Asia and Pacific > Papua New Guinea

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International Monetary Fund. Asia and Pacific Dept
The COVID-19 pandemic erupted just as the government was beginning to implement wide-ranging fiscal, foreign exchange, structural, and governance measures under a Staff-Monitored Program (SMP). The authorities have reaffirmed their commitment to these reforms, but the impact of the crisis is generating balance of payments and fiscal gaps of 4 and 3 percent of GDP, respectively. In the near term, risks are primarily on the downside, especially if there is a widespread local outbreak of the virus. Papua New Guinea’s longer-term outlook remains positive, largely reflecting the likelihood of major resource sector projects.
International Monetary Fund. Asia and Pacific Dept
This paper presents Papua New Guinea’s (PNG) 2019 Article IV Consultation and Request for Staff Monitored Program. The economy is estimated to have rebounded in 2019 following the contraction triggered by the large earthquake in 2018. Inflation is projected to fall in 2019 but to pick up temporarily thereafter. The staff report reflects discussions with the PNG authorities in October 28–November 9, 2019 and is based on the information available as of November 21, 2019. It focuses on PNG near- and medium-term challenges and policy priorities and was prepared before coronavirus disease 2019 became a global pandemic and resulted in unprecedented strains in global trade, commodity and financial markets. It, therefore, does not reflect the implications of these developments and related policy priorities. The outbreak has greatly amplified uncertainty and downside risks around the outlook. Staff is closely monitoring the situation and will continue to work on assessing its impact and the related policy response in PNG and globally.
International Monetary Fund. African Dept.
This paper discusses Cote d’Ivoire’s Sixth Review Under the Arrangement of the Extended Credit Facility and the Extended Arrangement Under the Extended Fund Facility, and Request for Extension and Augmentation of Access. Côte d’Ivoire has been pursuing a development-oriented policy agenda, and the IMF-supported program in place since 2016 has supported that focus, paving the way for the private sector to become the main driver of growth. The performance under the program has been strong. The medium-term growth prospects remain robust, predicated on continuing prudent macroeconomic policy, furthering financial sector reforms and sustaining structural reforms to bolster private sector-led inclusive growth. Côte d’Ivoire’s reform efforts have resulted in improvements in its business climate in recent years. It will be imperative to continue the reform agenda to further stimulate private sector activity and support inclusive growth, including by improving the energy sector, human capital and financial inclusion, accelerating digitalization, enhancing trade connectivity and governance, expanding the coverage of social safety nets, and reinforcing the statistical apparatus to help better inform economic policy.
Ryota Nakatani
A big challenge for the economic development of small island countries is dealing with external shocks. The Pacific Islands are vulnerable to natural disasters, climate change, commodity price changes, and uncertain donor grants. The question that arises is how should small developing countries formulate a fiscal policy to achieve economic stability and fiscal sustainability when prone to various shocks? We study how natural disasters affect long-term debt dynamics and propose fiscal policy rules that could help insulate the economy from such unexpected shocks. We propose fiscal rules to address these shocks and uncertainties using the example of Papua New Guinea. Our study finds the advantages of expenditure rules, especially a recurrent expenditure rule based on non-resource and non-grant revenue, interdependently determined by government debt and budget balance targets with expected disaster shocks. This paper contributes to the literature and policy dialogue by theoretically analyzing the impact of natural disasters on debt sustainability and proposing fiscal rules against natural disasters and climate changes. Our fiscal policy framework is practically applicable for many developing countries facing increasing frequency and impact of natural disasters and climate change. Our rules-based fiscal framework is crucial for sustainable and countercyclical macroeconomic policies to build resilience against devastating natural hazards.
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 2016 Article IV Consultation highlights that Papua New Guinea is facing headwinds stemming from low commodity prices and is recovering from a major drought; these factors have weighed on economic growth, weakened the external position, and created fiscal challenges. Foreign exchange (FX) remains in short supply, but inflows have recently picked up somewhat. Near-term risks to the outlook are tilted to the downside, as fiscal retrenchment may have a greater impact on the economy than currently expected and the limited availability of FX continues to constrain imports and economic activity. A further drop in commodity prices would weaken the external and fiscal positions.
Hoe Ee Khor, Mr. Roger P. Kronenberg, and Ms. Patrizia Tumbarello

Abstract

Pacific island countries face unique challenges to realizing their growth potential and raising living standards. This book discusses ongoing challenges facing Pacific island countries and policy options to address them. Regional cooperation and solutions tailored to their unique challenges, as well as further integration with the Asia and Pacific region will each play a role. With concerted efforts, Pacific island countries can boost potential growth, increase resilience, and improve the welfare of their citizens.

Ms. Elva Bova, Mr. Paulo A Medas, and Mr. Tigran Poghosyan
Resource-rich countries face large and persistent shocks, especially coming from volatile commodity prices. Given the severity of the shocks, it would be expected that these countries adopt countercyclical fiscal policies to help shield the domestic economy. Taking advantage of a new dataset covering 48 non-renewable commodity exporters for the period 1970-2014, we investigate whether fiscal policy does indeed play a stabilizing role. Our analysis shows that fiscal policy tends to have a procyclical bias (mainly via expenditures) and, contrary to others, we do not find evidence that this bias has declined in recent years. Adoption of fiscal rules does not seem to reduce procyclicality in a significant way, but the quality of political institutions does matter. Finally, non-commodity revenues tend to respond only to persistent changes in commodity prices.