Joint BIS-IMF-OECD-World Bank statistics on external debt

15 June 1999

Press release

The BIS, the IMF, the OECD and the World Bank are jointly publishing today the second of a new series of quarterly releases of statistics on the external debt of 176 developing and transition countries, which also includes data on international reserves. The publication is available at:

http://www.bis.org/publ/

and is also accessible through each agency's website. From 5 July 1999, longer time series will be available via an online database.

The latest release incorporates the most recent statistics collected by the contributing institutions, which are obtained mostly from creditor and market sources. Although the data do not provide a completely comprehensive and consistent measure of total external debt in each country, they bring together the best international comparative data currently available in this area.

The coverage, definitions and limitations are explained in a methodological note on the website. The figures cover essentially all countries and territories on the list of aid recipients of the Development Assistance Committee of the OECD, including practically all non-OECD countries, as well as the Czech Republic, Hungary, Korea, Mexico, Poland and Turkey. Data for offshore financial centres are separately distinguished.

This publication is part of an evolutionary process. The contributing institutions are currently working on improving the comprehensiveness, quality and timeliness of the statistics.