10:35 GMT +317 October 2019
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    The seal of the International Monetary Fund is seen at the headquarters building in Washington, DC on July 5, 2015

    IMF Approves $5.34Bln Financial Assistance Program for Iraq Reforms

    © AFP 2019 / MANDEL NGAN
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    The International Monetary Fund (IMF) Executive Board approved a three-year $5.34 billion Stand-By Arrangement for Iraq to support the government’s economic reforms, the IMF said in a statement.

    WASHINGTON (Sputnik) — The IMF Stand-By Arrangement program allocates financial aid to a member state in need of urgent monetary assistance, usually due to a fiscal crisis.

    "The Iraqi economy has been hit hard by the double shock arising from the ISIS [Daesh] attacks and the sharp drop in global oil prices," IMF Deputy Managing Director and Acting Chair of the Board Min Zhu stated on Thursday. "The policies put in place by the authorities to deal with this double shock are appropriate."

    Iraq’s Stand-By Arrangement-supported economic reform program will seek to balance payments and bring spending in line with lower global oil prices.

    Min emphasized that the Iraqi Central Bank and other state-owned banks must be restructured. Additionally, the Iraqi government needs to strengthen anti-corruption measures and counter terror financing.

    The IMF noted that the international community must support the Iraqi government to implement sound financial policies.

    In July 2015, the IMF granted Iraq $1.2 billion under the Rapid Financing Instrument program.

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