The IIF covers 30-40 emerging and frontier markets, with a particular focus on economic and financing issues. Our reports feature topical analysis of macroeconomic fundamentals, policy developments, political economy dynamics and downside risks.
We have estimated Ukraine’s financing gap at $2 bn (1.5% of GDP). A key ingredient is a stable current account despite growth recovery. This is due to a favorable shift in the current account toward the EU. Domestic politics aside, a key risk is the growth slowdown in Europe.
Venezuela’s oil sector has been in decline for decades. As in Iran, US sanctions are having a severe impact, making the oil output collapse almost unprecedented. Even though sanctions did not deter Asian buyers, the oil sector’s outlook is dim unless policies change.
Holdings of U.S. Treasuries have increased, driven by portfolio restructuring in GOSI and the PIF. As across the GCC, public foreign assets exceed official reserves of the central bank. A further increase in the PIF’s assets abroad is set to improve the country's international investment position.
China currently faces headwinds to growth from both US tariffs and weaker domestic consumption. Compared with 2016, another period of soft exports and weak demand, many cyclical indicators—such as investment and retail—are weaker now, but structural indicators are more promising.
A fiscal stimulus program provided support to private consumption and growth in early 2019. Accommodative policies are expected to continue through 2020, helping growth to remain robust. One-off revenues and cyclically strong tax collection will mask the deterioration in fiscal discipline.
Funding will be tight as the election approaches, mostly due to persistent resident capital flight. We see reserve losses even in upside scenarios that may continue after the election takes place. Argentina will likely need extended IMF support.
Georgia has shown impressive resilience during the period of an economic slowdown in the region. The government’s Four Point Plan is expected to remove structural bottlenecks and support strong growth. However, the economy remains vulnerable to regional developments and external shocks.
Indian shadow banks were under pressure in 2018. They did not experience a severe funding crunch, but remain under continued pressure to deleverage. In response, shadow banks are lending a lot less, affecting overall credit supply and growth negatively.
Lebanon once again is at a crossroads. Painful measures are needed in difficult situations, and achieving fiscal sustainability, rebuilding confidence, and preserving the peg to the dollar inevitably will re-quire strong adjustment.
Loose monetary and fiscal policies have led to the build-up of macroeconomic imbalances. The IMF deal of $6bn will be adequate only with additional foreign inflows and significant rollovers. Decisive policy action and substantial external financing will be needed to achieve macroeconomic stability.