Press Release: IMF and Switzerland Sign Agreement on Switzerland’s Contribution of US$10 million to Support Capacity Building in Eastern Europe and Central Asia

December 22, 2009

Press Release No. 09/477
December 22, 2009

Mr. Murilo Portugal, Deputy Managing Director of the International Monetary Fund (IMF), and Ambassador Beatrice Maser Mallor, Head of Economic Cooperation and Development of the State Secretariat for Economic Affairs (SECO), have signed an agreement for a contribution of US$10 million by Switzerland to the IMF’s capacity building in Eastern Europe and Central Asia.

Following the signing, Mr. Portugal issued the following statement:

“The IMF is pleased that Switzerland has decided to contribute US$10 million to building capacity in Eastern Europe and Central Asia. Switzerland is one of the largest and most important donors to the IMF’s capacity building program. Our long standing partnership in the Central Asia region has been very successful. We believe that our strong partnership will create substantial synergies for both institutions and, most importantly, will deliver results for recipient countries.”

“This initiative will focus on Albania, Azerbaijan, Bosnia and Herzegovina, Kosovo, Kyrgyz Republic, Macedonia, Serbia, Tajikistan, Turkmenistan, Ukraine, and Uzbekistan—all of them partner countries of SECO’s development assistance—and will assist these countries in building capacity in Public Finance Management, Revenue Policy and Administration, Macroeconomic Analysis and Management, Financial Market Development, Central Banking, Pension Systems, and Anti-Money Laundering and Combating the Financing of Terrorism. The initiative expands on a successful arrangement for Central Asia.”

Background Information

Demand for the IMF’s technical assistance is rising in light of the current global economic and financial crisis as countries work on strengthening their institutions. To meet this rising demand as well as to better coordinate assistance delivery, the Fund is strengthening its partnerships with donors by engaging with them on a broader, longer-term, and more strategic basis. As a part of these efforts, IMF and Switzerland have agreed to further strengthen their bilateral partnership for building capacity in selected partner countries of SECO’s development assistance in Eastern Europe and Central Asia.

In addition to the promotion of such bilateral partnerships with donors, the IMF recently opened the Central America, Panama, and the Dominican Republic Regional Technical Assistance Center (see Press Release No. 09/236) and intends to open three additional Regional Technical Assistance Centers (RTACs) in Central Asia, and Southern and Western Africa.

Complementing the regional perspective of the RTACs, a menu of Topical Trust Funds (TTFs) will provide a global coverage and a specialized topical scope. The IMF launched its first TTF on Anti-Money Laundering and Combating the Financing of Terrorism in May 2009 (see Press Release No. 09/108). The roll-out of other TTFs is planned over the next year in the areas of natural resource management, tax policy and administration, public financial management, development of sustainable debt strategies, compilation of statistics relevant to financial stability, and macroeconomic training for officials from African countries.

Further to Switzerland’s contribution under the bilateral partnership, Switzerland is also among the main contributors to selected RTACs and TTFs.

Useful links:

IMF Technical Assistance Factsheet:

Paris Declaration on Aid Effectiveness:

Switzerland’s Participation in the IMF’s Trust Fund for Anti-Money Laundering and Combating the Financing of Terrorism:

Switzerland’s Support of Capacity Building in Sub-Saharan Africa Through the IMF Africa Regional Technical Assistance Centers (AFRITACs):


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