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International Monetary Fund. Strategy, Policy, & Review Department, International Monetary Fund. Legal Dept., and International Monetary Fund. Finance Dept.
The Executive Board of the International Monetary Fund (IMF) approved changes to the Fund’s financing assurances policy. The changes apply in situations of exceptionally high uncertainty, involving exogenous shocks that are beyond the control of country authorities and the reach of their economic policies, and which generate larger than usual tail risks. The changes adopted could enable the design of a Fund Upper Credit Tranche (UCT) program in situations of exceptionally high uncertainty, in particular by modifying the Fund’s financing assurances policies in two ways. The first change allows official bilateral creditors to provide an upfront credible assurance about delivering debt relief and/or financing with the delivery of a contingent second-stage element of debt relief and/or financing once the exceptionally high uncertainty has been resolved. This would help establish that medium-term viability is being restored. The second change extends the use of a capacity-to-repay assurances from official bilateral creditors/donors from emergency financing to a UCT arrangement context. This would help establish adequate safeguards. These changes and their application to any specific country case in a situation of exceptionally high uncertainty would require the Fund to weigh whether it is prepared to accept the enterprise risks that such arrangement would entail.
International Monetary Fund. Fiscal Affairs Dept.
Lebanon’s tax revenue more than halved between 2019 and 2021, in the face of the deepest economic crisis since the end of the civil war. This report identifies tax policy reform options to stop the drain on Lebanon’s tax revenue in the immediate and near-terms and to move toward a more efficient, effective, and inclusive tax system in the medium-term.
Mr. Philip Barrett
This paper updates the Reported Social Unrest Index of Barrett et al (2020), reviewing recent developments in social unrest worldwide since the start of the COVID-19 Pandemic. It shows that unrest was elevated during late 2019, coincident with widespread protests in Latin America. Unrest then fell markedly during the early stages of the pandemic as voluntary and involuntary social distancing struck. Social unrest has since returned but generally remains below levels seen in 2019.