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Ms. Natalia T. Tamirisa, Mr. Alexander Lehmann, and Mr. Jaroslaw Wieczorek
This paper reviews the characteristics of international trade in services and of the World Trade Organization’s General Agreement on Trade in Services (GATS) framework, which was established to regulate it. Further liberalization of services trade in developing countries, as currently envisaged in the context of the WTO Doha Development Agenda, holds a number of potential benefits, such as underpinning the liberalization of goods trade, but it is also being resisted due to its potential adjustment costs. Two implications for IMF activities are examined: coherence among the three principal international economic institutions and sequencing with macroeconomic stabilization and regulatory reforms.
Mr. Jack Bame

The relevance of the standard measures of international transactions in goods and services as reflected in the fifth edition of the IMF Balance of Payments Manual (BPM) and in the 1993 System of National Accounts (SNA) has been questioned in several recent studies and articles. Alternative measures have been proposed, that either (i) substitute an ownership basis for transactions for the long-established residency basis; (ii) maintain the residency basis but combine net direct, investment income with goods and services; or question the validity of any measures in the form of net balances as a guide to policy. This paper affirms the central role of residency in the international accounts, discusses the supplementary value of alternative proposals, and notes the importance of international efforts to improve and refine the measurement of external transactions based on the principles of the BPM and SNA.

Ms. Benedicte Vibe Christensen

Abstract

This paper examines the effects of three "shocks" - the disintegration of the U.S.S.R., domestic economic reform, and changing relations with other countries- on Russia's balance of payments position. The importance of consistent economic reform and a liberal trade regime is stressed, together with the role of financial assistance.

Mr. Adriaan M. Bloem

( Meyer, 2001 ). In determining this “reaction function” of the Taylor rule, the intensities or coefficients with which the central bank reacts to deviations of inflation and output from their target levels are set to minimize the variation of inflation and output from their targets over time. The Taylor rule framework dates from the early 1990s ( Taylor, 1993 ) and permits a transparent quantitative calibration of a policy’s “relative intensity of reaction” to changes in target variables. The importance to monetary policy of inflation in goods and services transaction

” calculation unless they end almost simultaneously. So the IMF and Bank have to recalculate gaps for each meeting. This can undermine creditor confidence in the calculation, reduce debt relief or aid, and leave a gap to be closed by import or reserves cuts or arrears on debt service. Transaction costs in adjustment and financing negotiations are far too high, due largely to lack of synchronization and coordination. They place an inordinate burden on the staff time of all sides, and encourage duplication of data compilation, analysis of the economy, and document writing

Mr. Robert J. Corker

eventual deterioration of the services balance (excluding investment income) in the face of a real exchange rate appreciation. In general, the services equations had higher standard errors than the trade equations—perhaps reflecting, in part, a lack of adequate price deflators. Table 3. Long-Run Elasticities of Service Transactions Elasticity with Respect to: Service Transaction Relative prices Domestic real GNP World GNP Payments Transport a –6.09 — — Travel –1.86 0.97 — Other –0.18 1