IMF to provide US$100 mln to Haiti

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The International Monetary Fund (IMF) announced on Thursday that the Fund will provide 100 million dollars very rapidly in emergency financing to Haiti to assist it in dealing with the aftermath of the massive and devastating earthquake that hit the country Tuesday.

"I have asked staff to look into all the possibilities and am pleased to announce that we are able to make 100 million dollars available very quickly," said the IMF Managing Director Dominique Strauss-Kahn at a news conference.

"We are coordinating with other international agencies to mobilize assistance as quickly as possible in order to help Haiti with the difficult task ahead of rebuilding the country," said the IMF chief. "On behalf of everyone at the IMF, I offer my deepest sympathy to the victims of this tragedy."

The emergency financing would be provided as an augmentation to the existing IMF-supported arrangement with Haiti under the Extended Credit Facility (formerly the Poverty Reduction and Growth Facility).

The 100 million dollars in new funding is subject to approval by the IMF Executive Board, which could consider the augmentation under accelerated procedures.

Since 2006, the IMF has disbursed close to 170 million dollars under its PRGF-supported arrangement.

Haiti received 1.2 billion dollars in debt relief in June 2009, as it reached the completion point under the Enhanced Heavily Indebted Poor Countries Initiative approved by the Executive Boards of the IMF and the World Bank.

Also on Wednesday, the World Bank announced that it will provide an additional 100 million dollars in emergency grant funding to support recovery and reconstruction in the Caribbean nation.

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