Government in Industrial Countries
Vito Tanzi and Ludger Schuknecht
Public spending in industrial countries started growing during World War I
but really took off after 1960, mainly to fund social expenditures. But it does not seem
to have led to major measurable gains in economic or social welfare. Governments could
scale back their activities without necessarily compromising their objectives.
Contracts: A Route to Reform?
Mary M. Shirley
Changing the relationship between government and the managers of
state-owned enterprises is key to improving enterprises' performance. Enterprise contracts
can accomplish this, but only under certain conditions.
the Civil Service
Civil service reform often meets with resistance because it is seen only
as a tool for curbing government spending through personnel and wage cuts. But the true
aim of reform is the creation of a skilled and efficient government workforce.
EU Mediterranean Strategy
Union's New Mediterranean Strategy
Saleh M. Nsouli, Amer Bisat, and Oussama Kanaan
Establishing a free-trade area with the southern Mediterranean region is
the centerpiece of the European Union's new Mediterranean strategy. Strong adjustment and
reform efforts by the countries of the region will be essential for the strategy's
Association Agreement Between Tunisia and the European Union
Abdelali Jbili and Klaus Enders
The Association Agreement between Tunisia and the European Union provides
for extensive trade liberalization and enhanced cooperation in many areas. It offers
Tunisia an opportunity to build on the economic progress already made and to further
strengthen relations with its most important trading partner.
World Development Report
Transition Economies into the Global Economy
Zhen Kun Wang
The successful integration of transition countries into the world economy
will benefit all countries. The transition countries themselves face steep adjustment
costs, but these should be outweighed by the benefits of being part of a larger and more
competitive global marketplace.
Transition: Reforming Education and Health Care
The education and health of the labor force have a significant impact on a
country's economic performance. To reap the benefits of modern technologies and increase
productivity, the transition countries need urgently to reform their education and health
||Also in this Issue
Monetary Union: Operating Monetary Policy
Charles Enoch and Marc Quintyn
The Maastricht Treaty provided a road map for the unification of the
currencies of European Union members. But unification requires that monetary policy be
operated by a single monetary institution, and many operational issues must be addressed.
Agricultural Water Pollution in the European Union
Susanne M. Scheierling
As the European Union's member countries make progress on controlling
water pollution from homes and industry, their attention is turning to reducing water
pollution from agriculture. Their experience shows that this can be achieved only through
further integration of agricultural and environmental policies.
Warehouse Receipts in Developing and Transition Economies
Richard Lacroix and Panos Varangis
Warehouse receipts provide an important addition to the store of
negotiable instruments in a country's financial sector. They can be especially useful in
developing and transition economies where new market instruments need to be created.
Social Assistance Program: The Dilemma of Reform
Germany's social assistance program is the subject of intense national
debate. Its large and rapidly growing costs do not make fiscal consolidation easy and,
more important, it aggravates Germany's most pressing economic problem: structural
Reform Proposal for Costa Rica's Pension System
Asli Demirgüç-Kunt and Anita Schwarz
Costa Rica's public pension system, like those of many other countries,
faces long-run financial problems. As its authorities consider reform, they should bear in
mind that although a radical approach inevitably entails higher initial costs than a
gradual approach, the benefits of the former may make it worth pursuing.
in Global Integration
Milan Brahmbhatt and Uri Dadush
Thanks in part to the benefits of global integration, more developing
countries are on course to start catching up with industrial countries. But slow
integrators run the risk of falling further behind unless they change their policies.