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Appendix IV. External Relations

Author(s):
International Monetary Fund
Published Date:
October 1997
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As in recent years, in 1996/97 developments in the world economy kept the Fund frequently in the public eye. This entailed more extensive use of existing instruments to inform the public about the Fund and the introduction of new ways of communicating the Fund’s activities to an expanding audience.

Instruments

The Fund’s external relations activities aim to contribute to public understanding of, and support for, sound economic polities. These activities are in line with the purposes of the institution, as set forth in the Articles of Agreement, which call on the Fund to “act as a centre for the collection and exchange of information on monetary and financial problems, thus facilitating the preparation of studies designed to assist members in developing policies which further the purposes of the Fund” (Article VIII, Section 5(c)). The Fund’s external relations activities take three basic forms: publishing analysis and research, making known the Fund’s views on matters bearing on the world economy, and broadening public awareness of the institution’s responsibilities and activities. They target the public directly, through publications, and indirectly through a number of constituencies—such as the news media, nonofficials, and the academic community—that serve as intermediaries between the Fund and broader audiences.

Publications and press releases are foremost among the Fund’s tools of communication. The Fund publishes reports, periodicals, statistical compilations, books, and pamphlets. Collectively, these serve to disseminate information on national, regional and world economic developments and prospects, thereby complementing the Fund’s surveillance role and fostering international economic cooperation. They also make the research carried out by the Fund known to a wider audience.

Press releases are the chief vehicle for informing the public in a timely fashion, through the media, of Executive Board decisions on the use of Fund resources and on other issues of public interest. The News Brief series has been used to make the public aware of the views of Fund management and senior staff on certain matters.

Publication in printed form has been supplemented in recent years by the use of CD-ROM and computer tape. More recently, increasing amounts of information have been provided on the Internet. In addition, the Fund has produced a series of videos on the work of the institution that have been distributed to television networks and universities and have been shown at seminars and briefings.

Management and staff contacts with various groups outside the Fund are a second major means of communication with the Fund’s global audience. Management speeches, press conferences, and interviews make the Fund’s views known and further public debate on a variety of issues. On occasion, senior staff also give press briefings, in consultation with the national authorities, at the conclusion of missions; and, increasingly, resident representatives are improving the understanding of the Fund among the media, nongovernmental organizations (NGOs), and other representatives of civil society. In addition, seminars and briefings are organized for nonotofficials both at headquarters and in the field, and Fund staff deliver papers to and participate in a wide range of externally organized seminars, conferences, and symposiums.

Greater Openness in Recent Years

In recent years, the Fund’s external relations program has operated in a climate of rising expectations about the institution’s willingness to report on its work and to engage in public discussion The Fund has responded to this changing environment by providing more information on a wider range of topics to a broader audience.

The amount and scope of information made available to the public have increased through enrichment of the publications program to include the release of Article IV background papers; greater coverage of surveillance in the Annual Report; publication of more of the analytical papers discussed in the Executive Board; more timely and focused coverage of countries, policy issues, and Fund activities in the IMF Survey; and wider distribution of research in the Working Papers and Papers on policy Analysis and Assessment series. In 1996, access to the Fund archives was liberalized substantially.

Broadening the reach of external communications has involved activities in a number of areas. Since 1989, external relations work has been extended to central and eastern Europe, the Baltic countries, Russia, and other countries of the former Soviet Union, Globally, there has been greater dialogue with nonofficials, including NGOs, religious groups, and labor leaders. Management and senior staff have made themselves available more frequently and more universally among the Fund’s membership for interviews and outreach, A new series of Fact Sheets, initially prepared to meet information requests by NGOs at the Madrid Annual Meetings, have since been updated regularly and given wider distribution to allow quick reference to basic information about the Fund, And management and staff have become steadily more active—for example, through op-ed articles and letters to the editor—in correcting misunderstandings about the work of the institution.

