Coronavirus: IMF and its development partners to support member countries

The International Monetary Fund (IMF) says it is working with its development partners to provide support to countries affected by the coronavirus.

The development partners include the World Bank, World Health Organisation, and the Asian Development Bank.

The IMF said it will provide timely policy advice, technical assistance, and financial support to help countries respond to the economic impact of the coronavirus.

The Rapid Credit Facility (RCF) and Rapid Financing Instrument (RFI) provide emergency financial assistance to member countries without the need to have a full-fledged programme in place.

According to the Bretton Wood institution, these loans can be disbursed very quickly to help member countries implement policies that will address emergencies such as the coronavirus.

In 2016 for instance, the IMF provided an RFI emergency loan to Ecuador after it suffered one of the strongest earthquakes in decades.

The IMF indicated that it will continue to provide grants for debt relief to the poorest and most vulnerable countries with outstanding obligations to the Fund to help address disasters, including public health disasters.

This loan facility was used to support Guinea, Liberia, and Sierra Leone during the 2014 Ebola outbreak.

“Given the need to quickly redirect public resources, the IMF will remain closely engaged with the affected member countries and development partners, working as needed to reprioritise capacity development activities”, it emphasised.

This is coming after the IMF said that it will adopt a “virtual format” for next month’s Spring Meetings instead of convening in person in Washington.

The Spring Meeting which is scheduled for April 17-19, 2020 was to bring together government about 10,000 government officials, business people, civil society representatives and journalists from across the globe to a two-block area of downtown Washington that houses their headquarters.

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