• 27-JUN-2019

  • Washington, DC

  • SOURCE: IMF

IMF Argentina / Egypt / Sri Lanka / Congo

The IMF is actively engaged with both the current government of Argentina as well as the opposition as part of regular outreach to a program country, spokesperson Camilla Andersen told reporters Thursday (June 27) in Washington.
 
Managing Director Christine Lagarde and First Deputy Managaing Director David Lipton will be meeting with Argentine President Mauricio Macri and other officials at the G20 Summit in Osaka, Japan.
 
But IMF officials are also meeting with opposition Presidential Candidate Alberto Fernandez in Buenos Aires Thursday as part of regular stakeholder communications, Andersen said.
 
“The IMF proactively engages with political stakeholders in all countries, but especially in program countries, it's very important for us to reach out to a broad spectrum of political stakeholders to hear their views, and also to understand their overall objectives and key policies, and how they see them under the IMF-supported program,” Andersen said.  
 
The IMF supports a data-dependent approach to managing interest rates and monetary policy in Sri Lanka, Andersen told reporters.
 
“We would note that market conditions in Sri Lanka are normalizing, and indeed on June 24th, the country successfully tapped the international bond market for 2 billion at five- and ten-year maturities, and that issuance was well oversubscribed.”
 
“In response to the specific question on monetary policy, we would say that the Central Bank of Sri Lanka should continue to follow inter dependent approach.  Adjusting policy rates as warranted by evolving macro-economic conditions.”
 
The IMF denied unsubstantiated reports that talks were underway with Egypt for a program. Andersen said the current focus is for the Fund to successfully conclude the current program.
 
“On Egypt we're not currently negotiating a new IMF-supported program, the priority at this junction is to successfully complete the current program.  Discussions regarding the nature of any future engagement would come after that. “
 
“I would also add that as with all our member countries, we stand ready to support Egypt and its people as they continue to the process of transforming the economy enabling it to achieve high-sustained growth that will create jobs and new opportunities.”
 
And in the Republic of Congo, Andersen said that the IMF was unaware of new oil-backed debt being issued by the country, but also that if such a move was taking place it would be counter to its agreement with the African country.
 
“The IMF does not monitor of course all the financial transactions or trading plans of the national oil company.  That said, we are not aware of any new oil back loans that would have an impact on debt sustainability.  And the government has also confirmed that it's disclosing all these loans to the IMF and they have actually also sent the report to parliament to that effect on the nature, the use of these loans.  The program doesn't allow for any new external debt to be contacted by the government,” Andersen said.