Chapter

The Impact of External Economic Factors: The Role of the IMF

Susan Senior Nello

in Democratic Consolidation in Eastern Europe Volume 2: International and Transnational Factors

Published in print June 2001 | ISBN: 9780199244096
Published online November 2003 | e-ISBN: 9780191600371 | DOI: http://dx.doi.org/10.1093/019924409X.003.0004

Series: Oxford Studies in Democratization

 The Impact of External Economic Factors: The Role of the IMF

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Examines the external economic influences that have affected democratic consolidation. The analysis concentrates on the role played by external economic actors, taking as a case study the IMF and a comparison of its role with that of the EU. The first section considers the IMF provision of financial and technical assistance to facilitate the political and economic transition process. It also examines the role of the IMF in providing policy advice and acting as a catalyst to obtain financial support from other resources. The second section describes the activities of the IMF in transition countries. The third discusses links between a market‐oriented economy and democratization at a general level, while the fourth indicates how tensions may arise between the two in specific cases of post‐communist transition. The fifth section discusses IMF conditionality as applied to the transition countries with regard to the needs, objectives, and characteristics of the country itself, its ability to bargain with the international organization in question, and the international economic and political environment. The sixth section assesses how appropriate the policy descriptions of the IMF were for the economies in transition and what kind of positive and negative lessons might be drawn from applying conditionality. Lastly, the chapter discusses the implications in this context of proposals for IMF reform.

Keywords: conditionality; democratic consolidation; democratization; Eastern Europe; European Union; financial support; IMF; market economy; policy advice; post‐communist countries

Chapter.  14326 words.  Illustrated.

Subjects: Politics

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