Tuesday, June 6, 2023
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IMF confirms discussions on expanding emergency aid for food shocks

by Andrea Shalal

WASHINGTON (Reuters) – The International Monetary Fund (IMF) confirmed on Tuesday it was considering expanding its lending toolkit to help countries hit by the food crisis, including Through a new “food shock window” that will provide emergency funding.

The plan, first reported by Reuters on Monday, would allow the International Monetary Fund to increase funding to funds struggling with balance-of-payments problems stemming from a food crisis triggered by Russia’s war with Ukraine and global inflation. State loans. COVID-19 Pandemic.

Members of the IMF Executive Board reviewed the proposal at an informal meeting on Monday.

IMF spokesman Gerry Rice said the fund has provided more than 93 countries to 93 countries since the start of the pandemic billion dollar loan, is using all available tools to support its members, and is looking into “all options to enhance our toolkit, including helping countries affected by food crises.”

In a statement to Reuters, he said the board had just begun informal discussions on “a proposal to create a new food shock window under our emergency financing arrangement.”

He It said further discussions with the executive committee are planned to ensure the changes are formally approved.

Rice says the fund provides $50 billions of dollars to 19 low-income countries , and continues to encourage its member states to “seek from us the financial support we need as early as possible.”

The proposal discussed on Monday would temporarily increase existing access restrictions and allow all member states to The IMF’s Rapid Financing Facility, which borrows an additional 50 percent of its IMF quota, allows low-income countries to tap the Rapid Credit facility, sources familiar with the program said.

Board members generally support attending the meeting and may formally vote for the measure ahead of the fund’s annual meeting in October, they said.

Food prices – already hit by inflation – after the start of the Ukrainian war, global surges due to blocked supply routes and sanctions, etc. er trade restrictions, despite A UN-brokered deal last month that allowed food exports to resume from Ukrainian ports has helped improve trade flows and lower prices in recent weeks.

Many African countries and other poor countries suffering from food shortages and acute hunger have requested increased funding, but it is unclear how many will seek additional financial assistance.



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