Mr. Kangni R Kpodar, Mr. Montfort Mlachila, Mr. Saad N Quayyum, and Vigninou Gammadigbe
This paper provides an early assessment of the dynamics and drivers of remittances during the COVID-19 pandemic, using a newly compiled monthly remittance dataset for a sample of 52 countries, of which 16 countries with bilateral remittance data. The paper documents a strong resilience in remittance flows, notwithstanding an unprecedent global recession triggered by the pandemic. Using the local projection approach to estimate the impulse response functions of remittance flows during Jan 2020-Dec 2020, the paper provides evidence that: (i) remittances responded positively to COVID-19 infection rates in migrant home countries, underscoring its role as an important automatic stabilizer; (ii) stricter containment measures have the unintended consequence of dampening remittances; and (iii) a shift from informal to formal remittance channels due to travel restrictions appears to have also played a role in the surge in formal remittances. Lastly, the size of the fiscal stimulus in host countries is positively associated with remittances as the fiscal response cushions the economic impact of the pandemic.
Mr. Carlos Sanchez-Munoz, Mr. Paul A Austin, Alicia Hierro, and Ms. Tamara Razin
The 2019 Annual Report of the IMF Committee on Balance of Payments Statistics (the Committee) provides an overview of recent trends in global balance of payments and international investment position statistics, summarizes the Committee’s work during 2019, and presents the work program of the Committee in the coming year.
As part of the IMF-South Asia Regional Training and Technical Assistance Center (SARTTAC) work program, a technical assistance (TA) mission on external sector statistics (ESS) was conducted during April 2–13, 2018. The mission assisted the Royal Monetary Authority (RMA) in compiling and disseminating external debt statistics (EDS) consistent with the international investment position (IIP), reviewed the compilation method of direct investment statistics, and assessed the coverage of external flows related to hydropower projects.
This paper attempts to assess the impact of the oil shock on South Asian economies, including Sri Lanka, as well as policy responses to deal with the shock, and the real income loss for low-income households if fuel subsidies were fully removed. The most important impact has been on the balance of payments followed by the results of poverty and social impact analysis (PSIA) conducted for Sri Lanka. Finally, the paper explores to what extent Sri Lanka’s large receipts of worker remittances serve as a hedge against shocks.
International Monetary Fund. Secretary's Department
The speeches made by officials attending the IMF–World Bank Annual Meetings are published in this volume, along with the press communiqués issued by the International Monetary and Financial Committee and the Development Committee at the conclusion of the meetings.