IMF and Switzerland Sign Agreement on Switzerland’s Contribution of US$10 million to Support Capacity Building in Africa, Asia, and South America

Press Release No. 10/192
May 11, 2010

Mr. Dominique Strauss-Kahn, Managing Director of the International Monetary Fund (IMF), and Ms. Doris Leuthard, President of the Swiss Confederation, today signed an agreement for a contribution of US$10 million by Switzerland to the IMF’s capacity building in Africa, Asia, and South America. After the signing ceremony, Mr. Strauss-Kahn issued the following statement:

“The IMF is pleased that Switzerland has decided to contribute US$10 million to building capacity in Africa, Asia, and South America. Switzerland is already one of the largest and most important providers of funding for the IMF’s capacity building program. This contribution agreement expands on our long-standing partnership, which has been highly successful in delivering results. We look forward to further deepening this partnership in the spirit of the Paris Declaration on Aid Effectiveness, thus reaping substantial synergies between our institutions to the benefit of recipient countries.”

This initiative will focus on Colombia, Egypt, Ghana, Indonesia, Peru, South Africa and Vietnam —all of them partner countries of Switzerland’s economic 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 earlier arrangement.

Background

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 funders by engaging with them on a broader, longer term, and more strategic basis. As a part of these efforts, the IMF and Switzerland have agreed to further strengthen their bilateral partnership for building capacity in selected partner countries of Switzerland’s development assistance in Africa, Asia, and South America. Further to Switzerland’s contributions under the bilateral partnership, Switzerland is also among the main contributors to selected Regional Technical Assistance Centers (RTACs) and Topical Trust Funds (TTFs).

In addition to the promotion of such bilateral partnerships with donors, the IMF is leveraging partnerships through RTACs. Adding to the six existing centers in Africa (three centers), the Caribbean, the Pacific and the Middle East, the Fund 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 TTFs will provide 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 additional 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 to support financial stability, and macroeconomic training for officials from African countries.

Useful links:

IMF Technical Assistance Factsheet:
http://www.imf.org/external/np/exr/facts/tech.htm

Paris Declaration on Aid Effectiveness:
http://www.oecd.org/dataoecd/11/41/34428351.pdf

Switzerland’s Participation in the IMF’s Trust Fund for Anti-Money Laundering and Combating the Financing of Terrorism:
http://www.imf.org/external/np/sec/pr/2009/pr09256.htm

Switzerland’s Support of Capacity Building in Sub-Saharan Africa Through the IMF Africa Regional Technical Assistance Centers (AFRITACs):
http://www.imf.org/external/np/sec/pr/2009/pr09453.htm

Switzerland’s Support of Capacity Building in Eastern Europe and Central Asia:
http://www.imf.org/external/np/sec/pr/2009/pr09477.htm



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