No Relaxation of IMF Conditionalities

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Jamaica has passed the ninth consecutive test under the four year Extended Fund Facility agreement with the IMF.

All targets were met, including the 7.5% primary surplus target which the government missed in its last review.

Once the IMF’s Executive Board approves the review in September, Jamaica will be able to draw down another USD$40-million from the fund.

It was one of the most highly anticipated IMF reviews under the current agreement.

That’s because of the recent buyback of the Petrocaribe debt, which Finance Minister, Dr. Peter Phillips described as a game changer.

Head of the IMF Mission to Jamaica, Dr. Uma Ramakrishnan, says the development is welcome.

However, Dr. Ramakrishnan did not announce any change in the conditions under the programme.

There were hopes that the economic benefits of the Petrocaribe deal would compel the IMF to reconsider some of their targets.

Some might say it’s too early to make any adjustments based on the Petrocaribe debt deal, as the full implications have not yet been felt.

And the Finance Minister makes this point.

Dr. Phillips is keen to remind the public that it will take a lot more work for the country to be ‘out of the woods’.

There are still seven tests remaining under the IMF programme.