Adjunct Professor Yan Islam
Presented by: Yan Islam, Adjunct Professor, Griffith Asia Institute, and former Branch Chief, ILO, Geneva
This paper critically reviews the case for fiscal consolidation in Azerbaijan – a resource-rich, upper middle income West Asian country that shares borders with Russia, Georgia, Armenia and Iran. The paper commences with a global and comparative context in order to point out that, since 2010, fiscal consolidation has become a major feature of the global policy agenda. This development has been shaped by the experience of the Eurozone countries. Hence, there is much that Azerbaijan can learn by revisiting the European experience.
The paper then discusses the case of Azerbaijan. It notes that fiscal consolidation is a perennial feature of public policy discourse in Azerbaijan. Such a discourse is often driven by international financial institutions. The paper assembles both analytical arguments and relevant empirical evidence to suggest that front-loaded fiscal consolidation on a significant scale will impose costs in terms of reduced growth momentum and employment prospects. These negative consequences are unlikely to be compensated by long-run gains in terms of enhanced macroeconomic stability and private sector-led economic diversification. The paper concludes by offering policy recommendations.
Iyanatul [‘Yan’] Islam is currently Adjunct Professor in the Griffith Asia Institute. He held, until recently, a director-level appointment at the International Labour Organization (ILO), Geneva, Switzerland with supervisory responsibility as Chief, Employment and Labour Market Policies Branch, Employment Policy Department, ILO Geneva. He was responsible for leading, coordinating and managing the work of over 40 staff.
Yan held the position of Professor of International Business, School of International Business and Asian Studies, Griffith University, Nathan Campus, Brisbane, Australia from 2003 to 2010, having first joined Griffith in 1989. He is an international development economist educated at Manchester [Bachelor of Arts in Economics, First Class Honours and Richard Cobden Prize Winner], Western Ontario [Master of Arts in Economics], Cambridge [PhD, Economic Development]. Since the mid-1980s, he has worked as an external expert for the ILO and, on some occasions, for the UNDP. He is the author and co-author of more than 100 publications consisting of refereed journal articles, books and edited volumes, book chapters, working papers, policy reports (principally for the ILO) and commentaries in leading on-line journals (voxeu.org and Social Europe Journal). He is one of the founding editors of the Journal of Asia-Pacific Economy [Routledge, London and New York].
Download the "Is there a case for front-loaded fiscal consolidation in Azerbaijan? A growth and employment perspective" research paper (PDF).
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