Mali to get IMF Extended Credit Facility payout of $5.5 million

With the fourth review of its three-year Extended Credit Facility (ECF) arrangement with the International Monetary Fund (IMF) completed recently, Mali will receive a payout of $5.5 million, bringing the total paid to date from the ECF to about $30 million.

The review was conducted by members of the IMF's Executive Board, who also agreed to a modification of the performance goals attached to the ECF due to Mali's new debt-limits policy, which took effect in June.

The original ECF for Mali was approved in 2013 for $41 million.

"The Malian authorities have continued to take necessary steps to ensure that the goals established under their fund-supported program are achieved," David Lipton, deputy managing director and acting chairman of the IMF Executive Board, said. "Program performance through June was solid, enabling the authorities to strengthen their fiscal program for 2015. The program for 2016 allows for a somewhat higher, but still moderate, fiscal deficit to accommodate increased capital spending and reconstruction needs. This is expected to be accompanied by continued robust GDP (gross domestic product) growth, although the challenging security situation represents a risk to the economic outlook."

In its report, the executive board said capital coming into the country, along with payments from direct foreign investments, should make Mali able to pay any deficits and maybe even start building its international reserve.

"Fiscal decentralization should help improve accountability over public spending and provide increased support to Mali’s less-favored regions," Lipton said. "It is important that this is implemented gradually and that adequate transparency and accountability mechanisms are put in place to help ensure that resources transferred to local governments are well-used."

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