Middle East countries hit hard by the slump in the price of oil will have to raise taxes in order to recover and prosper, the head of the International Monetary Fund (IMF) believes.
In a preview of a speech to be delivered at the Arab Fiscal Forum on Monday, IMF Managing Director Christine Lagarde will say that that successful 21st century economies had to be able to both generate “robust government revenue” and “higher and more reliable revenue.”
Due to speak in oil-rich emirate Abu Dhabi, Lagarde’s speech will focus on those Middle Eastern oil exporting countries that are seeing widening budget deficits as a result of the sharp plunge in oil prices since mid-2014.
Lagarde will state on Monday that while “oil-exporting countries are adapting to a new reality of low commodity prices” and that “revenue mobilization” was needed around the world, but especially in the Middle East and North Africa, regions which have relied on oil for government revenues.
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