Jordan responded quickly to support economy to address COVID-19 impacts: IMF head

[13-04-2021 01:55 AM]

Ammon News -

Managing Director of the International Monetary Fund (IMF), Kristalina Georgieva, said Jordan responded quickly and decisively to support its economy in the wake of the COVID-19 pandemic.

"Timely and targeted fiscal measures have helped protect jobs and the vulnerable (in Jordan)," Georgieva said in a statement, in which she also congratulate His Majesty King Abdullah II and the Jordanian people on the Centenary Anniversary of the founding of the Hashemite Kingdom of Jordan and the holy month of Ramadan.

Following a meeting on Monday with Finance Minister Mohamad Al-Ississ and Governor of the Central Bank of Jordan Ziad Fariz, Georgieva said "equitable tax reforms – aimed at tackling evasion, closing loopholes, and broadening the tax base – have helped maintain debt sustainability. At the same time, a sizable monetary stimulus has supported the recovery, while financial stability and adequate reserve buffers have been preserved."

"I commended them on the strong reform progress made under the IMF-supported program, despite the significant challenges posed by the COVID-19 pandemic," she added.

"Continued efforts to address high unemployment (especially among youth and women), advance electricity sector reforms, boost business competitiveness, and strengthen governance and transparency are needed to deliver durable, jobs-rich and inclusive growth," Georgieva emphasized.

She further added, "The Fund is committed to helping the authorities in these efforts to contain the economic and financial impact of the pandemic and build a stronger and more resilient economy."

On March 30, she noted, the IMF staff and Jordan reached staff-level-agreement on the second review under the Extended Fund Facility, including supporting the authorities’ request for a $200 million augmentation, which would raise Jordan’s access to IMF resources to around $1.95 billion over 2020-24.

"I expect this request will be presented to the IMF’s Executive Board in the near future." she pointed out.

"Robust, timely and scaled-up donor assistance for supporting the authorities’ ambitious reform agenda will be critical to help Jordan protect the lives and livelihoods of its citizens and the large number of refugees it so generously hosts." Georgieva underlined.

"In particular, I want to recognize Jordan’s open vaccination program which provides access to citizens and refugees alike and emphasize the need to help the Jordanian authorities in this vital effort." the IMF chief concluded.

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