Govt begins discussions with int’l monetary bodies | Daily News


Govt begins discussions with int’l monetary bodies

Eran Wickremaratne, State Minister Finance
Eran Wickremaratne, State Minister Finance

The government has begun discussions with the IMF, JAIC, Millennium Challenge Cooperation and other monetary bodies to obtain the normal services again.

During the recent political impasse key monetary bodies halted its disbursements to the country.

Eran Wickremaratne, State Minister Finance, said discussions has begun on a preliminary stage with all Sri Lanka’s international partners who lend money to the country. The State Minister expressed hope that with the dialogue resumed, aid agencies normal service will start again soon.

The Minister said they have indicated to international lending agencies including the International Monetary Fund (IMF) and the others that the government will continue discussions with them commencing soon after the holiday season in financial markets and will take the process forward. The IMF during the political impasse put on hold discussions around the next tranche of the USD $1.5 billion loan to Sri Lanka. Though Sri Lanka has received over USD $1 billion so far, it was expected to receive a sixth tranche of approximately USD 250 million, with the total loan installments completed by mid-2019. Also affected was the loan pledged by the Japan International Cooperation Agency (JICA) which was to give Sri Lanka US$ 1.7 billion on very concessionary terms and also the Millennium Challenge Cooperation grant of USD 480 million to Sri Lanka to be utilized on several development projects.

The agreement between the Government and the Millennium Challenge Cooperation for the grant of USD 480 million was scheduled to be signed in December in Colombo. JICA had agreed to provide a US$ 1.7 billion loan at 0.1 percent interest with a 40-year repayment term with 12 year grace period for a light rail project in Sri Lanka.

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