Box 11.Fund’s Public Web Site

To broaden general knowledge about the institution and its work, a selection of Fund information was made publicly accessible on the Internet and World Wide Web beginning in 1994/95 (see Annual Report, 1995, page 197). Since then, the Fund’s use of this rapidly evolving electronic medium has grown markedly. An internal web site, giving Fund staff easy on-line access to a wealth of institutional information and data, was opened in April 1996. The Fund’s public web site, created and maintained by the External Relations Department in cooperation with other departments, opened in September 1996 at the address http://www.imf.org. The contents of the site are fully indexed, cross-referenced, and searchable, and users’ comments are invited. From the home-page menu (see figure), hypertext links lead to various submenus that in turn connect with other links and sites, many of them also indexed and searchable.

Fund’s Home Page on the World Wide Web:

http://www.imf.org

New Initiatives in 1996/97

During the financial year, external relations activities continued at a high level. New initiatives also served to extend further the reach of these activities and the institution’s openness. These included:

  • the decision by the Executive Board in April 1997 on the release of Press Information Notices following Article IV consultations (see Chapter 4);
  • the establishment, in September 1996, of a public web site on the Internet, offering an assortment of material on the Fund (Box 11);
  • the focusing of overseas information and public affairs work (with the media, NGOs, and members of the academic community) primarily in Asia, ahead of the September 1997 Annual Meetings in Hong Kong, China;1
  • the participation by staff, at the request of the governments of Venezuela and Egypt, in a series of meetings of the authorities with the media, civil society, and academia to help explain the rationale of economic reform programs being supported by the Fund;
  • the launch of a new series of policy seminars, for parliamentarians, at the Joint Vienna Institute—with the inaugural seminar, for Russian parliamentarians, taking place in August 1996 and the second seminar, for Ukrainian parliamentarians, following in March 1997;
  • the posting on the Fund’s web site of the full texts of, among others. Working Papers, Papers on Policy Analysis and Assessment, Finance and Development, the IMF Survey, and the Publications Catalog in order to make the Fund’s research and analytical work and activities more widely available; and
  • the inauguration, in September 1996, of a new series of publications, the Economic Issues series, the aim of which is to make accessible to a wider readership of nonspecialists some of the economic research produced in the Fund on topical issues. A complete list of publications issued during 1996/97 appears in Table IV.1.
Table IV.1Publications Issued, Financial Year Ended April 30, 1997
Reports and Other Documents

Annual Report of the Executive Board for the Financial Year Ended April 30, 1996 (English, French, German, and Spanish). Free.



Exchange Arrangements and Exchange Restrictions, Annual Report 1996 $76.00 ($38.00 to full-time university faculty members and students).



Summary Proceedings of the Fifty-First Annual Meeting of the Board of Governors (1996). Free. The IMF Committee on Balance of Payments Statistics, Annual Report, 1996. Free.
Periodic PublicationsOccasional Papers
Balance of Payments Statistics Yearbook

Vol. 47, 1996. A two-part yearbook. $64.00 a year.



Direction of Trade Statistics

Quarterly, with yearbook. $104.00 a year. $52.00 to full-time university faculty members and students. $30.00 for yearbook only.



Government Finance Statistics Yearbook

Vol. 20, 1996 (introduction and titles of lines in English, French, and Spanish

). $58.00.



International Financial Statistics

Monthly, with yearbook (English, French, and Spanish). $230.00 a year. $115.00 to full-time university faculty members and students. $60.00 for yearbook only.



Staff Papers

Four times a year. $54.00 a year. $27.00 to full-time university faculty members and students.



The five publications listed above may be obtained at a special rate of $360.00 ($180.00 to full-time university faculty members and students). Magnetic tape subscriptions to Balance of Payments Statistics Yearbook, Direction of Trade Statistics, Government Finance Statistics Yearbook, and International Financial Statistics are also available. International Financial Statistics is also available on CD-ROM. Price information is available on request.



Finance and Development

Issued jointly with the World Bank; quarterly (English, Arabic, Chinese, French, German, Portuguese, and Spanish). Free. Airspeed delivery, $20.00.



