiating the renewal of Compact of Free Association (COFA) financial provisions with the United States, but terms remain uncertain. The government is considering to repeal the SOV Act and a bill on establishing a Digital Economic Zone was submitted to the Parliament recently.

Ms. Shari Boyce, Mr. Sergei Dodzin, Ezequiel Cabezon, Mr. Fazurin Jamaludin, Mr. Yiqun Wu, and Ms. Rosanne Heller

Abstract

Owing to their small population size, geographical dispersion, and lack of economies of scale, the government sector in the APD small states plays a large role in supporting growth and employment. The importance of the government is even greater in the most remote and dispersed Pacific island countries (PICs). Moreover, some Pacific islands (Kiribati, the Marshall Islands, Micronesia, Palau, and Tuvalu) do not have a central bank and some could face a significant loss of fiscal resources (the Marshall Islands, Micronesia, and Palau) when Compact grants from the United States expire after 2023. Therefore, assessing the impact of fiscal policy on growth is critical for helping governments design fiscal policies that take into account output dynamics and ensure long-term fiscal sustainability. Fiscal multipliers allow us to measure the impact of fiscal policy on growth.

Ms. Shari Boyce, Mr. Sergei Dodzin, Ezequiel Cabezon, Mr. Fazurin Jamaludin, Mr. Yiqun Wu, and Ms. Rosanne Heller

Abstract

The unique economic characteristics and constraints facing small developing states were presented in a March 2013 Fund Board paper Macroeconomic Issues in Small States and Implications for Fund Engagement. While all small states have populations of under 1.5 million, they are a diverse group representing various income categories, but all of them face size-related constraints. The IMF has 33 members2 that are considered small developing states. Three out of four small states are islands or widely dispersed multi-island states, such as in the Pacific region; others are landlocked, and some are located far from major markets.