Chapter

1 Introduction

Author(s):
International Monetary Fund
Published Date:
April 2005
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16. This document has been developed to accompany the Guidelines for Foreign Exchange Reserve Management that were approved by the Executive Board of the International Monetary Fund in September 2001.1 The work in this area has been undertaken by the Fund as part of the broader work program to strengthen international financial architecture, promote policies and practices that contribute to stability and transparency in the financial sector, and reduce external vulnerabilities of member countries.

17. The Guidelines identify areas of broad agreement among practitioners on reserve management principles and practices that are applicable to a broad range of countries at different stages of development and with various institutional structures for reserve management. In doing so, the Guidelines serve to disseminate sound practices more widely, while recognizing that there is no unique set of reserve management practices or institutional arrangements that is best for all countries or situations.

18. In the course of the Board discussions on the Guidelines, Executive Directors of the Fund asked the staff to prepare an accompanying document that would contain sample case studies of countries that have developed their capacity in the areas of reserve management addressed in the Guidelines. At the same time, the Board requested that this report should not expand or add to the Guidelines and welcomed further consultation with members that would form part of this process.

19. In response, staff from the IMF have prepared this document based on case studies prepared by reserve management entities in 20 countries2 to illustrate how a range of countries from around the world, at different stages of economic and financial development and institutional structure, have developed their capacity in reserve management in the areas indicated in the Guidelines.3 A number of countries included in the sample also contributed to the development of the Guidelines. As with the process adopted for the Guidelines, the preparation of this accompanying document has sought to foster country ownership of the product and to ensure that the descriptions of individual country practice are well grounded. The initial draft was discussed at a meeting held in Washington, D.C. on October 25, 2002 in which 16 case study countries, the BIS, and the World Bank participated. This document has benefited from the insights of the participants and incorporates the feedback received at and subsequent to the meeting.

20. This document is organized as follows. Part I provides a summary of illustrative country practices on how the main sections of the Guidelines are applied. Part II includes the country case studies as prepared by the reserve management entity of each of the participating countries. The Guidelines are shown in Appendix 1, and Appendix 2 contains a compilation of some supplementary information provided by countries.

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