Posted on October 29, 2010 by iMFdirect
By Masood Ahmed
(Version in عربي )
With the global economy on the mend, countries in the Middle East and North Africa are witnessing a pickup in trade and economic growth. Aided by rising oil prices and production levels and supportive fiscal policies, economic growth for the region as a whole is projected to exceed 4 percent in 2010, almost double what it was in 2009.
In contrast, and unlike many emerging markets elsewhere, the region’s oil-importing countries saw only a mild slowdown in economic growth last year to 4½ percent and are likely to see growth nudge up to around 5 percent this year. However, as our October 2010 Regional Economic Outlook for the Middle East points out, that growth rate is well below the average of 6½ percent a year required to create the 18 million jobs needed over the next decade to absorb new labor-market entrants and eliminate chronically high unemployment. Continue reading
Filed under: Economic outlook, International Monetary Fund, Middle East, عربي | Tagged: business environment, competitiveness, economic growth, education, employment, high productivity, infrastructure, investment, labor markets, Regional Economic Outlook: Middle East and Central Asia, regulation, structural reform, tariffs, unemployment | Leave a comment »
Posted on October 28, 2010 by iMFdirect
By David Owen
(Version in Русский)
Countries in the Caucasus and Central Asia region—especially those that import, rather than export, oil—were hit hard by the Great Recession of 2008/09. The good news is that, today, the outlook for those countries is broadly positive. But, as often seems to be the case in today’s world, this good news is tempered with a word of caution.
According to our latest Regional Economic Outlook for the Middle East and Central Asia, there are a number of downside risks. And the key challenge for these four countries—Armenia, Georgia, Kyrgyz Republic and Tajikistan—will be to take actions now to address these risks. Continue reading
Filed under: Economic Crisis, Economic outlook, IMF, International Monetary Fund | Tagged: Armenia, current account deficits, domestic saving, economic rebalancing, exchange rate depreciation, exchange rate flexibility, external debt, external vulnerability, Fiscal Stimulus, Georgia, Kyrgyz Republic, monetary stimulus, Regional Economic Outlook: Middle East and Central Asia, Tajikistan | Leave a comment »
Posted on October 25, 2010 by iMFdirect
By Anoop Singh
Continuing my travels through Asia for the launch of our October 2010 Regional Economic Outlook: Asia and Pacific, I am writing to you today from Singapore. In my last post, I focused on the near-term outlook and challenges for Asia. Today, I turn to the key medium-term challenge—the need to rebalance economies in the region away from heavy reliance on exports by strengthening domestic sources of growth. This is against a backdrop of the need to rebalance global growth that was emphasized over the weekend by the ministers of the Group of Twenty industrialized and emerging market countries.
Heavy reliance, arguably over-reliance, on exports is a common challenge across Asia. Yet, the policies to address it will differ among the countries in the region. Much of the public discussion focuses on ways to increase consumption, and this is something the IMF has written about extensively in the past. But the role of investment in rebalancing growth is equally important and something that should not be overlooked. Continue reading
Filed under: Asia, Economic outlook, IMF, International Monetary Fund | Tagged: ASEAN, Asian financial crisis, Association of Southeast Asian Nations, business environment, consumption, economic rebalancing, financial infrastructure, foreign investment, G-20, investment, investment climate, medium-term challenge, newly industrialized economies, private domestic demand, public-private partnerships, rebalance global economy, Regional Economic Outlook: Asia and Pacific | 1 Comment »
Posted on October 22, 2010 by iMFdirect
By John Lipsky
The devastating impact of the global financial crisis created a consensus that pre-crisis financial regulation didn’t take the “big picture” of the system as a whole sufficiently into account and, as a result, supervisors in many markets “missed the forest for the trees.” In other words, they did not take into account the macro-prudential aspects of regulation, which has now become the focus of many authorities.
Consensus regarding the need for macro-prudential regulation is particularly striking—previously this type of regulation had been used relatively little and, at present, there are no agreed standards that can be applied internationally. Continue reading
Filed under: Economic Crisis, Financial Crisis, Financial regulation, IMF, International Monetary Fund | Tagged: cross-border exposures, global crisis, Macro-prudential policies: Asian perspectives, macroprudential regulation, Microprudential regulations, Shanghai conference, standard-setting bodies, systemic risk | 22 Comments »
Posted on October 21, 2010 by iMFdirect
By Anoop Singh
I am in Asia this week to launch our October 2010 Regional Economic Outlook: Asia and Pacific (REO) in Jakarta and Singapore. As I have inevitably found during visits to Asia over so many years, the mood here is confident about future economic prospects. Yet it is also watchful for risks that may be lurking over the horizon. This mood matches closely the main messages of our current assessment of the outlook for the region. Continue reading
Filed under: Asia, Economic outlook, IMF, International Monetary Fund | Tagged: capital inflows, currency appreciation, economic recovery, external risks, financial markets, fiscal consolidation, inflationary pressures, macroprudential regulations, monetary tightening, policy stimulus, private domestic demand, Regional Economic Outlook: Asia and Pacific | Leave a comment »
Posted on October 20, 2010 by iMFdirect
By Ajai Chopra
Almost unnoticed, amid the difficulties in western Europe, the other half of the continent has begun to recover from the deepest slump in its post-transition period. The emerging economies in central and eastern Europe will grow by 3¾ percent this year and next—a relief after the 6 percent decline in 2009.
Why was the crisis so severe—and how do we avoid a repeat? We consider just that question in our fall 2010 Regional Economic Outlook: Europe. While the crisis was triggered by external shocks, it is clear that domestic imbalances and policies also played a key role. Continue reading
Filed under: Economic Crisis, Emerging Markets, Europe, Financial Crisis, International Monetary Fund | Tagged: asset price bubbles, balance sheets, bank credit, boom-bust cycle, capital inflows, cooperation, credit boom, economic imbalances, economic rebalancing, emerging Europe, fiscal policy, fixed exchange rates, prudential regulation, regional economic outlook, Regional Economic Outlook: Europe | 12 Comments »