Rabah Arezki, 20 April 2020

COVID-19 will precipitate ‘peak demand’ for oil with dramatic consequences on oil-exporting countries in the short and medium run. This column provides a perspective on the role of monetary policy in these countries at different horizons. In the short run, (independent) monetary policy should flexibly target inflation. In the medium run, central banks need to coordinate with fiscal authorities to ensure that monetary policy operates around a credible and sustainable fiscal anchor. In the long run, central banks should beware of the existential threats posed by new risks related to stranded assets.

Rabah Arezki, Ha Nguyen, 01 April 2020

Countries in the Middle East and North Africa face a dual shock from the COVID-19 pandemic and a collapse in oil prices. This column explores the policy options available to deal with such shocks, arguing that authorities should sequence and tailor their responses. MENA countries should first focus on responding to the health emergency and economic depression, postponing fiscal consolidation linked to the persistent drop in oil prices until the recovery from the pandemic is well underway. 

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