- The International Monetary Fund (IMF) is to start negotiations with Angola next month to discuss possibilities to help the southern African state weather the impact of the global recession.
The agreement follows a visit by the IMF mission this week to Luanda, led by Lamin Leigh, the IMF Mission Chief for Angola.
“At the end of the discussions, the authorities and the IMF staff agreed that the mission should return to Luanda in September 2009 to conduct program negotiations with a view to pave the way for the IMF to help Angola weather the impact of the global slowdown on its economy,” Mr Leigh said in a press statement following the completioin of the visit.
The mission was at the request of the Angolan authorities, with the purpose to appraise the current economic situation in Angola following the onset of the financial crisis last year.
“The mission held productive discussions with the economic team of the government, financial institutions and key donors. Angola is facing a challenging economic situation in 2009 as a result of the global economic crisis," said Mr Leigh also adding that the country has already approved a supplementary budget for 2009 which tightens the fiscal stance and that the National Bank of Angola (BNA) has also taken monetary policy actions, which together have helped stabilise net international reserves.
Angola has emerged as a major oil producer in the continent while also in its rebuilding stages after decades of civil war.
Meanwhile, the Executive Board of the IMF also on Friday completed the fifth review of The Gambia’s economic performance under the three-year Poverty Reduction and Growth Facility (PRGF) arrangement.
The completion of the review enables The Gambia to draw immediately an amount of US$8 million from the IMF bringing total disbursements to about US$28.6 million.
The Executive Board also granted a waiver for the nonobservance of an end-March 2009 structural performance criterion to make the credit reference bureau operational.
The Gambia's PRGF arrangement became effective 21 February, 2007, for a total amount of US$22 million . The fourth review was completed on 18 February this year, with the decision on the fifth review taken on a lapse of time basis, according to the IMF.
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