The process of following up on recommendations made by the Independent Evaluation Office (IEO) in their first report on “prolonged use” of IMF resources has been completed. Last autumn the Board asked a task force composed of IMF staff to make propositions of how to curtail long-term borrower dependency on the IMF monies. The task force presented their report to the Board in March and it should be public in mid-April.
Most of the recommendations for follow-up actions were welcomed by the Board. This includes more emphasis on ex-post assessment of what has worked in IMF programmes, what has not and what lessons to draw. These systematic assessments will be included in existing documents such as programme reviews, and documents linked to the IMF surveillance work. Internal guidelines on how to conduct these assessments – building on existing conditionality guidelines – will be provided to staff
The IMF Board agreed to define explicitly what prolonged use is, essentially along the lines of what the IEO was proposing. The question of the signalling role of the Fund to other donors, which can put pressure on the Fund to approve a programme or risk to see other donors withdraw, will be addressed in a forthcoming review of the Fund’s role in low-income countries later this year.
The second report of the IEO on capital account crises in Brazil, Korea, and Indonesia should be available in June. The third report on fiscal adjustment in IMF supported programmes will be available one month later. The IEO has started country visits as part of its next project, a review of PRSP and PRGF (see Bretton Woods Update 33). The IEO is seeking input on country cases, groups to meet in countries as well as general PRSP–PRGF issues. The IEO will be visiting Tanzania from March 31 to April 11; Guinea from April 14 to April 25, 2003; Mozambique from April 28 to May 9, 2003; and Nicaragua from June 2 to June 13, 2003.
Dates of visits to Tajikistan and Vietnam will be announced later.
Evaluation of PRSP and PRGF, Issues Paper/Terms of Reference, IMF
IEO ongoing projects, IMF