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International Monetary Fund
The first part of this paper lays out the process of program design and briefly describes some of the analytical tools--including the financial programming framework, the balance sheet approach, and the debt sustainability template--employed by Fund country teams in advising national authorities on policy formulation. The second part of paper seeks to assess how well this process works in practice.
International Monetary Fund

capital flows and their implications for the efficacy of policy instruments. Third, analytical tools for understanding the factors driving sustained output growth are limited, and such tools as do exist are not always fully utilized in program design. For example, greater use of cross-country growth models could be helpful in informing and disciplining medium-term growth projections. Fourth, the Fund’s debt sustainability template complements the macroeconomic projections underlying Fund-supported programs by articulating their implications for debt dynamics and

International Monetary Fund

Front Matter Page INTERNATIONAL MONETARY FUND Sustainability Assessments—Review of Application and Methodological Refinements Prepared by the Policy Development and Review Department In collaboration with the Monetary and Financial Systems Department and in Consultation with Other Departments Approved by Timothy Geithner June 10, 2003 Contents I. Introduction II. Sustainability Assessments: Experience and Conceptual Issues A. Experience with Use of Sustainability Templates B. Assessment C. Summary III. Calibration of

Mr. Charalambos Christofides, Mr. Atish R. Ghosh, Ms. Uma Ramakrishnan, Mr. Alun H. Thomas, Ms. Laura Papi, Mr. Juan Zalduendo, and Mr. Jun I Kim

intended objectives, both to ensure that the member country addresses its economic problems and to help safeguard IMF resources. Therefore, while this paper pertains to economic policy setting in general, it focuses on those economic programs in which a country’s authorities request the use of IMF resources. 1 The first part of this paper lays out the process of program design and briefly describes some of the analytical tools—including the financial programming framework , the balance sheet approach , and the debt sustainability template —employed by IMF country

Mrs. Isabelle Mateos y Lago, Shinji Takagi, Mr. Ricardo Martin, Ms. Misa Takebe, and Mr. Benjamin H Cohen

reports pointing to a need for fresh analytical work as well as greater candor in presenting the results. 13. As the IEO report notes, the debt sustainability framework was developed in 2002, in large part in response to the Argentine experience, although there is scope for further refinements. 5 In applying this framework, a key question is the debt level at which countries are likely to run into difficulties: the staff work accompanying the debt sustainability template, as well as the September 2003 World Economic Outlook , addressed this question by examining the

Nouriel Roubini and Mr. Brad Setser

IMF), financial sector assessments, balance sheet analysis, and debt sustainability templates. However, they fault the international community for its failure to better define the IMF’s future financing role in emerging market countries. This part of the discussion goes to the core of policies regarding the role of private creditors and the policy on access to the IMF’s financial resources. Many will recall the endless debates about “private sector involvement.” The authors capture these well, showing the complexity of the issue (such as the seniority of claims

Mrs. Isabelle Mateos y Lago, Shinji Takagi, Mr. Ricardo Martin, Ms. Misa Takebe, and Mr. Benjamin H Cohen

the same time, they noted that assessing sustainability in these two complex areas, particularly in a crisis situation, will necessarily entail judgment. It is essential that the Board be provided with up-to-date and comprehensive information and analysis to make such judgments. Directors recognized that steps have been taken since the Argentine crisis to strengthen the basis on which such assessments are ma