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Coordinating Aid for Regional Cooperation Projects: The Experience of Central Asia

  • Pomfret, Richard

For the Central Asian countries the dissolution of the Soviet Union led to economic disintegration as old coordination mechanisms disappeared and new national borders appeared. This paper analyses why it has been difficult to coordinate aid for regional cooperation projects (e.g., on the Aral Sea or trade facilitation) whose economic benefits appear positive. Bilateral aid flows to Central Asia have been dominated by geopolitical rather than economic considerations, and have been at best narrowly national in focus and at worst regionally divisive. Regional organizations composed of Central Asian countries and various neighbours have also competed rather than cooperated, so that the most plausible source of coordinated aid for regional cooperation projects is the multilateral agencies. A key role for aid donors is to provide technical assistance in analysing and explaining benefits, and how these affect various interests. Initial advantages which multilateral agencies had as impartial providers of technical advice were undermined in 1992-93 when the IMF?s strong position in favour of retaining the ruble turned out to be...

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Paper provided by World Institute for Development Economic Research (UNU-WIDER) in its series Working Paper Series with number UNU-WIDER Research Paper RP2007/48.

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Length: 36 pages
Date of creation: 2007
Date of revision:
Handle: RePEc:unu:wpaper:rp2007-48
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  1. Ashoka Mody & Ratna Sahay & Thomas Helbling, 2004. "Debt Accumulation in the CIS-7 Countries: Bad Luck, Bad Policies, or Bad Advice?," IMF Working Papers 04/93, International Monetary Fund.
  2. International Economics Department, 1992. "Measuring the incomes of economies of the former Soviet Union," Policy Research Working Paper Series 1057, The World Bank.
  3. Simeon Djankov & Caroline L. Freund, 1998. "Disintegration," International Finance Discussion Papers 618, Board of Governors of the Federal Reserve System (U.S.).
  4. Philip R. Lane, 2003. "The International Community and the CIS-7," The Institute for International Integration Studies Discussion Paper Series iiisdp04, IIIS.
  5. Schiff, Maurice & Winters, L. Alan, 2002. "Regional cooperation, and the role of international organizations and regional integration," Policy Research Working Paper Series 2872, The World Bank.
  6. Richard Pomfret, 1996. "Asian Economies in Transition," Books, Edward Elgar, number 721.
  7. J. Stiglitz, 1998. "More Instruments and Broader Goals: Moving toward the PostWashington Consensus," VOPROSY ECONOMIKI, N.P. Redaktsiya zhurnala "Voprosy Economiki", vol. 8.
  8. Corden, W. Max, 1992. "Trade policy and exchange rate issues in the former Soviet Union," Policy Research Working Paper Series 915, The World Bank.
  9. Djankov, Simeon & Freund, Caroline, 2000. "Disintegration and trade flows : evidence from the Former Soviet Union," Policy Research Working Paper Series 2378, The World Bank.
  10. Jeromin Zettelmeyer & Günther Taube, 1998. "Output Decline and Recovery in Uzbekistan: Past Performance and Future Prospects," IMF Working Papers 98/132, International Monetary Fund.
  11. Richard Pomfret, 2002. "The IMF and the Ruble Zone," Comparative Economic Studies, Palgrave Macmillan, vol. 44(4), pages 37-47, December.
  12. Williamson, John, 2000. "What Should the World Bank Think about the Washington Consensus?," World Bank Research Observer, World Bank Group, vol. 15(2), pages 251-64, August.
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