19:25 GMT31 May 2020
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    WASHINGTON (Sputnik) – The International Monetary Fund (IMF) will provide Honduras $143 million to combat the coronavirus disease (COVID-19) under the current arrangement, the Fund said in a statement on Tuesday.

    “Amid heightened needs for healthcare and social spending to protect the well-being of Hondurans, the authorities will access resources in the amount of SDR104.92 million (US$143 million) currently available under the International Monetary Fund (IMF) SBA/SCF arrangement (Stand-By Arrangement, Stand-By Credit Facility)”, the Fund said.

    Honduras is expected to face significant challenges due to the COVID-19 pandemic, the statement said.

    “Economic activity will be affected by the prudent decision to lock down the economy early in the expansion phase of the virus in order to save lives and contain pressures on the country’s health system”, the IMF said.

    Meanwhile, economic growth will be limited due to the impact of external demand, lower remittances flow and problems in the tourism industry, it added. The IMF expressed confidence that a new agreement will allow Honduras to continue sound macroeconomic policies and support nation’s economy.

    The IMF approved the $312 million arrangement for Honduras in 2019.

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