• SOURCE: IMF

IMF Bi-Weekly Briefing

ID

463936

Description
The IMF is pleased with the result of negotiations with the Eurogroup over how to proceed on the Greek bailout and announced that a mission to Athens will proceed next week, Fund spokesman Gerry Rice told reporters Thursday (February 23) in Washington. “I think the good news is that the mission is going back, the good news is there's going to be the discussions, and we have to let those discussions play out,” Rice said. IMF Managing Director Christine Lagarde met with German Chancellor Angela Merkel in Berlin and those talks were wide-ranging and productive, the IMF said. Among the topics was an agreement that welcomed the Greek authorities decision to invite teams back to Athens to resume program discussions and make progress on the second review of the ESM Program. “And I think everyone is entering into these discussions with the best will possible to try and do what is in the best interest of Greece and the Greek people,” Rice added while saying that the final form of additional aid to Athens is still to be determined and will need to be contingent on the “two legs” of policies and debt relief. Lagarde also spoke with incoming US Treasury Secretary Stephen Mnuchin this week by phone, where one topic of discussion was China’s currency policies. The IMF conducts annual surveys of members exchange rate policies as a core mission, Rice said. “In the latest ESR, the External Sector Report, and Article IV consultation with China, we assessed that China’s currency was broadly in line with fundamentals, and as usual, an updated assessment of China’s exchange rate will be forthcoming in the summer of this year as part of the next ESR and Article IV consultation with China,” he said. And Nigeria has not asked for a debt-relief program from the IMF at this point, Rice told reporters. But the Fund urges Nigeria to step up economic reforms and warned that the “window for bold reforms is closing.” “The Fund continues to provide technical assistance and have a productive dialogue with the authorities, and we stand ready to help should the country make a request for financial assistance,” Rice said.
Shotlist
Washington, DC – Recent 1. B-ROLL: Exterior IMF Washington, DC --- 23 February 2017 2. Walk-up Newsconference 3. Reporters cutaway 4. SOUNDBITE: (English) Gerry Rice, IMF Spokesman: “I think the good news is the progress that was made this week. I think the good news is that the mission is going back, the good news is there's going to be the discussions, and we have to let those discussions play out. And I think everyone is entering into these discussions with the best will possible to try and do, you know, what is in the best interest of Greece and the Greek people. I think everyone shares that same commitment, and that means trying to do it as quickly as possible and with as little delay as possible.” 5. Cutaway Reporters 6. SOUNDBITE: (English) Gerry Rice, IMF Spokesman: “In the latest ESR, the External Sector Report, and Article IV consultation with China, we assessed that China’s currency was broadly in line with fundamentals, and as usual, an updated assessment of China’s exchange rate will be forthcoming in the summer of this year as part of the next ESR and Article IV consultation with China.” 7. Cutaway Reporter 8. SOUNDBITE: (English): Gerry Rice, IMF Spokesman: “The Nigerian authorities have not approached the IMF for a program, have not. As such, there are no discussions or negotiations going on regarding a program with Nigeria. However, and again, as we have said before, the Fund continues to provide technical assistance and have a productive dialogue with the authorities, and we stand ready to help should the country make a request for financial assistance.” 9. Reporters Cutaway 10. Gerry Rice midshot Washington, DC – Recent 11. B-ROLL: Exterior IMF
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