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December 2014

December 22, 2014

Sharing Success in Asia through PEMNA

PEMNA Group

Posted by Miki Matsuura, Shabih Ali Mohib, Catherine Yang[1]

For decades, development partners have provided assistance and advice on economic development to countries across the globe, resulting in many success stories. Yet, lessons from the successes are not always widely shared in a way that those coming up a path can benefit from others who went before. Both developed and developing countries thirst for knowledge from beyond their borders in search for better ways to reach their goals. They know that each country can help the other on the ladder of success.

 

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December 19, 2014

The Politics of Fiscal Squeeze: Book Review

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Posted by Richard Allen[1]

The politics of cutting government spending or raising taxes (or both) has dominated public debate in many countries in recent years. A new era of conflict has developed, with old political alignments being tested and new battles emerging over whose expectations are to be disappointed and who should be blamed for fiscal squeeze. Do parties who cut spending always get defeated in the following election? Are there “good practice” cases that every government should follow when it has to cut spending or raise taxes to balance its public finances? Such issues have typically been analyzed from an economic or financial perspective, with a particular focus on the recent financial crisis.

An interesting recent volume of papers focuses on the politics of fiscal squeeze and takes a longer view.[2] In this respect, the commonly held assumption that the financial crash of 2008 and the dramatic policy changes that followed were unique in the history of the world is mistaken. David Heald and Christopher Hood note, for example, that the fiscal travails of the early United States in the 1840s, or the Ottoman Empire after it defaulted on its loan repayments to foreign creditors in 1875, goes beyond anything witnessed in the Eurozone countries in the 2010s.

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December 18, 2014

PEFA NEWS FLASH!

NewsFlash - Feedback from stakeholders to the draft upgraded indicator set

PEFA

On August 7th 2014, the PEFA Secretariat invited comments from stakeholders on the draft of the upgraded PEFA indicators’ set. By the close of the public consultation period at the end of October, 74 written submissions had been received from a variety of stakeholders.

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December 10, 2014

Sovereign Debt Management Forum

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Posted by Greg Horman[1]

The World Bank hosted its biennial Sovereign Debt Management Forum in Washington, D.C. on December 3-4, 2014. Representatives of over 60 countries, officials of the World Bank and other international agencies, and participants from the private sector discussed the latest developments in public debt management and government borrowing.

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December 08, 2014

IPSAS: Guidelines And Realism Needed for Developing Countries

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Posted by Sylva Okolieaboh[1] and Delphine Moretti[2]

IPSAS adoption both in the OECD and the developing world has been discussed extensively in recent years, including on this blog. However, while many experts have expressed opinions on these standards, few practitioners have provided so far an account of the questions raised by the adoption of IPSAS in their countries, and feedback on the main issues faced in implementing these standards. The guidance note presented in this post, written by Sylva Okolieaboh, is of general relevance to countries wanting to introduce IPSAS. It sets out lessons learned from the ongoing experience in a number of African countries including Nigeria, and aims to provide true-to-life insights.

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December 02, 2014

Implementing an Effective TSA in Mali

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Posted by Racheeda Boukezia and Benoit Taiclet1

March 2012, Bamako, Mali:

Following insurgency and terrorism in the northern regions, civil strife and a garrison mutiny nearby Bamako, a military junta takes power, suspends constitutional order, thus triggering international retaliation. Soon after, the BCEAO -– the regional Central Bank for West African countries -- suspends transactions on behalf of the Malian government and, by doing so, chokes off the bulk of government spending. The Malian Treasury has no option but to reroute key payments through a number of commercial banks. By late 2012, not only is money scarce but it is also dispersed among more than 3,400 bank accounts. Although the transitional government laboriously succeeds in paying wages and making a few other mandatory payments, it is unable to optimize its use of cash and mobilize all idle funds. Is this the end of the would-be Treasury Single Account (TSA)?

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