IMF surveillance as a signal to attract foreign investment
Poor governance and endemic corruption hamper the efforts of some developing countries to attract foreign investment. Incentive schemes based on verifiable signals of varying costs and quality can be helpful in encouraging their governments to intensify corruption-control efforts. This paper ranks alternative signals, including surveillance by the IMF and other IFIs (International Financial Institutions), as catalysts for private foreign investments. We demonstrate that the ranking crucially depends on the bargaining strength of governments relative to foreign investors. If foreign lenders control the bargain, IFI signals are the first choice. If governments are in control, IFI signals become the choice of last resort.
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