Ecuador announces $ 900 mm loan agreement with IMF

Aug 30, 1999 02:00 AM

Ecuador's president announced a $ 900 mm loan agreement with the International Monetary Fund to help revitalise the impoverished nation's sinking economy. President Jamil Mahuad appealed to opposition legislators to back the proposal during a nationally televised address.
"We obtained the official assistance of the IMF for the government's economic and social plan, after many months of effort and negotiations," Mahuad said. But Ecuador can only get the loan, negotiated with an IMF mission, if the opposition-dominated Congress approves the plan.

Mahuad has grappled with a domestic banking crisis, devastating damage from the El Nino weather phenomenon, and sinking world prices of oil, the nation's main export.
Ecuador's public debt of $ 13 bn is expected to total 117 % of its gross domestic product by year's end.
Mahuad also announced the resignation of Finance Minister Ana Lucia Armijos, the principle negotiator in the IMF deal, who has faced consistent criticism from opposition legislators for her handling of Ecuador's fiscal woes. She will be replaced by Guillermo Lasso, director for Bank of Guayaquil, one of the country's 10 largest private banks.

Source: AP via Newspage
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