Masthead graphic based on a painting by Gudrun Thriemer.

Sunday, May 10, 2009

"Middle Eastern and North African economies coping well with global crisis: IMF," MENA Report, May 10, 2009.

[Middle Eastern countries have not followed the model of massive bailouts for banks and selected industries. -jlt]

The International Monetary Fund (IMF) today said that economic growth in the Middle East, North Africa, Afghanistan, and Pakistan (MENAP) region is projected to decline from 5.7 per cent in 2008 to 2.6 per cent in 2009.

Releasing the IMF's 'May 2009 Economic Outlook for the Middle East and Central Asia' today at the Dubai International Financial Centre (DIFC), Masood Ahmed, Director of IMF's Middle East and Central Asia Department, said: "The Middle East and North Africa will be negatively affected by the current global economic crisis, but it is likely to fare better than many others. This is in part due to prudent financial and economic management, and in part to the fact that oil exporters in the region can draw upon their large reserves to cushion the impact of the global slowdown for their own economies and for the economies of their neighboring countries with whom they have growing economic links."

  In the GCC, lower interest rates with monetary easing, accompanied by a counter-cyclical fiscal policy response based on sustained investment spending, along with related preemptive measures boosted liquidity, and supported the banking and financial sector. This sound policy response, vast financial reserves resulting from an accumulation of current account and fiscal surpluses, helped restore consumer and investor confidence and in turn have boosted the resilience of the economies in the region to the crisis.
Dr. Nasser Al Saidi,
Chief Economist
Dubai International Finance Centre Authority

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