Outcomes of the visit of the IMF delegations to Turkmenistan are summed up

Mission of the International Monetary Fund chaired by Martin Sommer for the evaluation of the development of macroeconomic and financial situation, discussion of economic challenges and priorities of economic policy with responsible personnel of the government authorities, representatives of the real and financial sectors and diplomatic community have visited Ashgabat from February 16 to March 6, 2018.

Results of the working visit of the IMF delegation have been reported to President Gurbanguly Berdimuhamedov at the session of the Cabinet of Ministers on March 9.

Hence, after completion of the visit the IMF mission made a statement that Turkmenistan economy continues adapting to unfavourable, however, improving external conditions. The growth rates were 6.5 percent in the last year, what was supported by the increment of gas export, import substitution and expanding crediting policy. At the same time, it was observed that planned opening of new gas processing complexes and completions of big projects would support further growth of economic activity in the country.

According to the opinion of the IMF personnel, the main objective of economic policy remains in the measures for reduction of external misbalances. The experts gave positive evaluation to the reduction of the share of state investments to the economy, having recommended to review the necessity of additional measures including for further improvement of tax and budgetary, monetary and crediting policy, foreign currency regulation in import and other current international transactions.

The objectives of full implementation of the resources and capabilities for stable growth of national economy, rapid transit to market relations especially the development of non-governmental sector and establishment of joint and stock ventures, improvement of activities of stock exchanges and security market have been laid out in the Programme of social and economic development of Turkmenistan in 2018 – 2024 presented by President Gurbanguly Berdimuhamedov.

The statement of the IMF mission highlights that new seven-year plan of Turkmenistan development gives an opportunity to intensify and accelerate structural reforms for the stimulation of stable and comprehensive growth in longer perspective based on diversified market economy.

Privatization of the state property and functioning of free economic zones will support attracting new private investments including the foreign and acquired positive experience might be applied widely throughout Turkmenistan.

In the context of the efforts of official agencies for stimulation of social oriented development, the opportunity to increase the expenditures for health protection and education is growing and hence, to focus the state expenditures to accumulation of human instead of physical capital, the IMF mission summed up.

Finally, wider distribution of macroeconomic and financial information and improvement of their quality will help to improve the understanding of economic trends and will support the attraction of direct foreign investments and improvement of the access to the world financial markets, the IMF mission declared, having expressed the willingness of the Fund to support the reforms of Turkmenistan Government by consultations on the issues of economic policy and improvement of personnel potential including in such spheres as macroeconomic forecasting and the bases of tax and budgetary, monetary and crediting policy.

It is worth mentioning that President Gurbanguly Berdimuhamedov defined specific measures and mechanisms of achievement of the targets mentioned in the press release of the IMF, which were laid out in the programme for the next seven years proposed by the Head of the State in October 2017.

Discussion of the outcomes of work of the mission in Turkmenistan will take place at during the session of the IMF Executive Council in April 2018.