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  • Nonwage Labor Costs and Benefits; Private Pensions x
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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.
International Monetary Fund. European Dept.
Recent economic developments. The program is broadly on track and the economy is growing strongly, supported by private consumption, investment, and exports. Fiscal performance remains sound, modernization of the tax administration has accelerated, and public debt has fallen sharply. Inflation remains below the mid-point of the NBS inflation band, while the NBS has kept rates on hold since April. Both credit and private sector wage growth are strengthening. Program performance. Quantitative targets (QTs) for end-September 2018 were met, apart from a minor deviation on the QT for domestic arrears. Most reform targets (RTs) have been implemented, albeit some with delays. Staff recommends completion of the first review under the Policy Coordination Instrument and modification of QTs for end-March and an establishment of end-September 2019 QTs.
International Monetary Fund
Threats to external stability in the pre-crisis period have now been reduced substantially and foreign non-debt creating flows have declined, sufficient to support external stability. The global economic downturn has raised challenges for evaluating the countries’ fiscal stance and fiscal policy focus should be lowering support to debt sustainability, private sector development, and the currency board stability. The two entity pension funds have been under increasing financial pressures. Putting the public pension systems on a sound footing will encompass a number of complementary steps.
International Monetary Fund
This Selected Issues and Statistical Appendix paper examines the scope for improving the effectiveness of fiscal policy of Serbia and Montenegro in containing the persistently large external imbalance. The paper discusses the causes of the current problems and presents preliminary results of the projected finances of the Fund for Employees (FE). It suggests options for reducing the cost of pension outlays, and provides preliminary estimates of the impact of the authorities’ recent reform package on the FE finances. The paper also provides a description of the main parameters of the Serbian pension system.