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Mr. Ricardo Fenochietto
This paper analyses and compares two different groups of tools, the first to encourage the use of invoices (or payment systems) and the second to refund the VAT to low-income individuals. The analysis contributes to the existing literature by providing a clear characterization between these two groups of tools that are too often misunderstood and offers clear guidance to policymakers on the benefits and pitfalls of them based on available empirical studies and novel data analysis. Briefly, the first group includes a set of regressive and distortive tools (such as, allowing deducting the VAT paid on personal consumption from the PIT and reducing the VAT rate for using electronic means of payments or registration), while the second group includes tools that are less distortionary and improve income distribution (tax credits and VAT rate reduction targeted only at low-income individuals). This paper also finds that allowing the deduction of personal consumption against the PIT’s taxable base (i) did not impact positively the VAT revenue in Guatemala and (ii) worsens the income distribution in Ecuador.
International Monetary Fund. Western Hemisphere Dept.
While Panama has been the most dynamic economy in Latin America over the last three decades (growing 6 percent on average), its strength is being tested by the COVID-19 global pandemic. Panama is a service-based economy that is highly integrated in the world economy and exposed to extreme shocks during the pandemic.
International Monetary Fund. Western Hemisphere Dept.
On September 30, 2020, the IMF Executive Board approved a 27-month arrangement under the Extended Fund Facility (EFF) with exceptional access (SDR 4,615 million, 661 percent of quota, about $6.5 billion) to help Ecuador restore macroeconomic stability and pursue the unfinished structural agenda from the previous program. High frequency indicators point to improvements in economic activity after bottoming out in Q2, while oil prices have been declining relative to earlier assumptions, leaving the macroeconomic outlook broadly unchanged over the medium term.
International Monetary Fund
The global economy is embarking on a lengthy path to recovery with modest growth expected for 2021, after a severe contraction this year. The global forecast is subject to unusually large risks. Emerging markets and developing economies face an uphill battle. Low-income developing countries are in an especially vulnerable position and risk a persistent and significant deterioration in development prospects. Controlling the pandemic and cushioning the impact on the economy are key. LIDCs should adopt targeted containment measures and strictly prioritize spending and refrain from policies that could create long term damage. Multilateral cooperation and extensive support from the international community are indispensable. The IMF has helped EMDEs through emergency lending and debt service relief. Targeted surveillance and capacity development will tackle new policy challenges and react nimbly to the needs of the membership including fragile and small states.
International Monetary Fund. Western Hemisphere Dept.
On May 1, 2020, the Executive Board approved an RFI (US$643 million, 67.3 percent of quota), to support the urgent needs of the Ecuadorean economy in the wake of COVID-19 crisis, and the authorities cancelled the three-year Extended Fund Facility arrangement (US$ 4.2 billion, 435 percent of quota). The macroeconomic situation has since deteriorated, prompting the authorities to request a 27-month EFF of SDR 4.615 billion (about US$6.5 billion, 661 percent of quota), to help restore macroeconomic stability, support the most vulnerable groups, and advance the structural reform agenda initiated under the previous EFF.