IMF calls for expansion of debt relief beyond world’s poorest countries

FILE PHOTO: IMF Managing Director Kristalina Georgieva arrives for a conference hosted by the Vatican on economic solidarity
FILE PHOTO: IMF Managing Director Kristalina Georgieva arrives for a conference hosted by the Vatican on economic solidarity, at the Vatican, February 5, 2020. REUTERS/Remo Casilli

November 22, 2020

WASHINGTON (Reuters) – The head of the International Monetary Fund on Sunday called for prompt and effective implementation of a new G20 framework set up to help the world’s poorest countries reach permanent debt relief, but said other countries needed help as well.

“It is critical to operationalize this Framework promptly and effectively,” IMF Managing Director Kristalina Georgieva said in a statement after addressing the leaders of the Group of 20 major economies. “Going forward, we must also help those countries not covered by the Framework to address debt vulnerabilities so that their economies can become more resilient.”

The debt treament framework endorsed by G20 leaders on Sunday applies to 73 countries that are eligible for a temporary freeze in official bilateral debt payments.

(Reporting by Andrea Shalal; Editing by Kevin Liffey)