Other ESW Reports

282 items available

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This includes miscellaneous ESW types and pre-2003 ESW type reports that are subsequently completed and released.

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Now showing 1 - 10 of 21
  • Publication
    Indonesia : Selected Fiscal Issues in a New Era
    (Washington, DC, 2003-02-14) World Bank
    Despite the substantial progress in managing its fiscal challenges post-1997 financial crisis, Indonesia's risks to the budget have not disappeared, though the Government continues to be committed to fiscal consolidation. While debt sustainability is improving, the budget remains vulnerable to shocks, and, large non-discretionary spending (interest payments, transfers to the regions, personnel spending) still constrain the use of fiscal policy for macroeconomic stabilization, and social risk protection, and, as the fiscal situation improves, and decentralization proceeds, a rethinking of resource allocation becomes necessary. This report assesses Indonesia's progress in dealing with challenges that have altered the fiscal system since the crisis, and reviews options for fiscal consolidation, as well as sectoral issues in the new decentralized environment, including public expenditure management reforms. Suggestions include an increased revenue mobilization to make the budget more risk proof, and an improved tax administration, rather than streamlining the tax structure alone, while the Government's decision to eliminate the fuel subsidy remains critical for fiscal consolidation (which has little social implications). Moreover, the large interest payments burden incurred during the crisis, is crowding out development spending, and similarly, increased transfers to local governments are limiting discretionary spending (which could be accompanied by a decrease in central development spending in areas of regional responsibilities). A refinement of the budget management system is necessary, where the Finance Law would be instrumental in establishing accountability between the Executive, and Parliament.
  • Publication
    Brazil : The New Growth Agenda, Volume 2. Detailed Report
    (Washington, DC, 2002-12-31) World Bank
    During the last century, Brazil was one of the fastest growing economies in the world. Between 1901 and 2000, Brazil's Gross Domestic Product (GDP) per capita grew at an average annual rate of 4.4 percent. Brazil's long-run growth has rivaled that of counties such as South Korea, universally praised as a stellar performer. Brazil does not received the same praise. Perhaps one reason is that more has been expected of Brazil, especially by Brazilians themselves. After all the country is richly endowed with natural resources and is blessed with an energetic people. Perhaps is that economic growth in Brazil has been more erratic than in other countries, or it may be that this economic growth performance has been accompanied by high inequality, thus diminishing the "quality" of growth. How is it that the country with the fastest growth in the region also has the highest inequality? Are the two facts related, and if so, what can be done to improve the pattern of future income growth across the social classes, and reduce its extreme inequality and the breadth and depth of its poverty? The first volume summarizes the overall conclusions for policy drawn from the seven background papers presented in the second volume, and other relevant research, as well as giving a historical account of the driving forces behind Brazilian growth since the 1960s.
  • Publication
    Brazil : The New Growth Agenda, Volume 1. Policy Briefing
    (Washington, DC, 2002-12-31) World Bank
    During the last century, Brazil was one of the fastest growing economies in the world. Between 1901 and 2000, Brazil's Gross Domestic Product (GDP) per capita grew at an average annual rate of 4.4 percent. Brazil's long-run growth has rivaled that of counties such as South Korea, universally praised as a stellar performer. Brazil does not received the same praise. Perhaps one reason is that more has been expected of Brazil, especially by Brazilians themselves. After all the country is richly endowed with natural resources and is blessed with an energetic people. Perhaps is that economic growth in Brazil has been more erratic than in other countries, or it may be that this economic growth performance has been accompanied by high inequality, thus diminishing the "quality" of growth. How is it that the country with the fastest growth in the region also has the highest inequality? Are the two facts related, and if so, what can be done to improve the pattern of future income growth across the social classes, and reduce its extreme inequality and the breadth and depth of its poverty? The first volume summarizes the overall conclusions for policy drawn from the seven background papers presented in the second volume, and other relevant research, as well as giving a historical account of the driving forces behind Brazilian growth since the 1960s.
