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World Bank, IMF Call For Suspending Debt Payments Of IDA Countries

The move is aimed at helping IDA countries’ immediate liquidity needs to tackle challenges posed by coronavirus outbreak

WASHINGTON: The World Bank Group and the International Monetary Fund have called upon on all official bilateral creditors to suspend debt payments from IDA countries that request forbearance.

In a joint statement to the G20 concerning debt relief for the poorest countries issued on Wednesday, they said “the coronavirus outbreak is likely to have severe economic and social consequences for IDA countries, home to a quarter of the world’s population and two-thirds of the world’s population living in extreme poverty.

It said “with immediate effect—and consistent with national laws of the creditor countries—the World Bank Group and the International Monetary Fund call on all official bilateral creditors to suspend debt payments from IDA countries that request forbearance. This will help with IDA countries’ immediate liquidity needs to tackle challenges posed by the coronavirus outbreak and allow time for an assessment of the crisis impact and financing needs for each country.”

“With immediate effect—and consistent with national laws of the creditor countries—the World Bank Group and the International Monetary Fund call on all official bilateral creditors to suspend debt payments from IDA countries that request forbearance. This will help with IDA countries’ immediate liquidity needs to tackle challenges posed by the coronavirus outbreak and allow time for an assessment of the crisis impact and financing needs for each country,” it said, adding that “the World Bank Group and the IMF believe it is imperative at this moment to provide a global sense of relief for developing countries as well as a strong signal to financial markets. The international community would welcome G20 support for this Call to Action.”

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