Asia and Pacific

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International Monetary Fund. Finance Dept., International Monetary Fund. Legal Dept., and International Monetary Fund. Strategy, Policy, & Review Department
This paper provides the basis for the quinquennial review by the Executive Board of the method of valuation of the Special Drawing Right (SDR). The review covers the composition and weighting of the SDR currency basket, and the financial instruments used to determine the SDR interest rate. In the five-year period for this review (2017‒21), developments in key variables relevant for the SDR valuation suggest that there have been no major changes in the roles of currencies in the world economy. The countries and the currency union (euro area) whose currencies are currently included in the SDR basket remain the five largest exporters and their currencies continue to account for the majority of international financial transactions. Moreover, staff analysis finds that the COVID-19 pandemic and recent fintech developments have no systematic or material impact on the SDR valuation. The paper proposes to maintain the current composition of the SDR currency and interest rate baskets, as well as the method for determining the currency weights and currency amounts in the basket. In line with the Board-approved methodology, the paper proposes updated weights for the currencies in the SDR basket. These maintain the same ranking of the initial weights set in the 2015 review, with slightly higher weights for the U.S. dollar and the Chinese renminbi and, accordingly, somewhat lower weights for the British pound, the euro, and the Japanese yen. The paper also proposes to make explicit the treatment of data gaps in the SDR valuation framework. Findings from a survey of SDR department participants and prescribed holders are used to follow up on operational issues raised in earlier valuation reviews. The new SDR valuation and interest rate baskets are proposed to come into effect on August 1, 2022 for a period of five years.
International Monetary Fund. Asia and Pacific Dept
Macao SAR’s recovery is expected to continue in 2022, but it will take several years before the economy returns to its pre-crisis level. Although strong fiscal support and the financial strength of Macao SAR’s casino groups cushioned employment and consumption, the sharp contraction in activity exposed Macao SAR’s vulnerability to external forces affecting the inflow of tourists. Short-term risks to the outlook include a re-intensification of the COVID-19 pandemic and an increase in Macao SAR’s financial sector stress. The heavy impact of the pandemic on Macao SAR’s growth highlights the need to diversify the economy beyond the gaming industry. The high exposure to climate-related shocks poses long-term concerns.
International Monetary Fund. Fiscal Affairs Dept., International Monetary Fund. Strategy, Policy, &, and Review Department
This Supplement presents an account of the extensive consultations and the results of various analyses that supported the development of “A Strategy for IMF Engagement on Social Spending.”
International Monetary Fund. Asia and Pacific Dept
This 2019 Article IV Consultation highlights that while more moderate than in the past, gaming and tourism revenue in Macao Special Administrative Region picked up as the economy returned to expansion since mid-2016. Progress with diversification towards mass-gaming and nongaming tourism, together with the continued China gaming monopoly, are expected to deliver growth of around 4 percent in the medium term. Risks are tilted to the downside, mainly emanating from Mainland China. Prudent macroeconomic policies and high reserves provide strong buffers against shocks. In addition to supporting diversification, fulfilling social needs, and maintaining macroeconomic stability, the policies priorities explained in the report will reduce external imbalances. The report also discusses that the current housing macroprudential stance and related fiscal measures appear broadly appropriate. A broader set of policies are advised to support housing affordability, where continued efforts to boost housing supply will be key.
International Monetary Fund. Asia and Pacific Dept
This 2016 Article IV Consultation highlights that the real output for Macao Special Administrative Region (SAR) is expected to contract for a third consecutive year in 2016. However, external demand has begun to recover with gaming revenues posting six consecutive months of positive annual growth. In 2017, a low base will help increase growth above 2 percent despite continued weak domestic demand. Further out, Macao SAR is well-positioned to record sustainable growth in the mid-single digits. In addition to its still highly valuable gaming monopoly within China, Macao SAR is an established tourist destination with significant geographic proximity to Mainland China. Macao SAR is now also investing aggressively in non-gaming tourism and financial services.
International Monetary Fund. Asia and Pacific Dept
This 2016 Article IV Consultation highlights China’s continued transition to sustainable growth, with progress on many fronts. Growth slowed to 6.9 percent in 2015 and is projected to moderate to 6.6 percent in 2016 owing to slower private investment and weak external demand. The economy is advancing on many dimensions of rebalancing, particularly switching from industry to services and from investment to consumption. But other aspects are lagging, such as strengthening state-owned enterprises and financial governance and containing rapid credit growth. The current account surplus is projected to decline to 2.5 percent of GDP in 2016 as imports increase and the services deficit widens with continued outbound tourism.
International Monetary Fund
This paper provides the basis for the quinquennial review of the method of valuation of the Special Drawing Right (SDR). The review considers the composition, size, and weighting of the SDR currency basket and the financial instruments used to determine the SDR interest rate. The analysis in this paper is guided by the informal discussion of Executive Directors in July on initial considerations for the review. In light of Directors’ preference, the two currency selection criteria for SDR inclusion are maintained. Since China continues to meet the export criterion, a key focus of this paper is on assessing whether the renminbi (RMB) could be determined to be a freely usable currency, which is the second criterion. The paper documents the rising international use and trading of the RMB since the 2010 SDR valuation review. A range of indicators suggests that use of the RMB in international transactions has risen substantially, albeit from a low base. The paper also finds that the RMB has become far more actively traded in foreign exchange markets, with sufficient depth to support operations of the size Fund members might undertake without an appreciable change in the exchange rate. Full Text also available in Chinese.