  • Publication
    India - Maharashtra : Reorienting Government to Facilitate Growth and Reduce Poverty, Volume 1. Executive Summary and Main Report
    (Washington, DC, 2002-10-31) World Bank
    Maharashtra's leadership position in India is under threat. The State is facing several bottlenecks to development: the private sector is no longer embracing Maharashtra and the public sector banks are increasingly reluctant to assist Maharashtra in its off-budget endeavors. Thus, the status quo is not an option. Regaining its leadership position is well within Maharashtra's reach. Among its many strengths are: the large pool of literate and skilled labor force, a well-developed financial system, a talented bureaucracy, and willingness to break with the ways of the past. If the State can successfully implement its reform agenda, it can quickly rebound and be back on the path of growth and prosperity. The lessons of the past decade suggest two guiding principles: First, the Government needs to articulate the message that its reforms are not to hurt, but to help the farmers. If reforms are to succeed, they have to be pro-farmer and pro-poor. Maharashtra's fiscal stress, be it due to power and irrigation subsidies or due to the losses in cotton and sugar interventions, has a close connection with the rural sector. However, as analyzed in Chapter 4, the current rural interventions are imposing a huge and unsustainable fiscal cost on the state, and more importantly, the bulk of the benefits are accruing to the rural rich. the challenge for the government, therefore, is to provide more efficient, equitable, and sustainable assistance to the rural poor. Second, the government's reform program needs to be designed and implemented with a medium- to long-term perspective. Piecemeal, short-term reforms can only bring short-term gains. The Government of Maharashtra faces a simple choice: to try to succeed in a difficult reform endeavor, or, since the policies of the past no longer work, to give up without trying and condemn itself to developmental and fiscal failure. Through its 2002-03 Budget Speech, the Government has indicated that it has chosen the former path. The quicker it moves along it, the greater the chances of success.
  • Publication
    India - Maharashtra : Reorienting Government to Facilitate Growth and Reduce Poverty, Volume 2. Statistical Appendix, Other Annexes, and Workshop Programs
    (Washington, DC, 2002-10-31) World Bank
    Maharashtra's leadership position in India is under threat. The State is facing several bottlenecks to development: the private sector is no longer embracing Maharashtra and the public sector banks are increasingly reluctant to assist Maharashtra in its off-budget endeavors. Thus, the status quo is not an option. Regaining its leadership position is well within Maharashtra's reach. Among its many strengths are: the large pool of literate and skilled labor force, a well-developed financial system, a talented bureaucracy, and willingness to break with the ways of the past. If the State can successfully implement its reform agenda, it can quickly rebound and be back on the path of growth and prosperity. The lessons of the past decade suggest two guiding principles: First, the Government needs to articulate the message that its reforms are not to hurt, but to help the farmers. If reforms are to succeed, they have to be pro-farmer and pro-poor. Maharashtra's fiscal stress, be it due to power and irrigation subsidies or due to the losses in cotton and sugar interventions, has a close connection with the rural sector. However, as analyzed in Chapter 4, the current rural interventions are imposing a huge and unsustainable fiscal cost on the state, and more importantly, the bulk of the benefits are accruing to the rural rich. the challenge for the government, therefore, is to provide more efficient, equitable, and sustainable assistance to the rural poor. Second, the government's reform program needs to be designed and implemented with a medium- to long-term perspective. Piecemeal, short-term reforms can only bring short-term gains. The Government of Maharashtra faces a simple choice: to try to succeed in a difficult reform endeavor, or, since the policies of the past no longer work, to give up without trying and condemn itself to developmental and fiscal failure. Through its 2002-03 Budget Speech, the Government has indicated that it has chosen the former path. The quicker it moves along it, the greater the chances of success.
  • Publication
    Armenia : Growth Challenges and Government Policies, Volume 1. Main Conclusions and Recommendations
    (Washington, DC, 2001-11-30) World Bank
    This report reviews growth trends in Armenia for the period 1994-2000, outlines major weaknesses of existing development patterns, and suggests a package of policy recommendations designed to accelerate enterprise restructuring, attract investment, and encourage the creation of new businesses in the medium term (three to five years). Such steps are needed to systain (and preferably to increase) the current growth rates, to stop emigration among the young and skilled, and to reduce poverty. The government needs to focus much more clearly on generating the environment for private sector led growth by removing bottlenecks in policies, infrastructure, and institutions that prevent new private businesses from flourishing. International aid donors can help by supporting the removal of administrative barriers for investments, the rehabilitation of infrastructure, and the creation of "restructuring agencies" that will enable firms in key sectors to overcome or avoid common constraints to business growth in Armenia. Successful restructuring by such firms should have a demonstration effect on the country's economy and help consolidate public support for moving forward the program of reform begun a decade ago.
