On March 26, the Executive Board of the International Monetary Fund (IMF) completed the seventh review of Haiti’s performance under its program supported by the Extended Credit Facility (ECF) arrangement. Completion of the review will enable an immediate disbursement equivalent to SDR 1.638 million (about US$2.5 million), bringing total disbursements under the program to date to the equivalent of SDR 39.312 million (about US$60.7 million).
The Executive Board also approved requests for waivers of nonobservance of the continuous performance criterion on the contracting or guaranteeing of short-term non-concessional external debt and approved modifications to end-March performance criteria.
Haiti’s ECF arrangement was approved on July 21, 2010 (see Press Release No. 10/299) together with the full relief of the country’s outstanding debt to the Fund of about SDR 178 million (equivalent then to US$268 million).
Following the Executive Board’s discussion on Haiti, Mr. Naoyuki Shinohara, Deputy Managing Director and Acting Chair, said:
“Haiti’s performance under the Fund-supported program has been satisfactory despite difficult circumstances. Reform measures and policies put in place have helped maintain macroeconomic stability and advance structural reforms. Growth has strengthened, headline inflation fell, and gross international reserves remained adequate. However, the overall fiscal deficit widened, reflecting larger-than-programmed investment spending and subsidies to the electricity sector. Progress was also made on reforming public financial management, in particular in the implementation of the Treasury Single Account.
“The program for FY2014 aims at consolidating macroeconomic stability and sustaining progress in structural reforms. These objectives will be supported by continued prudent monetary policy, the stabilization of the overall fiscal balance, and the continuation of structural reforms in the areas of public financial management, international reserve management, and the electricity sector. Advancing these reforms is essential to contain fiscal risks and address continuing vulnerabilities.
“The authorities have adopted a medium-term poverty reduction strategy, with special emphasis on job creation in manufacturing, tourism and agriculture, social inclusion, and improved governance. This would contribute to the establishment of an environment conducive to economic growth and to reducing Haiti’s dependence on foreign assistance.”