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Luc Stevens

16 November 2022
Climate change poses three specific but interrelated policy challenges: climate change mitigation, climate change adaptation (which includes building up resilience) and managing transition risks. The International Monetary Fund (IMF) is a multilateral institution with global reach and near-universal membership. Therefore, along with other international organisations, it has an important role to play in addressing the policy challenges posed by climate change. This paper discusses the contribution the IMF makes and can make in its three areas of competence: surveillance, lending and technical assistance. The paper concludes that the IMF has significantly increased its engagement in climate change matters in recent years but should further intensify its efforts in ways that are fully consistent with its mandate.
JEL Code
F3 : International Economics→International Finance
F33 : International Economics→International Finance→International Monetary Arrangements and Institutions
F34 : International Economics→International Finance→International Lending and Debt Problems
O19 : Economic Development, Technological Change, and Growth→Economic Development→International Linkages to Development, Role of International Organizations
Q5 : Agricultural and Natural Resource Economics, Environmental and Ecological Economics→Environmental Economics
Q48 : Agricultural and Natural Resource Economics, Environmental and Ecological Economics→Energy→Government Policy
Q54 : Agricultural and Natural Resource Economics, Environmental and Ecological Economics→Environmental Economics→Climate, Natural Disasters, Global Warming
16 October 2019
Conditionality is at the very heart of IMF lending and has been the subject of intense debates ever since the Fund’s inception. Its success is of crucial importance not only for countries’ chances of achieving the goals of IMF lending programmes, but also for the credibility of the Fund as a trusted adviser. This report provides information and a set of facts on the IMF arrangements approved after the global financial crisis, with a focus on ex post conditionality and on arrangements primarily financed through the General Resources Account (GRA). The analysis shows that between 2008 and 2018, the characteristics of IMF programmes evolved with the macroeconomic context; in particular, a tendency towards more structural conditionality and longer programme implementation horizons has emerged. In the aftermath of an IMF programme, all relevant macroeconomic variables tend to improve compared with the pre-programme period; in particular, external and fiscal positions improve considerably and growth typically rebounds, inflation declines and net private capital inflows stabilise or recover slightly. However, the improvement has generally fallen short of expectations, especially in terms of GDP growth and debt reduction. One area in which the effectiveness of IMF programmes has proven less than satisfactory is with serial borrowers, i.e. countries that fail to graduate from IMF financial assistance in due course. This highlights the importance of further analysing the factors behind the success of IMF programmes and points, inter alia, to the need to design and sequence the structural conditions attached to Fund loans more effectively
JEL Code
F3 : International Economics→International Finance
F5 : International Economics→International Relations, National Security, and International Political Economy