An International Monetary Fund (IMF) mission led by Mr. Martin Sommer visited Ashgabat during February 19–March 6, 2018 to assess macroeconomic and financial developments and discuss economic challenges and policy priorities.
At the end of the mission, Mr. Sommer issued the statement where noted that Turkmen economy continues to adjust to a challenging – although improving –external environment.
In his opinion, the Program of the country’s social and economic development for 2018-2024 provides an opportunity to deepen and accelerate structural reforms to foster sustainable and inclusive growth over the longer term, driven by a more diversified market economy.
The IMF also focuses on the prospects of the free economic zones in the country, which holds the promise of attracting new private investments, including from abroad.
Officially reported growth rate was 6.5 percent in 2017, supported by rising natural gas exports, the IMF noted.
According to the forecasts of experts of the financial institution, the further economic growth of the country will be supported by the planned launch of gas-processing facilities and other large-scale projects.
The IMF also expects a positive effect from the transition of the authorities of Turkmenistan to medium-term budgeting in accordance with GFSM 2001 fiscal data reporting (Government Finance Statistics Manual).
At the same time, the Fund’s experts are well aware on the progress of fiscal, monetary, and financial reforms already made in recent years, recommending further improvement, based on the measures already taken.