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April 2015

April 28, 2015

Job Offer! Resident Public Financial Management (PFM) Advisor (based in Belgrade, Serbia) (Job Number: 1500378)

  Job Offer


The Fiscal Affairs Department (FAD) of the IMF is seeking a highly qualified expert to act as Resident Public Financial Management (PFM) Advisor, based in Belgrade (Serbia). The Advisor’s position would be for an initial period of one year starting June 30, 2015, with the potential for further extension.

The resident advisor will work within the Ministry of Finance to:

• Strengthen the budget preparation process by developing macro-fiscal capacities; broaden budget preparation and analysis; improve medium-term baseline espenditure methodologies; develop medium-term policy costing processes; and integrate the top-down macro-fiscal forecasts and bottom-up expenditure baseline estimates.

• Build fiscal risk assessment capacity by building the analytical and reporting capabilities of a new fiscal risk unit; develop the capability to assess and report on PPP projects; guide collections and analysis of arrears data; and incorporate financial analysis of state owned enterprises into the budget process.

• Provide general assistance in PFM reforms by assisting the coordination and monitoring of the PFM reform program; assist in the migration of budget analysis and decision making processes to the program budget environment; and working with the regional PFM advisor to provide additional assistance as required.


Applicants should hold a university degree or equivalent qualification relevant to the above duties; possess excellent written and oral communication skills in English; have well developed analytical and research skills; be proficient in standard office IT applications (such as Word, PowerPoint, and Excel), and have experience in project management.

Applicants should also possess excellent interpersonal skills, be self-motivating and have an ability to work as part of a team, an aptitude for establishing cooperative relations and sharing technical knowledge with national authorities, as well as capacity to handle sensitive issues with discretion. A flexible and adaptable approach will also be essential in what is a fast moving and challenging work environment.

Preference will be given to candidates with at least ten years of relevant experience, including in a senior or advisory position within a ministry of finance, treasury, or related institution, who have managed or participated in the delivery of TA programs in the above PFM areas. Experience of working in countries with IMF supported programs and/or of working in the region would also be an advantage.

The IMF is committed to achieving a diverse staff, including gender, nationality, culture and educational background.

 Note: The posts on the IMF PFM Blog should not be reported as representing the views of the IMF. The views expressed are those of the authors and do not necessarily represent those of the IMF or IMF policy.

April 17, 2015

Public Ownership of Commercial Assets—A Quarter Century Phony War


Posted by Dag Detter and Stefan Fölster1

For more than a quarter of a century there has been a phony war raging between those in favour of public ownership of commercial assets and those against: privatisation versus nationalisation. This polarised and binary debate has missed the point. What matters is not so much who owns the assets but the quality of asset management

For any ownership mode, be it private, public, mutual or cooperative, there is a very wide range of alternative management models/styles and the choices made from those alternatives will have a major impact on the value the asset delivers. Huge portfolios remain in government hands, including not only corporations but also vast swathes of real estate. In some cases, privatisation will make sense. In many others, it may be neither desirable nor feasible. The good news is that there are ways to sweat assets that remain in public hands, generating a higher rate of return on them—if governments follow a few sensible rules. 

Continue reading "Public Ownership of Commercial Assets—A Quarter Century Phony War" »

April 09, 2015

Why Sovereign Wealth Funds Should Not Invest at Home


Posted by Andrew Bauer[1]

Developing, capital-scarce countries need domestic investment. Governments in countries such as Angola, Mongolia, and Timor-Leste must invest in education, health and public infrastructure if they hope to achieve middle- or high-income status. What’s more, mineral-rich countries have access to large (yet finite) sources of income that can be used to boost domestic investment and help overcome the poverty trap. On this nearly everyone can agree.

In response to this need for domestic investment, some commentators have recently suggested that there might be opportunities for these countries’ sovereign wealth funds (SWFs) to directly invest at home. Nearly every country with significant oil, gas or mineral exports operates a SWF. Already, governments in Angola, Azerbaijan, Iran, Nigeria and Russia, for example, use their SWFs to channel money to special domestic projects.

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