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International Monetary Fund
This paper provides a semi-annual review of the status of financing for the Fund’s concessional lending and debt relief to low-income countries (LICs). Since the last review, the Executive Board has approved comprehensive reforms of the Fund’s concessional lending instruments and financing framework. This update is based on data available at end-August and also takes into account the implications of these reforms.
Benn Eifert and Mr. Alan H. Gelb

This paper explores why increased aid flows require economic policymakers to confront some specific issues. Ensuring that increased aid promotes growth and reduces poverty is certainly the most important task. Empirical studies offer only mild support for aid-boosting growth. However, one study suggests that once one excludes the aid flows aimed at political and humanitarian goals, a positive net effect is observed for the remaining aid focused on economic objectives. This paper also outlines the roles to be played by development partners for making the aid being properly utilized for boosting growth.

Mr. James M. Boughton and Mr. Alex Mourmouras
IMF lending is generally conditional on specified policies and outcomes. These conditions usually are negotiated compromises between policies initially favored by the Fund and by the country's authorities. In some cases the authorities might be satisfied enough with the outcome to take responsibility for it ("own" it) even though it was not their original preference. In other cases, they might accept the outcome only to obtain financing, in which case weak commitment might lead to poor implementation. This paper reviews the theoretical basis for the importance of ownership, summarizes what is known about its empirical effects, and suggests a strategy for strengthening it.
International Monetary Fund
This report highlights the growth and macroeconomic policies in Malawi, and also analyzes the interaction between aid flows and macroeconomic stabilization policy. The paper reviews the country's recent trade reform program and summarizes other associated reforms and changes in the pattern of trade. It provides a survey of selected studies on the direct impact of HIV/AIDS on mortality and morbidity, measures of their possible effects on output, growth, and the fiscal position, and also a statistical appendix is provided for the country.