Front Matter

Front Matter

International Monetary Fund. Independent Evaluation Office
Published Date:
December 2003
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    Established by the IMF’s Executive Board in July 2001, the Independent Evaluation Office provides objective and independent evaluation on issues related to the IMF. The office opeates independently of IMF management and at arm’s length from the IMF’s Executive Board. It enhances the learning culture of the IMF, promotes understanding of the IMF’s work, and supports the IMF’s Executive Board in its governance and oversight. Further information on the office and its work program can be found on its website (

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    ISBN 9781589063198

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    The following symbols have been used in this report:

    – between years or months (e.g. 2002-03 or January-June) to indicate the years or months covered, including the beginning and ending years or months;

    FY to indicate a fiscal (financial) year. FY2003 is May 2002 to April 2003 and FY2004 is May 2003 to April 2004.

    “Billion” means a thousand million.

    Some of the documents cited and referenced in this report were not available to the public at the time of publication of this report. However, under the current policy on public access to the IMF’s archives, some of these documents will become available five years after their issuance. They may be referenced as EBS/YY/NN and SM/YY/NN, where EBS and SM indicate the series and YY indicates the year of issue. Certain other documents are to become available ten or twenty years after their issuance, depending on the series.

    Message from the Director

    The Independent Evaluation Office (IEO) was established by the Executive Board in 2001 with a view to increasing transparency and accountability and strengthening the learning culture in the International Monetary Fund. This first Annual Report summarizes the activities of the IEO from its establishment through the first full year of operation.

    The report provides a summary of the main findings and recommendations of the first three evaluation projects on the prolonged use of IMF resources, the role of the IMF in recent capital account crises, and the role of fiscal adjustment in IMF-supported programs. It also indicates the status of ongoing evaluation projects on the IMF’s experience with Poverty Reduction Strategy Papers (PRSPs) and the Poverty Reduction and Growth Facility (PRGF); the role of the IMF in Argentina, 1991–2002; and IMF technical assistance. The report also discusses, in Chapter 4, several common themes emerging from these evaluations.

    The effectiveness of the IEO in achieving its stated objectives will depend critically apon the quality and credibility of its evaluations and this in turn depends upon the quality of human resources, the independence of the office, and the transparency of its procedures. I believe the IEO has made good progress on all three counts. We have succeeded in assembling a high-quality international team of experts, with the right mix of insiders and outsiders, to undertake the difficult and complex task of evaluating the activities of the IMF. We have been given an exceptional degree of independence, while receiving unfettered access to IMF internal documents and access to staff.

    To ensure that our procedures live up to expected standards of transparency, we have developed practices, described in detail in the report, which provide opportunities for interested stakeholders to interact with the IEO at various stages, including defining the work program and determining the detailed terms of reference of individual studies. Opportunities are also provided for submitting substantive inputs on items included in the terms of reference of each study.

    The IEO website ( provides a valuable opportunity to inform interested stakeholders of our work and to receive comments. We welcome feedback from concerned stakeholders on both our ongoing work and our future work program.

    Montek S. Ahluwalia



    Contingent Credit Line


    Civil society organization


    Development Assistance Committee


    Evaluation Cooperation Group


    Extended Fund Facility


    Enhanced Structural Adjustment Facility


    Financial Sector Adjustment Program


    Financial System Stability Assessment


    Former Soviet Union


    Heavily indebted poor country


    Human Resources Department


    Independent Evaluation Office


    International financial institution


    International Monetary Fund


    International Monetary and Financial Committee


    Joint Staff Assessment


    Nongovernmental organization


    Organization for Economic Cooperation and Development


    Operations Evaluation Department


    Public expenditure management


    Public Information Notice


    Poverty Reduction and Growth Facility


    Poverty Reduction Strategy Paper


    Private sector involvement


    Report on the Observance of Standards and Codes


    Stand-By Arrangement


    Supplemental Reserve Facility


    Technical assistance


    Value-added tax

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