Simon Ateba is Chief White House Correspondent for Today News Africa. Simon covers the U.S. government, the International Monetary Fund, the World Bank and other financial and international institutions in Washington D.C. He can be reached on [email protected]
The International Monetary Fund on Thursday approved the disbursement of $14.4 million loan money to The Gambia.
The approval came after the IMF Executive Board concluded its second review under the extended credit facility (ECF) arrangement with The Gambia.
The disbursement brings total disbursements under the ECF arrangement to about $50.5 million to The Gambia.
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IMF said The Gambia continues to require assistance due to the coronavirus economic fallout.
It wrote: “The Executive Board of the International Monetary Fund (IMF) today completed the second review under the Extended Credit Facility (ECF) arrangement with The Gambia. The completion of the review enables an immediate disbursement of SDR 10 million, about US$ 14.4 million, to help meet the country’s balance- of-payments and fiscal financing needs as well as support thepost-pandemic recovery.
“This brings total disbursements under the ECF arrangement to SDR 35 million, about US$ 50.5 million. The Executive Board’s decision was taken on a lapse-of-time basis.1 The ECF arrangement with The Gambia was approved by the IMF’s Executive Board on March 23, 2020, with an initial total access of The second wave of the COVID-19 pandemic has dampened economic activity, with attendant socio-economic costs.
“For 2020, economic growth is estimated at zero percent; the tourism sector was hit hard while the agricultural and the construction sectors have shown resilience. For 2021, economic growth is expected to rebound to 4.9 percent, supported by the global and domestic vaccine rollout as well as the continued resilience of some economic sectors.”