Who We Are

The IMF supports capacity development through a dedicated staff that comes from nearly 150 countries. Leveraging their professional experience garnered from national and international agencies, academia and the private sector, IMF staff share their collective experiences with member countries on what policies work, why they unleash growth and how best to implement them.

What We Do

Strengthening the capacity of economic institutions, such as central banks and finance ministries, results in more effective policies that lead to greater economic stability and growth.

That is why for more than 50 years, the IMF has worked with governments around the world to strengthen these institutions by providing technical assistance and training on critical economic issues. This helps countries develop the foundation they need to achieve their growth and development goals.

Capacity development is a core mandate of the IMF and accounts for nearly a third of its budget. It includes:

  • Advising finance ministries on how to raise revenue enables governments to provide better public services such as schools, roads and hospitals
  • Helping countries align their legal and governance frameworks to international standards enables countries to combat corruption, money laundering and terrorism financing
  • Improving countries’ macroeconomic and financial data provides them a more accurate read on their economy and sends a message of transparency, helping attract greater investments
  • Training policymakers on policies such as progressive taxation, financial inclusion and gender budgeting helps countries frame policies that reduce inequality

The IMF’s capacity development efforts are also focused on helping member countries tackle development priorities — such as income inequality, corruption, climate change and gender inequality — helping them make progress toward the Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs).

How We Work

Initiated at the request of member countries, the IMF works with countries on capacity development efforts via:

In FY 2018 (April 2017 – May 2018), low-income developing countries received about half of all IMF technical advice. Emerging market and middle‑income economies received just over half of IMF policy‑oriented training.

Bilateral and multilateral partners play a vital role in enabling the IMF’s knowledge sharing work around the world. They presently finance about one half of the IMF’s capacity development effort.

How IMF Capacity Development Benefits Countries

It helps raise public revenues so governments can provide better services for their people — such as schools, roads and hospitals.

For instance: The IMF’s work in Colombia helped build modern tax structures that created more jobs in the formal sector, which meant higher wages and more job security. This helped reduce income inequality and raised public revenues for greater investments in healthcare and infrastructure.

It helps create a stable economic and monetary ecosystem — e.g. efficient tax structures, sustainable debt, reliable data, sound regulatory framework — which enables transparency, stimulates private sector development and leads to greater and more equitable economic growth.

For instance: When Kosovo wanted to rebuild its post-conflict economy, it worked with the IMF to set up its central banking operations such as payment systems. IMF’s efforts paved the way for establishment of commercial banks that provided basic financial services to people and stimulated private sector development.

See additional examples of how this effort has benefited countries around the world.