‘Don’t Blame IMF for Jamaican Poverty’ – Lagarde

Managing Director of the International Monetary Fund, IMF, Christine Lagarde, says the IMF is not to be blamed for the increase in poverty in Jamaica or recent negative growth.

According to STATIN’s 2015 Survey of Living Conditions, tabled in Parliament last month, poverty has reached its second-highest level in almost two decades. Ms Lagarde was speaking at a press conference at IMF Headquarters this morning.

According to the latest data from the Statistical Institute of Jamaica, STATIN, 21-point-2 percent of the population is now regarded as poor, up from 20 percent in 2014.

The Planning Institute of Jamaica, PIOJ, also reported last week that the economy contracted in the July quarter of this year. But the country continues to pass consecutive IMF tests, earning praise from the institution.

Nationwide News asked Ms. Lagarde about the new data.

Ms. Lagarde is to make her second visit to Jamaica next month for an IMF High Level Caribbean forum. Her last trip was in 2014.

The IMF boss continues to commend Jamaica’s performance under the programme with successive governments.

She says she believes the programme has enough social safety nets to protect the poorest Jamaicans.