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IMF members commit US$340 bn in bilateral borrowing

WT24 Desk

Twenty-five members of the International Monetary Fund (IMF) have committed a total of SDR 243 billion (US$340 billion) in bilateral borrowed resources with maximum terms through end-2020, News Agencies report.

In welcoming these commitments, Christine Lagarde, IMF Managing Director, said: “These commitments will preserve the overall lending capacity of the IMF and provide confidence that the Fund will continue to address the needs of our membership.”

Access to the bilateral borrowing will be governed by a new framework approved by the IMF’s Executive Board in August 2016 that will replace the framework agreed in 2012 when, in response to the global financial crisis, the membership decided to supplement IMF resources through bilateral borrowing agreements, said an IMF release on Friday.

There are currently 35 agreements with creditors under the 2012 Borrowing Agreements for a total of SDR 282 billion or US$393 billion.

These agreements, set to expire starting October 12, have not been drawn but have played a critical role as a third line of defense, after quotas and the New Arrangements to Borrow (NAB), in providing assurance to members and markets that the IMF has adequate resources to meet potential needs.

The new framework retains key modalities of the existing borrowing framework and includes a new multilateral voting structure that gives creditors a formal say in any future activation of the bilateral borrowing agreements.

The new agreements will have a common maximum term of end-2020, with an initial term to end-2019 extendable for a further year with creditors’ consents.

The agreements under the new framework will continue to serve as a third line of defense after quotas and the NAB.   Agreements under the new framework will be submitted to the Executive Board for approval once they are concluded.

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