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International Monetary Fund
As the COVID-19 crisis continues to unfold, uncertainty remains exceptionally high. The Fund has provided extraordinary financial support as well as timely analysis and policy advice during the first phase of the crisis, but additional efforts are needed to help members secure a durable exit, minimize long-term scarring, and build a more sustainable and resilient economy. Against this backdrop, and in line with the strategic directions laid out in the Fall 2020 Global Policy Agenda and the International Monetary and Financial Committee (IMFC) Communiqué, this Work Program puts forward a prioritized Board agenda for December 2020 to June 2021, focused on activities of most critical importance to our members.
Geoffrey Okamoto

elevated uncertainties about growth and trade prospects. And if some countries do need to renegotiate their debts in a post-COVID world, the private sector will have to play a larger role in providing financing assurances to reduce uncertainty, given its increased importance as a creditor. Our members are also asking for policy advice and for help developing the capacity to cope with this severe shock. We must respond while still largely working remotely and unable to travel. Similar operational restrictions have challenged production of one of our key raw materials

World Bank, International Monetary Fund. Strategy, Policy, &, and Review Department

and the World Bank; (ii) scaled-up debt recording and debt management capacity development activities for borrowers that have been supported by increased donor financing; (iii) expanded creditor outreach, in particular with the G20; (iv) the near completion of the revision of debt sustainability analysis frameworks; and (v) the near completion of a full redesign of the IMF and WB policies in relation to responsible borrowing and lending. Looking forward, the MPA aims to make further progress in each of these areas while adjusting to a post-COVID world

International Monetary Fund. Communications Department

.” The authors return to this theme in the concluding chapter, suggesting that many current tax problems can be resolved only by “deeper international cooperation.” I am less optimistic about the outcome of ongoing international discussions of taxation than the authors seem to be. But they make a strong case for their view, and in this, as in all respects, the book is an excellent read. FD RICHARD BIRD , professor emeritus of economic analysis and policy, University of Toronto Market Juggernauts THE PRE-COVID WORLD carried more than its share of economic

Mr. Holger Floerkemeier, Mr. Nikola Spatafora, and Anthony Venables

Creative Class—Revisited . Basic Books . Florida , R. , A. Rodríguez-Pose , and M. Storper . 2020 . “ Cities in a Post-COVID World ”. Utrecht University Papers in Evolutionary Economic Geography 20.41 . Fujita , M. , P. Krugman , and A. Venables . 1999 . The Spatial Economy; Cities, Regions and International Trade . 10.7551/mitpress/6389.001.0001 Ganong , P. , and D. Shoag . 2017 . “ Why Has Regional Income Convergence in the U.S. Declined? ”. Journal of Urban Economics . 10.1016/j.jue.2017.07.002 Gaubert , C. , P

International Monetary Fund. Middle East and Central Asia Dept.

continue to be affected. Further, within these sectors, greater efforts will be needed to distinguish between businesses that will be viable in the post-COVID world and those that will not, with support only going to those deemed to be viable. Coordination across fiscal and monetary/financial sector policies is also needed. If fiscal and financial sector support are withdrawn simultaneously, this could put excessive stress on businesses who would have to make additional tax and loan payments at the same time. 23. Policymakers also need to be ready to respond to a

Barbara Dutzler, Mr. Simon Johnson, and Priscilla S Muthoora

References Acemoglu , Daron , 2020 . “ Remaking the Post-COVID World .” Sixth Richard Goode Lecture . International Monetary Fund . Acemoglu , Daron , and James A. Robinson . 2000a . “ Why Did the West Extend the Franchise? Democracy, Inequality, and Growth in Historical Perspective ”. The Quarterly Journal of Economics , 15/4/2000 : 1167 – 1199 . 10.1162/003355300555042 Acemoglu , Daron , and James A. Robinson . 2000b . “ Political Losers as a Barrier

International Monetary Fund. African Dept.

concessional sources wherever possible. Domestic debt issuance should be expanded cautiously and in line with the market’s absorption capacity. The government will also need to address the pension fund’s financing gap to ensure the sustainability of public sector financing. Ensuring sustainability in the post-COVID world will require strong efforts to control recurrent expenditure, particularly on the wage bill. Figure 5. Lesotho: Qualification of the Moderate Category, 2020–2030 1/ Sources: Country authorities; and staff estimates and projections. 1/ For the PV

International Monetary Fund. Middle East and Central Asia Dept.
The COVID-19 pandemic is having far-reaching consequences for the global economy. Measures to contain the spread of the virus have led to sharp declines in economic activity across the globe, particularly in 2020Q2. The hardest hit sectors have been those requiring intensive human contact, such as tourism, transportation, services, and construction, while, in general, IT-intensive activities have fared better. The economic contraction is most significant in advanced economies. The GCC countries face a double impact from the coronavirus and lower oil prices. GCC authorities have implemented a range of appropriate measures to mitigate the economic damage, including fiscal packages, relaxation of monetary and macroprudential rules, and the injection of liquidity into the banking system, and there are recent signs of improvement. Low oil prices have caused a sharp deterioration of external and fiscal balances, and fiscal strains are evident in countries with higher debt levels.
Mr. Christopher J. Jarvis, Ms. Gaelle Pierre, Mr. Benedicte Baduel, Dominique Fayad, Alexander de Keyserling, Mr. Babacar Sarr, and Mariusz A. Sumlinski

institutions and could feed public anger, triggering uprisings and political instability. Given the health risks and likely strained balance sheets of the post-COVID world, governments will face difficult policy choices. Policymakers will need to win public trust and maintain social cohesion. Thus, governance and anti-corruption reforms will be high-priority goals. This IMF Departmental Paper presents the key areas in which countries of the Middle East, North Africa, and the Caucasus and Central Asia (MECA) can enhance governance and fight corruption to achieve their