Access to Fund resources under the General Resources Account (GRA) and the Poverty Reduction and Growth Facility (PRGF) during 2005 illuminates several key features and emerging patterns:
In the context of a relatively benign international environment with limited balance of payments needs, recourse to Fund resources has declined across several dimensions: fewer GRA arrangements; lower outstanding Fund resources; and a smaller average access under new PRGF arrangements.
Over the past decade, signaling has become an increasingly important purpose of Fund arrangements. The share of precautionary arrangements in the credit tranches and of low-access PRGF arrangements has increased. More recently, the Policy Support Instrument was established.
Concerning the duration and distribution of access to Fund resources:
- There are early signs of an upward shift in the average duration of stand-by arrangements.
- The bimodal character of access in the credit tranches and under the Extended Fund Facility continued, but may be moderating as the number of exceptional access cases declined in 2003-05.
- While the concentration of outstanding use of GRA resources remains high, the Fund’s nominal exposure to the largest users during 2005 and early 2006 decreased. Accordingly, PRGF borrowing as a proportion of total outstanding use of Fund financing has risen significantly.