The IMF’s latest assessment of Jamaica’s economic performance is very positive (see http://www.imf.org/external/pubs/ft/scr/2007/cr07152.pdf). It notes that the economy registered its best growth for nearly a decade, at just under 3% in FY 2006-7. Equally significant, prices rose by 6 1/2% in FY 2006-7, compared to a recent high of 19% in September 2005. The improvement in agricultural activity helped in both cases. The current account of the balance of payments also improved, helped by increased tourist receipts and remittances. With the help of capital inflows, net international reserves reached historically high levels, at just about US$ 2.3 billion.
However, the budgetary picture remains worrisome, and fiscal targets for FY 2006/07 were missed by a wide margin notwithstanding the overall strong economic context. Continue reading
A Dominican friend of mine, Thomson Fontaine, recently reviewed a book by Dr. Courtney Blackman, former Governor of the Central Bank of Barbados, entitled The Practice of Economic Management: A Caribbean Perspective. The review appeared in the Winter 2007 Harvard International Review and is copyrighted, and I reproduce it below.
Mr. Fontaine is an economist at the International Monetary Fund (IMF). He is also an executive member of the Dominica Academy of Arts and Sciences and President of the Caribbean Association of World Bank IMF Staff. He also manages the website http://thedominican.net.
Here is the review:
In this compelling selection of 22 essays, Dr. Courtney Blackman, the founding governor of the Central Bank of Barbados, lays out a clear and concise description of economic issues affecting the Caribbean within a broader political context. Continue reading
The April 2007 Regional Economic Outlook of the Western Hemisphere, recently published by the IMF produces what seems to be the first attempt at an overall assessment of CWC’s economic impact. It comments on “The Caribbean: Growth and Fiscal Effects of the 2007 Cricket World Cup”, Continue reading