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François Gurtner

4 July 2006
OCCASIONAL PAPER SERIES - No. 48
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Abstract
This paper - based on a report by a Task Force established by the International Relations Committee (IRC) of the European System of Central Banks (ESCB) - reviews macroeconomic and financial stability challenges for acceding (Bulgaria and Romania) and candidate countries (Croatia and Turkey). In an environment characterised by strong growth and capital inflows, the main macroeconomic challenges relate to the recent pick-up of inflation and the large and widening current account deficits. Moreover, rapid credit growth has been a recent feature of financial development in all countries and thus constitutes the main financial stability challenge. In general, monetary authorities have responded to these challenges by tightening monetary conditions and prudential standards, with concrete measures also reflecting the different monetary and exchange rate regimes in the region. The paper also highlights four specific features of fiancial development in the countries under review, namely the dominance of banks in financial intermediation, the strong participation of foreign-owned banks, the widespread use of foreign currencies and the strengthening of supervisory frameworks.
JEL Code
E65 : Macroeconomics and Monetary Economics→Macroeconomic Policy, Macroeconomic Aspects of Public Finance, and General Outlook→Studies of Particular Policy Episodes
G21 : Financial Economics→Financial Institutions and Services→Banks, Depository Institutions, Micro Finance Institutions, Mortgages
G38 : Financial Economics→Corporate Finance and Governance→Government Policy and Regulation
O16 : Economic Development, Technological Change, and Growth→Economic Development→Financial Markets, Saving and Capital Investment, Corporate Finance and Governance
P27 : Economic Systems→Socialist Systems and Transitional Economies→Performance and Prospects
21 August 2007
OCCASIONAL PAPER SERIES - No. 69
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Abstract
Southern and eastern Mediterranean countries have many fiscal challenges in common with other emerging market and mature economies concerning deficit and debt reduction and the maintenance of fiscal discipline. However, most countries in the region also face some specific fiscal issues, such as relatively high public debt, dependence on some form or another of donor dependence or concessional financing, high budgetary exposure to fluctuations in hydrocarbon prices, high defence expenditure and weak tax bases. Against this background, this paper reviews fiscal developments and fiscal policy issues in the ten countries that are participants or observers in the EU's Barcelona process. The main focus is on the implications of these developments and issues for macroeconomic stability, given that countries in the region have made considerable progress in terms of macroeconomic stabilisation over the last two decades, which is reflected in particular in lower inflation rates. The analysis distinguishes between non-oil-producing and oil-producing countries in the region, as they exhibit different fiscal features and are confronted with different challenges. In the case of non-oil-producing countries, the key challenges stem from high deficits and debt levels, including implicit and contingent liabilities, notwithstanding some progress in fiscal consolidation in most of these countries over the last years. In the case of oil-producing countries, whose fiscal situation has significantly improved in recent years in the wake of high oil prices, the key challenges for fiscal management stem from the heavy reliance on an exhaustible source of revenues and a large exposure to fluctuations in international hydrocarbon prices. A shock originating from - or being transmitted via and exacerbated by - the fiscal sector appears to be the single most important macroeconomic risk in many countries.
25 June 2009
OCCASIONAL PAPER SERIES - No. 104
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Abstract
Fiscal policy choices have a particularly significant impact on economic performance in oil-exporting countries, owing to the importance of the oil sector in the economy and the fact that in most countries oil revenues accrue to the government. At the same time, fiscal policy in oil-centred economies is facing specific challenges, both in the long run, as regards intergenerational equity and fiscal sustainability, and in the short run, as regards macroeconomic stabilisation and fiscal planning. Institutional responses to the specific fiscal challenges in oil-exporting countries involve conservative oil price assumptions in the budget, the establishment of oil stabilisation and savings funds and fiscal rules. Fiscal policy in most oil-exporting countries has been expansionary over the past years in the wake of high oil prices. Fiscal expansion has added to inflationary pressure, and monetary policy has been constrained in tackling inflation as a result of prevailing exchange rate regimes. While, in this context, fiscal policy is the major tool for macroeconomic stabilisation, it has faced competing objectives and considerations. Cyclical considerations would have warranted fiscal restraint, but, in times of high oil prices, pressures to increase public spending have been mounting. Such pressures stem from primarily distribution-related considerations, development-related spending needs (e.g. in the areas of physical and social infrastructure) and international considerations in the context of, for example, global imbalances. The sharp fall in oil prices since mid-2008 has brought to the fore a different question - whether oil exporters can sustain spending levels reached in previous years.
JEL Code
E62 : Macroeconomics and Monetary Economics→Macroeconomic Policy, Macroeconomic Aspects of Public Finance, and General Outlook→Fiscal Policy
E63 : Macroeconomics and Monetary Economics→Macroeconomic Policy, Macroeconomic Aspects of Public Finance, and General Outlook→Comparative or Joint Analysis of Fiscal and Monetary Policy, Stabilization, Treasury Policy
H30 : Public Economics→Fiscal Policies and Behavior of Economic Agents→General
H60 : Public Economics→National Budget, Deficit, and Debt→General
Q32 : Agricultural and Natural Resource Economics, Environmental and Ecological Economics→Nonrenewable Resources and Conservation→Exhaustible Resources and Economic Development
Q38 : Agricultural and Natural Resource Economics, Environmental and Ecological Economics→Nonrenewable Resources and Conservation→Government Policy
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