IMF comes to the aid of 19 African countries -Grants them debt relief

IMF comes to the aid of 19 African countries  -Grants them debt relief

Nineteen African countries are set to benefit from a US$500 million Debt Relief approved by the Executive Board of the International Monetary Fund (IMF).

The 19 African countries formed part of the 25 countries who are receiving this relief under the IMF’s revamped Catastrophe Containment and Relief Trust (CCRT).

This is to help them deal with the negative impact of the COVID-19 on their various economies.

 The managing director of the fund, Ms. Kristalina Georgieva announced this in a statement on Monday, April 13.

The African Countries that will benefit include Benin, Burkina Faso, Comoros, Central African Republic, Chad, D.R Congo, and The Gambia.

Others include Guinea, Guinea-Bissau, Liberia, Madagascar, Malawi, and Mali.

The rest are Mozambique, Niger, Rwanda, Sierra Leone, Togo and Sao Tome and Principe.

The other non-African countries to benefit are Afghanistan, Haiti, Nepal, Solomon Islands and Tajikistan.

The managing director of the fund, Ms. Kristalina Georgieva announced this in a statement on Monday, April 13.

“Today, I am pleased to say that our Executive Board approved immediate debt service relief to 25 of the IMF’s member countries under the IMF’s revamped Catastrophe Containment and Relief Trust (CCRT) as part of the Fund’s response to help address the impact of the COVID-19 pandemic,” Kristalina Georgieva said.

 Ms. Georgieva explained in the statement that the grant will allow poor and vulnerable member countries to address their emergency medical and other relief efforts.

"The CCRT can currently provide about US$500 million in grant-based debt service relief, including the recent US$185 million pledge by the U.K. and US$100 million provided by Japan as immediately available resources. Others, including China and the Netherlands, are also stepping forward with important contributions. I urge other donors to help us replenish the Trust’s resources and boost further our ability to provide additional debt service relief for a full two years to our poorest member countries,” Ms. Kristalina Georgieva noted.

Read Also: Ghana gets US$1 billion loan from IMF to fight COVID-19

What are some measures by the IMF to fight COVID-19?

The IMF on April 10 convened a new external advisory group to provide perspectives from around the globe on key developments and policy issues, including policy responses to the exceptional challenges the world now faces due to the novel coronavirus and its economic impact.

“To serve our membership well in this context, we need top-notch input and expertise from the widest range of sources, inside and outside the Fund. Toward this end, I am proud that an exceptional and diverse group of eminent individuals with high-level policy, market, and private sector experience has agreed to serve on my External Advisory Group,” she said.


According to Kristalina Georgieva, the Fund has also secured $1 trillion in lending capacity, serving our members and responding fast to an unprecedented number of emergency financing requests from over 90 countries so far.
The Fund has also outlined a number of economic policies to win the war against the coronavirus.

The IMF Executive Board also approved some changes to the CCRT that expand the qualification criteria to better cover the circumstances created by a global pandemic and to focus on delivering support for the most immediate needs. 

A fundraising exercise was also launched by the Fund to allow for donations of which it was able to accumulate about $1 billion which is being distributed to some vulnerable countries.