Economic stability of the Philippines was discussed in this report. Private investment remained low by regional standards, but there are tentative signs of a revival. These developments and favorable global conditions led to a surge in foreign exchange inflows and the external value of the peso. Inflation remained low because of an appreciating peso and prudent monetary policy. The authorities are encouraged to strengthen the tax effort. Legislation is being considered to restore the tax base by rationalizing fiscal incentives and adjusting excise taxes.
The staff report for the 2005 Article IV Consultation on the Philippines highlights managing short-term vulnerabilities and higher investment and growth. Power generation tariffs have been raised to substantially cut the losses of the National Power Corporation (NPC). A risk to the near-term outlook for the Philippine economy is that political events, such as possible constitutional change, serve to sideline economic reforms. Executive Directors agreed that rebalancing the composition of public expenditure, with reduced current outlays providing space for capital and social spending, should form an integral part of the fiscal consolidation.
This volume presents the proceedings of a conference, moderated by V.A. Jafarey, held in Lahore, Pakistan. papers given at the seminar addressed fiscal reform, monetary reform, privatization, and trade liberalization in the context of IMF-supported adjustment programs, with emphasis on the Pakistani experience.