  • Publication
    Armenia : Growth Challenges and Government Policies, Volume 2. Main Report
    (Washington, DC, 2001-11-30) World Bank
    This report reviews growth trends in Armenia for the period 1994-2000, outlines major weaknesses of existing development patterns, and suggests a package of policy recommendations designed to accelerate enterprise restructuring, attract investment, and encourage the creation of new businesses in the medium term (three to five years). Such steps are needed to systain (and preferably to increase) the current growth rates, to stop emigration among the young and skilled, and to reduce poverty. The government needs to focus much more clearly on generating the environment for private sector led growth by removing bottlenecks in policies, infrastructure, and institutions that prevent new private businesses from flourishing. International aid donors can help by supporting the removal of administrative barriers for investments, the rehabilitation of infrastructure, and the creation of "restructuring agencies" that will enable firms in key sectors to overcome or avoid common constraints to business growth in Armenia. Successful restructuring by such firms should have a demonstration effect on the country's economy and help consolidate public support for moving forward the program of reform begun a decade ago.
  • Publication
    Indonesia : The Imperative for Reform
    (Washington, DC, 2001-11) World Bank
    In the one hundred days since assuming office, the new administration of Megawati Soekarnoputri has made little progress on structural and governance reforms. The events of September 11 and the slowdown in the global economy worsened the investment climate in Indonesia, adding to the government's already formidable array of challenges. Indonesia's recovery has lagged behind its neighbors and over half its population vulnerable to poverty, more than any other crisis country. Moreover, its fragile banking and corporate sectors, and the precarious state of its government finances, make the country highly vulnerable to risks--with immediate implications for fiscal sustainability. Donors need to be realistic about what is feasible, given strong vested interests, severe institutional weaknesses, the uncertainties arising from decentralization, and a turbulent transition to democracy. Progress is most needed in the key areas of structural reforms, good governance, and empowering and investing in the poor. Together with fiscal sustainability, they are consistent with the premise that stability, growth, and effective government are the key ingredients for long-lasting and sustainable poverty reduction.
  • Publication
    Brazil - Broadening the Base for Growth : A Report on the State of Bahia
    (Washington, DC, 2001-10-26) World Bank
    Over the last thirty years, Bahia has transformed itself from a somnolent rural economy to the leading manufacturing state of the Northeast. In the process, the state government has developed a reputation as a modernizing, fiscally responsible administration. But problems remain. Growth rates, even since the last recession, have been modest. Poverty remains widespread. The aim of this report is to define ways which the state can take to provide the basis for sustained, broad-based economic growth. Overall, the report is optimistic about Bahia's prospects. The economy is increasingly diversified. New entrants to the labor force, while still under-skilled, are better educated than their forebears. The state's strong fiscal condition gives it room to address gaps in social services. But a less capital-biased growth strategy, combined with 1) federal-level reforms in fiscal policy, labor legislation, and pension regulation; and 2) state-level reforms in the management of social services, would enhance the state's growth prospects and hasten the reduction of poverty.
  • Publication
    Poverty and Income Distribution in a High Growth Economy : The Case of Chile 1987-98, Volume 1. Main Report
    (Washington, DC, 2001-08-30) World Bank
    The study analyzes Chile's strong economic growth, and well directed social programs, a combination that reduced the poverty rate in half, during a period of just eleven years. The previously noted trends in falling poverty, in terms of incidence, depth, and severity, continued into 1998, and the analysis shows there was unambiguously less poverty between 1994, and 1998, observed at all levels of income. Clearly, income poverty is related to, and impacted by a number of important factors, such as level of education, larger families, or families headed by women, and employment opportunities. Evidence shows Chile achieved considerable improvements in key social indicators, i.e., infant mortality, life expectancy, and educational coverage, for the combination of the three social sector deficit measures of poverty - education, health, and housing - with the income poverty measure, reveals that fifty one percent of all households have neither social sector, nor income deficits. Nonetheless, income inequality remained high by international standards, and appeared to have worsened between 1994-98. Thus, adjusting income inequality for social spending became an important estimate, particularly if social programs were growing. The methodology estimated imputed income transfers from subsidies in the three sectors, and the analysis confirmed that adjustments for in-kind income transfers, substantially reduce the Gini coefficient on income inequality. Results indicate that Chile's success in reducing income disparities through social spending is linked to its system for targeting social programs.