The Executive Board of the International Monetary Fund (IMF) on Thursday approved the disbursement of $109.4 million to Rwanda to be drawn under the Rapid Credit Facility (RCF). The money would meet Rwanda’s urgent balance of payment needs stemming from the outbreak of the COVID-19 pandemic.
In a statement received by TODAY NEWS AFRICA in Washington D.C., IMF argued that the economic impact of the COVID-19 pandemic was rapidly unfolding, with the near-term outlook deteriorating quickly in Rwanda.
“The RCF funds will support the authorities’ efforts by backstopping the decline in international reserves and providing financing to the budget for increased spending aimed at containing the epidemic and mitigating its economic impact. This additional IMF financing also ought to help catalyze further assistance from the international community, preferably in the form of grants,” IMF said.
Mr. Tao Zhang, an IMF Deputy Managing Director and Acting Chair, said “the COVID-19 Pandemic has grounded Rwanda’s economy to a halt, creating an urgent balance of payments need. To contain and mitigate the spread of the virus, the government swiftly implemented measures that have affected all sectors of the economy. With uncertainties surrounding the duration and spread of the pandemic, the economic fallout could intensify further.”
“The IMF emergency support under the Rapid Credit Facility will help with COVID19-related pressures on trade, tourism and foreign exchange reserves, and will provide much-needed resources for health expenditure and for households and firms affected by the crisis. It should also help to catalyze donor support.”