The IMF Working Papers series is designed to make IMF staff research available to a wide audience. Almost 300 Working Papers are released each year, covering a wide range of theoretical and analytical topics, including balance of payments, monetary and fiscal issues, global liquidity, and national and international economic developments.
What explains Uzbekistan’s unusually mild “transformational recession” and its moderate recovery during 1996-97? We examine potential biases in output measurement, the role of “special factors”—including initial production structure, natural resources, and public investment policies—and sectoral output developments. The main findings are (i) Uzbekistan’s relatively favorable output record is not an artifact of measurement alone; (ii) public investment has had no significant effects on growth; (iii) the mildness of Uzbekistan’s transitional recession can be accounted for by its favorable initial production structure and its self-sufficiency in energy; (iv) unless reforms are significantly accelerated, medium-term growth prospects are mediocre.