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Interactive December 6, 2017

A Cross-Country Database of Fiscal Space

The World Bank’s Development Prospects Group has constructed a comprehensive cross-country database of fiscal space. The database covers up to 200 countries over the period 1990-2016, and includes 28 indicators of fiscal space grouped into four categories:

  • Government debt sustainability
  • Balance sheet composition
  • External and private sector debt
  • Market access

The working paper, prepared by M. Ayhan Kose, Sergio Kurlat, Franziska Ohnsorge, and Naotaka Sugawara, provides detailed information on the database and shows potential applications of the database by analyzing developments across three time frames: over the past quarter century, during financial crises, and during oil price plunges.

Data Table and Download

Indicators can be easily compared across countries in specific country groups using the following table. The database is also available for download in Excel and Stata in the interface.


* For detailed information on sources and construction of variables, refer to Kose et al. (2017).
* The classification by income group is as done by the World Bank as of June 2017.
* Indicators related to sustainability gaps are available from the authors upon request.
* In the groups of balance sheet composition and external and private sector debt, some variables might not represent data for the entire year (e.g., data are only as of Q3), due to the timing of data release, especially in the most recent year in the database. Refer to the Excel file for the further information. Country-specific notes are also included in the Excel file.


When using the database, please cite the following paper as the data source:

Kose, M. Ayhan, Sergio Kurlat, Franziska Ohnsorge, and Naotaka Sugawara (2017). "A Cross-Country Database of Fiscal Space." Policy Research Working Paper 8157, World Bank, Washington, DC.


For more information, please contact Ayhan Kose (, Franziska Ohnsorge (, and Naotaka Sugawara (