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The Political Economy of Conditional and Unconditional Foreign Assistance; Grants vs. Loan Rollovers

Author

Listed:
  • Wolfgang Mayer
  • Alex Mourmouras

Abstract

Improving the effectiveness of financial assistance programs is a priority of international financial institutions (IFIs). This paper examines the effectiveness of alternative assistance instruments in a dynamic political economy framework. Economic policies of the receiving country are distorted by the influence of a domestic interest group. The assistance-providing IFI aims at reducing these distortions. The IFI provides assistance either as grants or loans, and either conditionally on reducing policy distortions or unconditionally. The paper shows that, other things constant, one-time grants are more effective than loan rollovers when assistance is unconditional, but that the opposite is true when assistance is conditional.

Suggested Citation

  • Wolfgang Mayer & Alex Mourmouras, 2004. "The Political Economy of Conditional and Unconditional Foreign Assistance; Grants vs. Loan Rollovers," IMF Working Papers 04/38, International Monetary Fund.
  • Handle: RePEc:imf:imfwpa:04/38
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    File URL: http://www.imf.org/external/pubs/cat/longres.aspx?sk=17175
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    References listed on IDEAS

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    1. Dixit, Avinash & Grossman, Gene M & Helpman, Elhanan, 1997. "Common Agency and Coordination: General Theory and Application to Government Policy Making," Journal of Political Economy, University of Chicago Press, vol. 105(4), pages 752-769, August.
    2. Bird, Graham & Hussain, Mumtaz & Joyce, Joseph P., 2004. "Many happy returns? Recidivism and the IMF," Journal of International Money and Finance, Elsevier, vol. 23(2), pages 231-251, March.
    3. Alex Mourmouras & Wolfgang Mayer, 2002. "Vested Interests in a Positive Theory of IFI Conditionality," IMF Working Papers 02/73, International Monetary Fund.
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    Cited by:

    1. Alberto Paloni & Maurizio Zanardi, 2006. "Development Policy Lending, Conditionality, and Ownership: A Dynamic Agency Model Perspective," Review of Development Economics, Wiley Blackwell, vol. 10(2), pages 253-266, May.
    2. Jeronimo Zettelmeyer & Jonathan David Ostry & Olivier D Jeanne, 2008. "A Theory of International Crisis Lending and IMF Conditionality," IMF Working Papers 08/236, International Monetary Fund.

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