Iraq Resident Representative Site
Resident Representative Office in Iraq
This web page presents information about the work of the IMF in Iraq, including the activities of the IMF Resident Representative Office. Additional information can be found on the Iraq and IMF country page, including IMF reports and Executive Board documents that deal with Iraq.
News — Highlights
Containing inflation has turned out to be one of the most challenging aspects of economic management in Iraq. This paper posits that conventional as well as unconventional factors explain inflation dynamics in the recent past.
Global Imbalances, Africa's Improved Debt Outlook, Nigerian Reform, Burkina Faso's Cotton Crisis, Ghana and Inflation Targeting, Iraq's Progress, Egypt's Reforms Spur Growth, Asian Trade, Baltics' High Growth Rate, News Briefs
Iraq and the IMF
Op ED by Masood Ahmed, Director of the Middle East and Central Asia Department : A tale of two shocks in Iraq
November 17, 2014
Improving the efficiency of public infrastructure investment across many oil exporters in the Middle East and North Africa and the Caucasus and Central Asia is now more important than ever, a new IMF study says.
Regional Economic Outlook Update: Middle East & Central Asia
A modest recovery is expected to continue in the MENAP despite a slump in oil prices, raging regional conflicts, and lingering uncertainty of the post-Arab Spring transitions.
- Despite a sharp decline in oil prices, growth in the oil-exporting countries is projected to remain steady at 2.4 percent in 2015, with inflation subdued. Faced with large oil revenue losses, most countries are expected to use accumulated financial buffers and available financing to cushion some of the impact on growth while gradually slowing their fiscal spending, so that they can share the now reduced oil wealth equitably with future generations and rebuild buffers for dealing with oil price volatility. Specific policy announcements would help reduce uncertainty about how medium-term fiscal consolidation plans will be carried out.
- In the oil-importing countries, growth is expected to strengthen from 3 percent in 2014 to 4 percent in 2015, supported by a gradual recovery in the euro area, improved domestic confidence, and more accommodative fiscal and monetary policies. Lower oil prices are helping, though their impact on near-term growth has been moderated in many countries by incomplete pass-through to retail fuel prices. Consequently, the benefits are mainly in the form of improved fiscal/quasi-fiscal positions and external vulnerabilities rather than stronger growth. Solidifying recent subsidy reforms will help lock in the gains, which can help reduce fiscal and external vulnerabilities where needed and, in other countries, make space for increased growth-enhancing spending.
Although rising, economic growth rates remain too low to make a dent into high unemployment across the region, especially among the youth. Raising economic prospects in a sustainable and inclusive manner suggests the need for multifaceted structural reforms.