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IMF approves $109m coronavirus loan to Rwanda

The IMF has approved the disbursement of $109.4m to Rwanda to help it deal with the economic fallout of coronavirus.

The support will help to meet Rwanda’s urgent balance of payment needs stemming from the outbreak, according to the Fund.

The funds will help to backstop the decline in international reserves and provide financing to the budget for increased spending aimed at containing the epidemic and mitigating its economic impact.

“The COVID-19 Pandemic has ground Rwanda’s economy to a halt, creating an urgent balance of payments need. To contain and mitigate the spread of the virus, the government swiftly implemented measures that have affected all sectors of the economy. With uncertainties surrounding the duration and spread of the pandemic, the economic fallout could intensify further,” said Tao Zhang, IMF deputy managing director and acting chair of the executive board.

“The IMF emergency support under the Rapid Credit Facility will help with COVID19-related pressures on trade, tourism and foreign exchange reserves, and will provide much-needed resources for health expenditure and for households and firms affected by the crisis. It should also help to catalyze donor support.”

“A temporary widening of the budget deficit is appropriate to mitigate the health and economic impact of the pandemic. Spending should be well-targeted and cost-effective to not crowd-out other priority areas.”

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