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International Monetary Fund. Fiscal Affairs Dept. and International Monetary Fund. Strategy, Policy, & Review Department
The International Monetary Fund’s engagement on social safety net (SSN) issues is likely to expand as member countries respond to growing challenges in the economic and fiscal landscape. SSNs play a crucial role in protecting households from poverty, promoting inclusive growth, and maintaining social stability. This technical note discusses (1) the different channels through which SSN spending may become macro-critical, (2) how to assess the importance of these channels, and (3) the types of policy responses that are appropriate and the trade-offs involved in choosing among them. To facilitate a more comprehensive assessment of SSN spending, the paper also examines the complementary role of labor market programs (for example, unemployment benefits and active labor market programs). The paper emphasizes the importance of early engagement and coordination with development partners with expertise on social safety nets and with different stakeholders when formulating policy advice.
International Monetary Fund. Fiscal Affairs Dept. and International Monetary Fund. Strategy, Policy, & Review Department
The International Monetary Fund (IMF) is increasingly involved in offering policy advice on public pension issues to member countries. Public pension spending is important from both fiscal and welfare perspectives. Pension policy and its reforms can have significant fiscal and distribution implications, can influence labor supply and labor demand decisions, and may impact consumption and savings behavior. This technical note provides guidance on assessing public pension systems’ macrocriticality, i.e., sustainability, adequacy, and efficiency; it also discusses the issues and policy trade-offs to be considered when designing responses aiming to address these dimensions of the pension system. The paper emphasizes the importance of taking a long-term, comprehensive perspective when evaluating public pension spending and providing policy advice. Where feasible, reforms should be gradual and transparent to allow individuals ample time to adjust their work and savings decisions and to facilitate consumption smoothing over their lifecycle to avoid poverty in old age. It is also important to ensure that pension systems’ design and reforms do not lead to undesirable impacts in other policy areas including general tax compliance, health insurance coverage, labor force participation among older workers, or labor market informality. The paper emphasizes the importance country-specific social and economic objectives and constraints, as well as political economy realities – factors that can determine whether a pension reform is a success or failure.
Ian W.H. Parry, Mr. Peter Dohlman, Mr. Cory Hillier, Mr. Martin D Kaufman, Florian Misch, Mr. James Roaf, Mr. Christophe J Waerzeggers, and Miss Kyung Kwak
This Climate Note discusses the rationale, design, and impacts of border carbon adjustments (BCAs), charges on embodied carbon in imports potentially matched by rebates for embodied carbon in exports. Large disparities in carbon pricing between countries is raising concerns about competitiveness and emissions leakage, and BCAs are a potentially effective instrument for addressing such concerns. Design details are critical, however. For example, limiting coverage of the BCA to energy-intensive, trade-exposed industries facilitates administration, and initially benchmarking BCAs on domestic emissions intensities would help ease the transition for emissions-intensive trading partners. It is also important to consider how to apply BCAs across countries with different approaches to emissions mitigation. BCAs are challenging because they pose legal risks and may be at odds with the differentiated responsibilities of developing countries. Furthermore, BCAs provide only modest incentives for other large emitting countries to scale carbon pricing—an international carbon price floor would be far more effective in this regard.
Mr. Emre Balibek, Ian Storkey, and Hakan Yavuz
Cash and debt management operations are part of the “transactional” functions of public financial management. It is critical that these functions are resilient to external disruptions, ranging from information and communication technology (ICT) system outages to natural disasters. This technical manual aims to provide guidance on the steps that government cash and debt management units can follow to develop and implement a practical business continuity plan that economizes the resources used. It also discusses the evolving nature of business disruption risks faced by cash and debt management over the last decade, including the COVID-19 pandemic, as well as risk mitigation solutions that have emerged.
Mr. Zamid Aligishiev, Mr. Giovanni Melina, and Luis-Felipe Zanna
This note is a user’s manual for the DIGNAR-19 toolkit, an application aimed at facilitating the use of the DIGNAR-19 model by economists with no to little knowledge of Matlab and Dynare via a user-friendly Excel-based interface. he toolkit comprises three tools—the simulation tool, the graphing tool, and the realism tool—that translate the contents of an Excel input file into instructions for Matlab/Dynare programs. These programs are executed behind the scenes. Outputs are saved in a separate Excel file and can also be visualized in customizable charts.
International Monetary Fund

Abstract

This report overviews countries fiscal actions in response to COVID-19 and discusses how governments policies should adapt to get ahead of the pandemic and set the stage for a greener, fairer, and more durable recovery. Global vaccination should be scaled up as it can save lives and will eventually pay for itself with stronger employment and economic activity. Until the pandemic is brought under control globally, fiscal policies must remain flexible and supportive, while keeping debt at a manageable level over the long term. Governments also need to adopt comprehensive policies, embedded in medium-term frameworks, to tackle inequalities—especially in access to basic public services—that were exacerbated by the COVID-19 pandemic and may cause income gaps to persist. Investing in education, healthcare and early childhood development and strengthening social safety nets financed through improved tax capacity and higher progressivity, can strengthen lifetime opportunities, improve trust, and contribute to more social cohesion.

Mr. Jack Calder

Abstract

This handbook is one of the first of its kind to focus attention on effectively administering revenues from extractive industries. It provides policymakers and officials in developing and emerging market economies with practical guidelines to establish a robust legal framework, organization, and procedures for administering revenue from these industries. It discusses transparency and how to promote it in the face of increasing demands for clarity and how developing countries can strengthen their managerial and technical capacity to administer these revenues.