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Guidelines for Public Debt Management Amended

The IMF and World Bank staffs have developed two new guidelines to include in the IMF/World Bank Guidelines for Public Debt Management. There have been a couple of developments in the public debt management field since the Guidelines were published in March 2001. In particular, the last two years have witnessed extensive discussions on the ways in which one can assess the sustainability of member countries’ public debts, and on some of the legal features that should be included in bond instruments. Although the Guidelines cover a broad range of debt management activities, issues of public debt sustainability and legal features were not discussed. Now that a broad consensus is beginning to emerge on the appropriate framework to guide debt sustainability discussions and on some of the legal features of debt instruments, the IMF and World Bank staffs have developed two new guidelines that would address these issues so that the Guidelines remain current and reflect sound practice in the public debt management field. The preparation process included consultation with the Boards of both organizations and public debt managers, and resulting comments were incorporated in the final text.
This document is the Background Document on the Amendments.