Managing Director Dominique Strauss-Kahn said November 12 that the IMF has secured sufficient financing pledges from member countries to allow it to provide debt relief to Liberia.
When these pledges, totaling about $842 million, are formalized, a process will be followed of arrears clearance and new IMF financing that will enable the writing off of Liberian debt to the Fund.
Hailing the "breakthrough" in financing, Strauss-Kahn said it represented "a critical step in moving Liberia onto a path toward comprehensive debt relief." He said the IMF would continue to support postconflict recovery in the country, "building on Liberia's many achievements over the past two years."
Strauss-Kahn thanked IMF member countries for "generous support," citing "efforts of many leaders around the world," including low-income countries, in securing the financing. He also acknowledged the roles played by Liberian President Ellen Johnson-Sirleaf and her Page 210 economic team, and World Bank President Robert Zoellick.
Johnson-Sirleaf took office in January 2006, leading a country that was emerging from a 14-year civil war that had ended 3 years earlier. The latest IMF staff report on the country's economy says economic activity remains buoyant, with GDP growth projected at around 8 percent in 2007.
Strauss-Kahn noted that, despite difficult postconflict circumstances, the Liberian government had established an encouraging track record of macroeconomic management and reforms that the IMF has supported...