IMF Survey

Twice monthly, but only once in December (English, French, and Spanish). Private firms and individuals are charged at an annual rate of $79.00.
No. 136. Jordan: Strategy for Adjustment and Growth, edited by Edouard Maciejewski and Ahsan Mansur.

No. 137. The Lao People’s Democratic Republic: Systemic Transformation and Adjustment, edited by Ichiro Otani and Chi Do Pham.



No. 138. Aftermath of the CFA Franc Devaluation, by Jean A.P. Clément, with Johannes Mueller, Stéphane Cossé, and Jean Le Dem.



No. 139. Reinvigorating Growth in Developing Countries: Lessons from Adjustment Policies in Eight Economies, by David Goldsbrough, Sharmini Coorey, Louis Dicks-Mireaux, Balazs Horvath, Kalpana Kochhar, Mauro Mecagni, Erik Offerdal, and Jianping Zhou.



No. 140. Government Reform in New Zealand, by Graham C. Scott.

No. 141. Monetary and Exchange System Reforms in China: An Experiment in Gradualism, by Hassanali Mehran, Marc Quintyn, Tom Nordman, and Bernard Laurens.



No. 142. Quasi-Fiscal Operations of Public Financial Institutions, by G.A. Mackenzie and Peter Stella.



No. 143. Adjustment for Growth: The African Experience, by Michael T. Hadjimichael, Michael Nowak, Robert Sharer, and Amor Tahari.

No. 144. National Bank of Poland: The Road to Indirect Instruments, by Piero Ugolini.



No. 145. Exchange Rate Movements and Their Impact on Trade and Investment in the APEC Region, by Takatoshi Ito, Peter Isard, Steven Symansky, and Tamim Bayoumi.



No. 146. Thailand: The Road to Sustained Growth, by Kalpana Kochhar, Louis Dicks-Mireaux, Balazs Horvath, Mauro Mecagni, Erik Offerdal, and Jianping Zhou.
No. 147. Aging Populations and Public Pension Schemes, by Sheetal K. Chand and Albert Jaeger.



No. 148. Nigeria: Experience with Structural Adjustment, by Gary Moser, Scott Rogers, and Reinold van Til, with Robin Kibuka and Inutu Lukonga.



No. 149. The Composition of Fiscal Adjustment and Growth: Lessons from Fiscal Reforms in Eight Economies, by G.A. Mackenzie, David W. H. Orsmond, and Philip R. Gerson.



No. 150. Kuwait: From Reconstruction to Accumulation for Future Generations, by Nigel Andrews Chalk, Mohamed El-Erian, Susan J. Fennell, Alexei R. Kireyev, and John F. Wilson.



Occasional Papers Nos. 136-50 are available for $15.00 each, with a special price of $12.00 each to full-time university faculty members and students.



World Economic and Financial Surveys

World Economic Outlook: A Survey by the Staff of the International Monetary Fund

Twice a year (May and October) (Arabic, English, French, and Spanish).

$35.00 ($24.00 to full-time university faculty members and students).



International Capital Markets: Developments, Prospects, and Policy Issues

By a staff team led by David Folkerts-Landau and Takatoshi Ito.

$20.00 ($12.00 to full-time university faculty members and students).



Books and Seminar Volumes

Balance of Payments Textbook

$25.00.



Bank Soundness and Macroeconomic Policy

By Carl-Johan Lindgren, Gillian Garcia, and Matthew I. Saal.

$23.50.



Building on Progress: Reform and Growth in the Middle East and North Africa

By the Middle Eastern Department.

$15.00.



Central Bank Reform in the Transition Economies Edited by V. Sundararajan, Arne B. Petersen, and Gabriel Sensenbrenner.

$25.00.



Coordinated Portfolio Investment Guide

$25.00.



Currency Convertibility in the Middle East and North Africa Edited by Manuel Guitián and Saleh M. Nsouli.



$19.50.



Current Legal Issues Affecting Central Banks, Volume IV

Edited by Robert C. Effros.

$65.00.

Economic Policies and Unemployment Dynamics in Europe Edited by S.G.B. Henry and Dennis J. Snower. $24.00.
Financial Programming and Policy: The Case of Sri Lanka By a staff team in the IMF Institute.

