Mi­nis­ter Hoef­draad cla­ri­fies agree­ments with IMF

Times of Suriname - - ENGELS -

“The Su­ri­na­me­se au­tho­ri­ties and the In­ter­na­ti­o­nal Mo­ne­ta­ry Fund (IMF) ha­ve no other con­cre­te agree­ments with re­gards to the exe­cu­ti­on of the Sta­bi­li­ty and Re­co­ve­ry Plan,” said Fi­nan­ce Mi­nis­ter Gill­m­o­re Hoef­draad in a press re­lea­se. “The govern­ment is bu­sy exe­cu­ting the pro­gram and is well on track,” said Mi­nis­ter Hoef­draad who ad­ded that the re­cent vi­sit from a team from the IMF was a rou­ti­ne Ar­ti­cle IV mis­si­on ai­med at in­ves­ti­ga­ting the eco­no­mic de­vel­op­ments and pro­spects in ge­ne­ral. The mi­nis­ter poin­ted out that the au­tho­ri­ties ha­ve ex­plai­ned to the IMF team that the pro­jec­ted drop in eco­no­mic growth was too low and that the pro­jec­ti­ons should be re­vi­sed. If it be­co­mes clear in a la­ter pha­se that the pro­jec­ted fi­gu­re was too low, the IMF must ad­mit that it was wrong and the pro­po­sed me­a­su­res should be pro­gram­med again. The au­tho­ri­ties ex­plai­ned to the IMF that the coun­try’s eco­no­my would risk en­ding up in a dee­per re­ces­si­on. “The Su­ri­na­me­se pro­gram has de­li­ve­r­ed re­sults in cru­ci­al are­as which the govern­ment deems as a pri­o­ri­ty to ba­lan­ce the eco­no­my and to en­cou­ra­ge eco­no­mic growth. The­se are: stron­gly pus­hing back the bud­get de­fi­cit, buil­ding up the mo­ne­ta­ry re­ser­ves, li­be­ra­ting the ex­chan­ge ra­te, im­pro­ving the so­ci­al cus­hi­on and pre­pa­ring le­gis­la­ti­ve re­forms and in­sti­tu­ti­o­nal streng­the­ning,” said Mi­nis­ter Hoef­draad who ad­ded that the au­tho­ri­ties we­re sur­pri­sed to hear that the IMF team had pre­sen­ted a very tech­ni­cal de­fi­ni­ti­on of in­ter­na­ti­o­nal re­ser­ves to jour­na­lists and le­gis­la­tors.

Ac­cor­ding to the IMF team, Su­ri­na­me only has en­ough in­ter­na­ti­o­nal re­ser­ves to co­ver 1 month of im­ports. The mi­nis­ter ex­plai­ned that the in­ter­na­ti­o­nal re­ser­ves ha­ve in fact been boosted. “At the end of Oc­to­ber the re­ser­ves which we­re pu­blis­hed by the Cen­tral Bank of Su­ri­na­me (CB­vS) and which ha­ve been check­ed by the tech­ni­cal as­sis­tan­ce mis­si­ons of the IMF we­re $371 mil­li­on. The­se in­ter­na­ti­o­nal re­ser­ves we­re in li­ne with the de­fi­ni­ti­ons that the IMF al­ways uti­li­zes. The Cen­tral Bank is bu­sy re­buil­ding the in­ter­na­ti­o­nal re­ser­ves stea­di­ly. The dwind­ling im­ports which gi­ve a much mo­re re­a­lis­tic image of our im­port needs in­di­ca­te a im­port co­ver­a­ge of about 4.5 months,” said Mi­nis­ter Hoef­draad. He poin­ted out that the IMF team did not sha­re its cal­cu­la­ti­ons and ma­cro charts with the govern­ment which is high­ly unu­su­al du­ring a Ar­ti­cle IV mis­si­on. Mi­nis­ter Hoef­draad ma­de it clear that the govern­ment and the IMF are on the sa­me pa­ge on ma­ny points but that they al­so ha­ve a serious dif­fe­ren­ce of opi­ni­on on ma­ny things.

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