Posted on March 18, 2013 by iMFdirect
By Christine Lagarde
(Version in عربي)
I was in Algiers last week, my first time as the Managing Director of the IMF. It was a good visit: we reaffirmed the special partnership between Algeria and the IMF, and I was able to gain a deeper insight into Algeria’s aspirations—and also its challenges in reaching a hopeful future.
Filed under: Africa, International Monetary Fund | Tagged: Algeria, budget, business leaders, Christine Lagarde, civil society organizations, debt levels, economy, employment, energy, external deficits, gas, grwoth, IMF, iMFdirect, inclusive growth, inflation, International Monetary Fund, jobs, labor market policies, oil, private sector, productivity, subsidies, women, youth unemployment | Leave a comment »
Posted on November 16, 2011 by iMFdirect
By Masood Ahmed
(Version in عربي)
Unemployment rates in the Middle East and North Africa have remained above 10 percent over the past decade, the highest in the world. For the young the rates are even more daunting, at a persistent 25 percent: one in four of the region’s young people are without work. Many people who cannot find jobs in the formal economy are relegated to working in the informal sector, for lower wages and without the protections and opportunities that workers enjoy in the formal economy.
The informal economy is large and pervasive—and, often, ignored; however, the experience of those who work in the informal sector came under the media spotlight when Tunisian street vendor Mohamed Bouazizi set himself on fire that fateful day in December last year, sparking the Arab Spring protests.
Estimates indicate that the informal economy in the oil-importing countries of the Middle East and North Africa is substantially larger than in several Asian and Latin American countries. In Morocco, for example, the informal economy is estimated at 44 percent of officially measured GDP. In most other oil importers, it is estimated at close to one-third.
Filed under: Economic research, Employment, growth, Inequality, Middle East | Tagged: Arab Spring, Bouazizi, Egypt, employment, governance, inclusive growth, informal sector, jobs, Labor, Lebanon, Morocco, protest, regulation, Syria, tax, Tunisia, workers | 10 Comments »
Posted on October 13, 2011 by iMFdirect
By Anoop Singh
(Versions in 中文, 日本語)
Recent large equity sell-offs across Asia and safe haven flows into Japan illustrate perfectly the region’s vulnerabilities to further global shocks. While the region’s fundamentals—built up over the past decade—remain relatively strong, economic uncertainties in Europe and the United States pose large downside risks.
The world economy has entered a dangerous new phase and, as the IMF’s Managing Director stated recently, “what makes the situation all the more urgent is that it has implications for every country.”
Our Regional Economic Outlook for Asia and the Pacific emphasizes these risks, and stresses the need for policymakers to remain vigilant and nimble in this extraordinarily uncertain climate. The view from here in Tokyo—looking out at the region—may be more serene than the view from other advanced country capitals, but there are storm clouds on the horizon. Continue reading
Filed under: Asia, Economic outlook, Emerging Markets, Europe, growth, IMF, Inequality, International Monetary Fund, Low-income countries | Tagged: credit growth, derivative markets, domestic demand, downside risks, economic rebalancing, external shocks, foreign investors, global demand, iMFdirect, inclusive growth, inflation, infrastructure investment, International Monetary Fund, monetary policy, overheating, Regional Economic Outlook: Asia and Pacific, stressed banks, unemployment | 1 Comment »