$19.00.



Functioning of the International Monetary System, Volumes I and II

Edited by Jacob A. Frenkel and Morris Goldstein. $50.00, two-volume set.



The Future of the SDR in Light of Changes in the International Monetary System

Edited by Michael Mussa, James M. Boughton, and Peter Isard. $27.50.



IMF Glossary, English-French-Arabic By IMF Bureau of Language Services. $26.00.



IMF Glossary, English-French-Spanish By IMF Bureau of Language Services. $35.00.



Inflation and Growth in China

Edited by Manuel Guitián and Robert Mundell.

$25.00.



Interest Rate Liberalization and Money Market Development: Selected Country Experiences

Edited by Hassanali Mehran, Bernard Laurens, and Marc

Quintyn.

$20.00.



Macroeconomics and the Environment Edited by Ved P. Gandhi. $22.50.



Recent Economic Developments, Prospects, and Progress in Institution Building in the West Bank and Gaza Strip Edited by Milan Zavadjil, Nur Calika, Oussama Kanaan, and Dale Chua. $15.00.



The Social Effects of Economic Adjustment on Arab Countries Edited by Taher H. Kanaan. $20.00.



Tax Law Design and Drafting, Volume I Edited by Victor Thuronyi. $25.00.



The Uruguay Round and the Arab Countries Edited by Said El-Naggar. $20.00.



Trade Policy Issues

Edited by Chorng-Huey Wong and Naheed Kirmani. $22.00.



Ukraine: Accelerating the Transition to Market Edited by Peter K. Cornelius and Patrick Lenain. $23.50.



Economic Issues

No. 1. Growth in East Asia: What We Can and What We Cannot Infer By Michael Sarel. Free.
No. 2. Does the Exchange Rate Regime Matter for Inflation and Growth?

By Atish R. Ghosh, Ann-Marie Guide, Jonathan D. Ostry, and Holger Wolf.

Free.



No. 3. Confronting Budget Deficits Free.



No. 4. Fiscal Reforms That Work

By C. John McDermott and Robert F. Wescott.

Free.



No. 5. Transformation to Open Market Operations: Developing Economies and Emerging Markets By Stephen Axilrod. Free.



No. 6. Why Worry About Corruption?

By Paolo Mauro.

Free.



No. 7. Sterilizing Capital Inflows

By Jang-Yung Lee.

Free.



No. 8. Why Is China Growing So Fast? By Zuliu Hu and Mohsin S. Khan. Free.



Pamphlets

No. 45. Financial Organization and Operations of the IMF By the Treasurer’s Department. Fourth edition. (Russian). Free.



No. 49. Guidelines for Fiscal Adjustment By the Fiscal Affairs Department. (Spanish). Free.



No. 50. The Role of the IMF: Financing and Its Interactions with Adjustment and Surveillance

By Paul R. Masson and Michael Mussa, Research Department. (Spanish). Free.
No. 51. Debt Relief for Low-Income Countries By Anthony Boote and Kamau Thugge. (English). Free.



Booklets

Facing the Globalized World Economy: The IMF Experience Four Addresses by Michel Camdessus. (English, French, Spanish). Free.



Growth and Stability in the Middle East and North Africa By Mohamed El-Erian, Sena Ekan, Susan J. Fennell, and Jean Pierre Chauffour. Free.



Policy Challenges in the Gulf Cooperation Council Countries

By Cyrus Sassanpour.

Free.



Publications Catalog, 1995–1996 (English). Free.



Publications of the International Monetary Fund: March 1996, April 1996, May 1996, June 1996, July 1996, August 1996, September 1996, October 1996, November 1996, December 1996, January 1997, February 1997, and March 1997. Monthly (English). Free.



Working Papers and Papers on Policy Analysis and Assessment

IMF Working Papers and PapersonPolicy Analysis and Assessment are designed to make Fund staff research available to a wider audience. They represent works in progress and reflect the views of the individual authors rather than those of the Fund.



