Middle East and Central Asia > Kyrgyz Republic

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Mr. Charles M. Kahn, Mr. Manmohan Singh, and Jihad Alwazir
The rise of new and proposed monetary vehicles, including CBDC, stablecoins, payment service providers etc., are unprecedented. An important question for central banks is the extent to which these innovations upend the role of and implementation of monetary policy. The paper focuses on the interest rate channel and if digital money (especially CBDC) will change monetary policy and central bank operations. We argue that new policy instruments make sense only to the extent that there is limited substitutability between the various payment sectors. We analyze trends in currency-in-circulation, and how it may impact central bank’s seigniorage, monetary base, and transactional velocity of digital money if money demand declines. Liquidity outside the monetary base will also be important to understand.
Ms. Filiz D Unsal, Mr. Chris Papageorgiou, and Hendre Garbers
We provide a multidimensional characterization of monetary policy frameworks across three pillars: Independence and Accountability, Policy and Operational Strategy, and Communications (IAPOC). We construct the IAPOC index by analyzing central banks’ laws and websites for 50 advanced economies, emerging markets, and low-income developing countries, from 2007 to 2018. Due to its scope and granularity, our index provides a holistic view of monetary policy frameworks which goes beyond existing measures of transparency or independence, as well as monetary policy or exchange rate regime classifications. Comparing the IAPOC index across countries and over time, we find that monetary policymaking is varied, fast-changing, and eclectic across the Policy and Operational Strategy and Communications pillars, especially in emerging markets and low-income developing countries.
Mr. Tigran Poghosyan
This paper analyzes determinants and consequences of FX interventions in the Kyrgyz Republic. Most of the literature on the topic focuses on advanced and emerging economies and this paper provides new evidence from a low-income country. We find that FX interventions take place in response to movements in the exchange rate and its volatility. There is also evidence of “leaning against the wind”, which is more pronounced for relatively larger FX sales and purchases. The “leaning against the wind” is asymmetric toward FX sales and largely reflects leaning against depreciation of domestic currency. We document a varying degree of de-facto exchange rate stability despite the de-jure floating exchange rate regime. During most of the sample, the exchange rate management index was relatively low in line with the floating exchange rate regime, with the exception of the period from 2018 Q4 until the COVID-19 shock, during which the exchange rate management index was relatively high.
Iulia Ruxandra Teodoru and Asel Toktonalieva
This paper estimates the neutral interest rate in the Kyrgyz Republic using a range of methodologies. Results indicate that the real neutral rate is about 4 percent based on an average of models and 3.7 percent based on a Quarterly Projection Model. This is higher than in many emerging markets and is likely explained by higher public debt and an elevated risk premium, low creditor rights and contractual enforcement, and low domestic savings. The use of an estimate of the neutral interest rate provides useful guidance to monetary policy and enhances transparency and independence of the central bank. Our estimate provides a quantitative benchmark for the monetary policy stance in the context of a central bank that is building analytical capacity, integrating additional insights in its decision-making process, and working to improve its communication. Strengthening the monetary transmission mechanism will be critical to enhance the effectiveness of monetary policy, including by allowing more exchange rate flexibility to support the transition to a full-fledged inflation targeting regime, and reducing excess liquidity to enhance the credit channel, reducing dollarization and high interest rate spreads that adversely affect the transmission of the policy rate to the economy.
International Monetary Fund
The safeguards policy aims to mitigate the potential risks of misuse of resources, including Fund resources, and misreporting of program monetary data. The policy, introduced in 2000, is an integral part of the Fund’s financing policies and complements other safeguards, such as program design, conditionality, and access limits. Safeguards assessments of central banks of the borrowing member are required for almost all forms of Fund financing, and are followed by a period of monitoring for as long as Fund credit is outstanding.
International Monetary Fund
This paper examines the implications of elevated global food prices for inflation in select Central Asian economies - Kazakhstan, the Kyrgyz Republic, Tajikistan, and Uzbekistan. The findings suggest that global food inflation has significant short-run effects that build over time. Inflation outcomes simulated under alternative global wheat price assumptions underscore these vulnerabilities, and suggest that sustained administrative measures are unlikely to prove effective. In line with structural economic features, the interest rate channel of monetary policy is found to be limited, arguing for a broad policy strategy to control more expansive inflationary pressures. Looking ahead, measures to enhance supply responses, deepen domestic financial markets, develop adequate social safety nets, and increase central bank independence are warranted.
Mr. Bernard J Laurens


The most salient trend in monetary policy over the past two decades has been increasing reliance on money market operations, which reflects the belief that allowing market forces to allocate financial resources brings about increased economic efficiency and growth. However, small economies and countries with undeveloped financial markets have found that a lack of competition in their financial markets complicates their efforts to rely on money market operations, at times forcing them to rely instead on direct instruments or moral suasion. In some larger countries, the shift toward a reliance on money market operations has been gradual and, at times, fraught with difficulty. This report draws on a variety of country experiences to analyze the reasons for such difficulties and proposes a stylized sequencing of reforms that enables countries to tailor the introduction of money market operations to their particular circumstances.

Mr. Gonzalo C Pastor Campos and Ms. Tatiana Damjanovic
This paper reviews the economic conditions in central Asia at the time of the Russian financial crisis of August 1998; the channels by which the crisis was transmitted to the central Asian region; and the policy responses. The paper concludes that, while real exchange rates of central Asian national currencies vis-à-vis the Russian ruble have returned to their pre-crisis levels following the nominal devaluations that ensued, other indicators of external competitiveness, such as unit labor cost indices, suggest the need for further surveillance in this area. Also, it is not yet clear if full exchange rate flexibility has been established in central Asia despite the protracted and costly exits from the nominal exchange rates in place at the time of the crisis. Finally, the debt-to-GDP ratios in central Asia, which grew rapidly between 1998 and 1999 in the context of large exchange rate adjustments, remain a challenge for the Tajik and Kyrgyz authorities, in particular.
Mr. Dong He
This paper discusses operational aspects of official emergency liquidity support to individual institutions under stress. It argues that properly designed lending procedures, clearly laid-out authority and accountability, as well as disclosures rules, will promote financial stability, reduce moral hazard, and protect the lender of last resort from undue political pressure. Although there may well be good reasons to maintain ambiguity over the conditions for assistance, there are important advantages for developing, and for transition economies to follow a rule-based approach by setting out ex ante the necessary conditions for support, while maintaining that meeting such conditions is not sufficient for receiving support.
Mr. Robert T Price, Mr. Malcolm D. Knight, and Mr. Arne B. Petersen


In 1991, the Baltics, Russia and other countries of the former Soviet Union set out on the road to establishing market economies by lieberalizing prices, dismantling the instruments of central planning, and initiating a process of fundamental structural reforms. Since then these 15 countries have taken substantial steps toward achieving macroeconomic stabilization, and are well advanced in many areas of the transformation to market economies. In particular, considerable progress has been made in developing market-oriented financial structures. Edited by Malcolm Knight, Arne B. Petersen, and Robert T. Price, this volume focuses more narrowly on progress achieved in the area of market-oriented central bank and financial system reforms.