The International Monetary Fund (IMF) will discuss in August an application by the government of St. Vincent and the Grenadines for US$6.4 million in emergency financing, Prime Minister Ralph Gonsalves has said.
The government applied in May and the IMF was initially scheduled to discuss the application last month.
“I was advised by the Director General of Finance and Planning that the meeting didn’t take place in June as it should have taken place; it will take place in August,” Gonsalves said.
“I fully expect that the money will be approved, but I just want to indicate that. So if anybody following says ‘What happened to that money?’ that is the answer,” Gonsalves further said.
He noted that the monies are “not part of ay fund programme but to get resources in relation to our quota or what we can draw down from our special drawing rights in relation to, for instance, natural disasters”.
Gonsalves, who is also Minister of Finance, said in May that he was requesting emergency financing from the IMF amounting to US$6.4 million.
He is asking for 25 per cent of the nation’s quota under the Rapid Credit Facility, which has a five-year repayment period with three and a quarter years grace period at 1.13 per cent interest.
“The IMF assistance will meet the urgent foreign exchange needs stemming from the disaster and ease the pressure on our balance of payments,” he said in May, referring to the trough system last December, which left EC$330 million (17 per cent of GDP) in loss and damage.