Working Papers 96/31–96/143 and 97/1–97/45 were issued in 1996/97.

$7.00 each; $210.00 for annual subscription.



Papers on Policy Analysis and Assessment 96/4–96/9 and 97/1–97/4 were issued in 1996/97. $7.00 each; $80.00 for annual subscription.
Staff Country Reports
IMF Staff Country Reports comprise comprehensive material on economic developments and trends in member countries. The reports are prepared by Fund staff missions as background information for the periodic consultations with members. They contain reports on recent economic developments, background papers, and statistical annexes and appendices.
96/25BelgiumRecent Economic Developments
96/26BelgiumSelected Background Issues
96/27TunisiaRecent Economic Developments
96/28ZaïreBackground Information and Statistical Data
96/29United Kingdom—Hong KongRecent Economic Developments
96/30TurkmenistanRecent Economic Developments
96/31SwitzerlandRecent Economic Developments
96/32SwitzerlandSelected Background Issues
96/33ZimbabweRecent Economic Developments
96/34SurinameStatistical Annex
96/35ItalyBackground Economic Issues
96/36ItalyStatistical Appendix
96/37AustraliaRecent Economic Developments
96/38CanadaSelected Issues
96/39El SalvadorStatistical Appendix
96/40China, People’s Republic ofRecent Economic Developments
96/41China, People’s Republic ofSelected Issues
96/42BoliviaRecent Economic Developments
96/43BurundiStatistical Annex
96/44DjiboutiStatistical Annex
96/45MauritaniaStatistical Appendix
96/46SeychellesRecent Economic Developments
96/47LuxembourgRecent Economic Developments
96/48LuxembourgSelected Issues
96/49BelizeRecent Economic Developments
96/50Trinidad and TobagoStatistical Appendix
96/51UgandaBackground Paper on Issues in Financial Sector Reform, and Statistical Appendix
96/52EthiopiaSelected Issues
96/53Brunei DarussalamRecent Economic Developments
96/54Lao People’s Democratic RepublicRecent Economic Developments
96/55Tajikistan, Republic ofRecent Economic Developments
96/56SpainRecent Economic Developments
96/57SpainSelected Issues—Labor Market Policies and Unemployment Dynamics
96/58Dominican RepublicRecent Economic Developments
96/59MadagascarSelected Issues and Statistical Appendix
96/60AustriaRecent Economic Developments and Selected Issues
96/61ChadRecent Economic Developments
96/62GrenadaStatistical Appendix
96/63NepalSelected Issues
96/64South AfricaSelected Economic Issues
96/65NigerBackground Paper
96/66EritreaRecent Economic Developments
96/67Costa RicaStatistical Appendix
96/68MalawiRecent Economic Developments
96/69GhanaSelected Issues and Statistical Annex
96/70Sao Tome and PrincipeSelected Issues and Statistical Appendix
96/71AlgeriaSelected Economic Issues
96/72LithuaniaRecent Economic Developments
96/73UzbekistanSelected Issues and Statistical Appendix
96/74Solomon IslandsRecent Economic Developments
96/75VanuatuRecent Economic Developments
96/76VanuatuBackground Paper
96/77Congo, Republic ofStatistical Annex
96/78IrelandRecent Economic Developments
96/79DominicaStatistical Appendix
96/80the Netherlands, Kingdom ofSelected Issues
96/81the Netherlands, Kingdom ofStatistical Appendix
96/82PanamaRecent Economic Developments
96/83ThailandStatistical Appendix
96/84NamibiaStatistical Annex
96/85ParaguayRecent Economic Developments
96/86Antigua and BarbudaStatistical Annex
96/87VenezuelaRecent Economic Developments
96/88ZambiaStatistical Annex
96/89ChileRecent Economic Developments
96/90JapanRecent Economic Developments
96/91San MarinoRecent Economic Developments
96/92IndonesiaRecent Economic Developments
96/93United StatesRecent Economic Developments
96/94UruguayRecent Economic Developments
96/95FinlandSelected Issues and Statistical Appendix
96/96EstoniaSelected Issues
96/97JamaicaRecent Economic Developments
