Legal Technical Assistance

International Monetary Fund
Published Date:
January 1979
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The Legal Department has been rendering technical assistance in banking, central banking, currency, exchange, and negotiable instruments in close association with the Central Banking Service and, to a lesser extent, with the Exchange and Trade Relations Department and the area departments. Similarly, it has been rendering technical assistance in fiscal affairs, in close association with the Fiscal Affairs Department, involving primarily the drafting of legislation dealing with individual and corporation income taxes, indirect taxes (such as customs, excises, and sales taxes, including value-added sales taxes), as well as capital gains taxes, property taxes, and land taxes.

Technical assistance in these matters has taken several forms, but one of two approaches is generally followed. At the request of a member, a draft law is prepared at the Fund and transmitted to the authorities for consideration. Alternatively, the authorities prepare a draft law and forward it to the Fund for scrutiny and comment. Typically, members of the Fund’s Legal Department become extensively involved in the project, in regard to both analysis and drafting. In this, they work in close association with their colleagues in the Central Banking Service, the Fiscal Affairs Department, the area departments, and sometimes other departments as well. Thereafter, as a rule, meetings are held with the authorities to discuss, explain, and adjust the draft legislation. These subsequent discussions frequently involve the participation of Fund legal staff in missions to the country, but they may also take the form of meetings with the country’s authorities at the Fund’s headquarters in Washington.

In addition to participating in legislative work in the banking and fiscal fields, the Legal Department has also rendered advice to, and drafted legislation for, countries in other areas related to the work of the Fund. Thus, members of the Legal Department have advised on the drafting of domestic membership and monetary legislation, as well as on the drafting of relevant explanatory material required for a country to be able to accept and carry out the Fund’s Articles of Agreement (including aspects of the First and Second Amendments), to accept and pay for quota increases, and to participate in allocations of special drawing rights (SDRs). Moreover, they have given advice to officials of international organizations in connection with the drafting or interpretation of clauses in the charters of these organizations, or other relevant texts, involving the SDR or gold, and the valuation of these two assets.

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