The International Monetary Fund (IMF) works to foster international monetary cooperation, secure financial stability, facilitate international trade, promote high employment and sustainable economic growth, and reduce poverty around the world. Created in 1945, the IMF is governed by and accountable to the 187 countries that make up its near-global membership. It provides policy advice and financing to members in economic difficulties and also works with developing nations to help them achieve macroeconomic stability and reduce poverty.
WHAT WE DO
With its near-global membership of 187 countries, the IMF is uniquely placed to help member governments take advantage of the opportunities—and manage the challenges—posed by globalization and economic development more generally. The IMF tracks global economic trends and performance, alerts its member countries when it sees problems on the horizon, provides a forum for policy dialogue, and passes on know-how to governments on how to tackle economic difficulties.
Key IMF activities. The IMF supports its membership by providing:
Policy advice to governments and central banks based on analysis of economic trends and cross-country experiences;
Research, statistics, forecasts, and analysis based on tracking of global, regional, and individual economies and markets;
Loans to help countries overcome economic difficulties;
Concessional loans to help fight poverty in developing countries; and
Technical assistance and training to help countries improve the management of their economies.
The IMF's fundamental mission is to help ensure stability in the international system. It does so in three ways: keeping track of the global economy and the economies of member countries; lending to countries with balance of payments difficulties; and giving practical help to members.
The IMF oversees the international monetary system and monitors the financial and economic policies of its members. It keeps track of economic developments on a national, regional, and global basis, consulting regularly with member countries and providing them with macroeconomic and financial policy advice.
II. Technical Assistance
To assist mainly low- and middle-income countries in effectively managing their economies, the IMF provides practical guidance and training on how to upgrade institutions, and design appropriate macroeconomic, financial, and structural policies.
The IMF provides loans to countries that have trouble meeting their international payments and cannot otherwise find sufficient financing on affordable terms. This financial assistance is designed to help countries restore macroeconomic stability by rebuilding their international reserves, stabilizing their currencies, and paying for imports—all necessary conditions for relaunching growth. The IMF also provides concessional loans to low-income countries to help them develop their economies and reduce poverty.
HOW WE DO IT
The IMF's main goal is to ensure the stability of the international monetary and financial system. It helps resolve crises, and works with its member countries to promote growth and alleviate poverty. It has three main tools at its disposal to carry out its mandate: surveillance, technical assistance and training, and lending. These functions are underpinned by the IMF's research and statistics.
ON THE AGENDA
Emergency lending to emerging markets
Helping low-income countries fight the crisis
Advocating global fiscal stimulus
Reforming the international financial system
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