96/98Kyrgyz RepublicRecent Economic Developments
96/99Republic of BelarusRecent Economic Developments
96/100Sri LankaSelected Issues
96/101BangladeshSelected Issues
96/102BeninRecent Economic Developments
96/103Cape VerdeRecent Economic Developments
96/104Bosnia and HerzegovinaRecent Economic Developments
96/105Marshall IslandsRecent Economic Developments
96/106ComorosRecent Economic Developments
96/107Micronesia, Federated States ofRecent Economic Developments
96/108Iran, Islamic Republic ofStatistical Appendix
96/109HungarySelected Issues
96/110HungaryStatistical Tables
96/111GermanyRecent Economic Developments and Selected Issues
96/112SwedenSelected Issues
96/113FijiSelected Issues
96/114JapanSelected Issues
96/115MalaysiaStatistical Appendix
96/116GeorgiaRecent Economic Developments
96/117Moldova, Republic ofRecent Economic Developments
96/118Armenia, Republic ofRecent Economic Developments and Selected Issues
96/119LesothoRecent Economic Developments
96/120SloveniaRecent Economic Developments
96/121GreeceRecent Economic Developments and Selected Issues
96/122TurkeyRecent Economic Developments
96/123GuyanaRecent Economic Developments and Selected Issues
96/124NicaraguaRecent Economic Developments
96/125CameroonSelected Issues and Statistical Appendix
96/126The BahamasRecent Economic Developments
96/127GuatemalaStatistical Appendix
96/128HaitiStatistical Annex
96/129PortugalSelected Issues and Statistical Appendix
96/130United KingdomRecent Economic Developments
96/131IndiaRecent Economic Developments
96/132IndiaSelected Issues
96/133TanzaniaSelected Issues and Statistical Appendix
96/134St. Vincent/GrenadinesRecent Economic Developments
96/135Côte d’IvoireStatistical Annex
96/136KoreaSelected Issues
96/137KoreaStatistical Appendix
96/138BarbadosStatistical Appendix
96/139St. LuciaRecent Economic Developments
96/140RwandaSelected Issues and Statistical Appendix
96/141MaliSelected Issues and Statistical Annex
96/142MozambiqueRecent Economic Developments
96/143Republic of LatviaRecent Economic Developments
96/144New ZealandSelected Issues and Statistical Appendix
96/145VietnamRecent Economic Developments
96/146VietnamSelected Issues
96/147Czech RepublicRecent Economic Developments
96/148Equatorial GuineaRecent Economic Developments
97/1AzerbaijanRecent Economic Developments
97/2IsraelSelected Issues and Statistical Appendix
97/3Papua New GuineaStatistical Appendix
97/4Slovenia, Republic ofStatistical Appendix
97/5BhutanSelected Issues
97/6MoroccoSelected Issues
97/7HondurasStatistical Appendix
97/8BelgiumSelected Issues
97/9CambodiaRecent Economic Developments
97/10GuineaStatistical Annex
97/11NigeriaStatistical Appendix
97/12SingaporeStatistical Appendix
97/13TogoRecent Economic Developments
97/14Burkina FasoStatistical Tables
97/15IcelandRecent Economic Developments
97/16JordanStatistical Appendix
97/17SudanRecent Economic Developments
97/18SwitzerlandSelected Issues and Statistical Appendix
97/19FranceSelected Issues
97/20CanadaSelected Issues
97/21AlbaniaRecent Economic Developments
97/22AustraliaRecent Economic Developments
97/23AustraliaSelected Issues
97/24Central African RepublicRecent Economic Developments
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1Thus, a regional press seminar was held in Brunei Darussalam for representatives of the media from Hong Kong, China; Indonesia; Thailand; Malaysia; the Philippines; and Singapore. Information and public affairs missions visited Hong Kong, China; India; Japan; and the Philippines, Regional conferences were organized in Hong Kong, China and in Indonesia. Regional press seminars were also held in Bolivia and Jordan in 1996/97, and a regional labor leaders seminar was held in Zimbabwe.

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