The Role of Special Drawing Rights in the International Monetary System
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Publication date: 2015-10-31
GNPJE 2015;279(5):89-118
The article analyzes factors determining the use of special drawing rights (SDRs) as a component of official reserve assets in the international monetary system. The author also examines the possibility of an international monetary system reform based on an increased role for SDRs. The analysis shows that the use of SDRs as a component of official reserve assets is insignificant and likely to remain marginal due to several barriers that make it impossible to transform SDRs into international money. The author identifies two main types of barriers to an increased role of SDRs in the monetary system: barriers related to the specific features of these assets, and barriers stemming from developments in the international monetary system, especially an increased international use of the Chinese currency and the continued status of the U. S. dollar as the dominant international currency. With these constraints in mind, the author concludes that the role of SDRs in the international monetary system is unlikely to increase in the future. The author uses research methods including an analysis of statistical data on official reserve assets and on the international use of national currencies, in addition to a comparative analysis and a study of literature on the subject.
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