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This course provides an overview of public debt management by explaining concepts in a user-friendly language, avoiding mathematics and using simple illustrations and country examples. The objective of the course is to explain in layman's language -- based on UNITAR's considerable past experience and prior trainings -- concepts and techniques of public debt management. Besides overall concepts, this course will provide in-depth understanding of: debt sustainability issues; an appreciation of public debt management in the budgetary context; explain facets of external and domestic public borrowings; and introduce participants to the meaning and implication of contingent liability and risk management. The target audience for this course would include debt managers and students of finance in different parts of the world. Successful completion of the course should equip the participants with conceptual clarity and basic skills leading to improved public debt management practices.
Registration Status: OPEN
Deadline for Enrollment: when slots are full
Course Dates: March 7 to April 22, 2011
Estimated learning time: Minimum of 35 hours
Format: Online/Internet-based (asynchronous)
Language of Instruction: English
Fees: US $ 400/-
Helpline: UNITAR Geneva (Course Administration and Technical Questions)
  Course Objectives and Intended Audience

Since the early 1980s, governments of developing countries and emerging market economies have paid considerable attention to capacity building in external and domestic debt management and sought technical assistance from donor agencies. These projects include significant advisory services and training of the staff engaged in debt management activities, principally in Ministries of Finance and Central Banks. The lessons that are included in this course were developed by the author through participation in debt management technical assistance projects over a period of years. In more recent years the focus of these projects has been on public debt management. The papers provided by the author have been adapted by UNITAR to suit the didactic needs of e-Learning participants.

The course is designed for the staff in Ministries of Finance and Justice, Central Banks, Treasuries, Accountant General's Offices and other agencies involved in public debt management at various stages of the loan cycle. The staff in these agencies will be introduced to many aspects of public debt management. More detailed knowledge of specific areas should be obtained through participation in specialized courses that are offered by training institutes of multilateral agencies, debt management offices in developed countries and other similar agencies.

Public debt management practices in different countries provide useful lessons to debt managers who require them. Often these have to be adapted to the needs of the individual country based on its legal and regulatory framework and existing staff capacity.


Lesson 1: The Need for Public Debt Management
Lesson 2: Loan Cycle

Lesson 3: Functions relating to Public Debt Management
Lesson 4: Institutional Framework for Public Sector Borrowing
Lesson 5: Legal and Regulatory Framework, Issue of Guarantees and On-lending

Lesson 6: Requirements for the Effective Monitoring of Public Debt
Lesson 7: Monitoring Private Non-Guaranteed and Short-term Debt

Lesson 8: Accessing International Capital Markets
Lesson 9: Mobilizing Resources from the Domestic Market and the Pricing of Instruments

Lesson 10: Debt and Vulnerability Indicators and their Critical Values
Lesson 11: Analysis of Public Debt and Debt Indicators
Lesson 12: Formulation of a Borrowing Policy and Strategy

Lesson 13: Risk Management
Lesson 14: Debt Restructuring


This course is designed as an online course in which participants will be primarily responsible for their own learning. Each lesson will consist of the following components:

1) Basic Reading Materials (Compulsory Reading Materials): these materials are intended to educate the participants about the basic concepts and principles applicable to the subject-matter of the lesson. It will include, where appropriate, sample materials. These materials will constitute the required reading materials for the lesson

2) Advanced Reading Materials (Optional Reading Materials): this will consist of optional reading materials for participants who wish to learn more about the topic than what is covered in the lesson.

3) External Links: This will refer the interested participants to additional books, articles, documents, and websites that deal with the issues raised in the lesson.

4) Glossary: A glossary of terms tailored to the online course will be provided to the participants and act as a learning support during the entire course.

5) Quizzes: At the end of each lesson there will be a set of quizzes for participants to answer. These quizzes are designed to test the participant's understanding of the lesson. Participants are required to pass each quiz and obtain at least 80% or more passing grade in order to be eligible for a certificate. All quizzes will need to be taken online.

6) Community Discussion Board: There will be a community discussion board available on which participants can post questions or comments that can be seen by the instructor and the other participants. This discussion board will be moderated by the course director and UNITAR. Structured discussion strings will be posted on a weekly basis.

All successful participants will be eligible to a certificate after completion of this online course.


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