Washington, DC: At an Executive Board meeting held today, staff updated Executive Directors on recent developments in Suriname and the authorities’ request for an arrangement under the Extended Fund Facility (EFF).
Ms. Kristalina Georgieva, Managing Director of the IMF, issued the following statement following the meeting:
“Today, Executive Directors were briefed on Suriname’s request for an arrangement under the Extended Fund Facility.
“President Chan Santokhi’s administration inherited a very difficult economic situation. To restore macroeconomic stability, it has undertaken a broad range of policy actions, including delivering on most of the prior actions that were agreed in the staff-level agreement reached in April.
“Over the past several weeks, the Surinamese authorities have made important progress in implementing their home-grown policy plan. They passed a budget in the legislature, with accompanying revenue measures, that will help restore fiscal sustainability; increased spending on social protection programs for the most vulnerable; unified the official and parallel exchange rate; put in place a new monetary policy framework that will help bring down inflation; put an end to monetary financing of the budget; and took steps to significantly improve the targeting of electricity subsidies.
Official and private creditors also have an essential role to play in supporting Suriname’s efforts to put its economy on a better path, tackle its high debt burden, and restore debt sustainability. Hence, financing assurances from Suriname’s various creditors are crucial before the IMF can provide financial support to Suriname. I welcome the continued discussions between the Surinamese authorities and creditors to get these assurances speedily.
“We are committed to working diligently in the coming weeks to ensure that the authorities’ request for an arrangement can be expeditiously presented to the IMF’s Executive Board for its consideration.”
IMF staff and the Surinamese authorities reached an agreement on April 29 for a 36-month Extended Fund Facility with access equivalent to SDR 472.8 million (about US$ 690 million). SeePress Release No. 21/116. The Staff-Level Agreement is subject to Executive Board review, which is pending the completion of the full set of prior actions, the provision of financing assurances on debts owed to official bilateral creditors, and having a credible process in place toward debt restructuring from private creditors.