Inner City Press

In Other Media-eg New Statesman, AJE, FP, Georgia, NYTAzerbaijan, CSM Click here to contact us     .

These reports are usually available through Google News and on Lexis-Nexis

Share |   

Follow on TWITTER

More: InnerCityPro

Home -

These reports are usually available through Google News and on Lexis-Nexis


(FP Twitterati 100, 2013)

ICP on YouTube
Sept 24, 2013

UN: Sri Lanka


FOIA Finds  

Google, Asked at UN About Censorship, Moved to Censor the Questioner, Sources Say, Blaming UN - Update - Editorial

Support this work by buying this book

Click on cover for secure site orders

also includes "Toxic Credit in the Global Inner City"




Bank Beat

Freedom of Information

How to Contact Us

IMF on Mali Praises Tax Collection As Inner City Press Asks of Corruption UNmentioned

By Matthew Russell Lee, CJR PFT NY Post

NEW YORK CITY, Dec 1 – When the International Monetary Fund held its biweekly embargoed media briefing on November 7, Inner City Press submitted questions including on Sudan and on Equatorial Guinea, see below.

Now on December 2 the IMF on Mali says this: "A team from the International Monetary Fund (IMF), led by Boriana Yontcheva, visited Bamako during November 19-29, 2019, to hold discussions on the first review of the economic and financial program supported by the IMF under the Extended Credit Facility (ECF).     At the end of the discussions, Ms. Yontcheva issued the following statement:     “The Malian authorities and IMF staff have reached a staff-level agreement on the first review of the economic and financial program supported by the IMF under the ECF, subject to approval by IMF management and Executive Board. Consideration by the IMF’s Executive Board is tentatively scheduled for early January 2020.     “Economic growth is expected to reach 5 percent in 2019 and over the medium term, despite the challenging security situation, reflecting some resilience in the economy. The general level of prices entered a deflationary trend in 2019, owing to good harvests following the abundant rainfall.     “The IMF mission and the Malian authorities reviewed the 2019 budget execution and the measures underpinning the draft 2020 budget. The fiscal deficit is expected to meet the West African Economic and Monetary Union (WAEMU)’s convergence criteria of 3 percent of GDP in 2019. Almost all performance criteria and indicative targets for end-September 2019, along with structural benchmarks, were met. Staff welcomed the significant improvement in tax collection. The authorities are committed to continuing their domestic revenue mobilization efforts to create the fiscal space needed to accommodate social, development and security spending while preserving macroeconomic stability and public debt sustainability. In addition to modernizing tax and customs departments, there is a need to accelerate the implementation of reforms geared toward digitalizing tax payments, further streamlining tax exemptions, including those granted to the mining sector, and improving petroleum products and property taxation.     “The IMF staff welcomed the ongoing efforts to reform the energy sector, including the state-owned electricity company’s (EDM.SA) plans to reach cost-recovery over the medium term, while ensuring better supply of electricity to the population.     “To achieve the program objectives for strong and inclusive growth and poverty reduction, the mission encourages the authorities to improve efficiency in public services delivery, including through pursuing reforms to improve governance. The mission also urges the authorities to redouble efforts in repaying domestic spending arrears in a timely fashion and further improving the business climate to foster private sector development and job creation.     “The team would like to thank the authorities, various stakeholders, and technical staff for their support and constructive discussions.”     The team met with the Prime Minister, Head of Government, Minister of Economy and Finance, Dr. Boubou Cissé, the Deputy Minister in Charge of Budget, Mrs. Aoua Sylla Barry; the National Director of the Central Bank of West African States, Mr. Konzo Traoré, senior officials, and development partners." The IMF is part of the UN system, which has largely failed on Mali. We'll have more on this.

On November 7 Inner City Press asked: "On Equatorial Guinea, what is the status (and dollar volume) of the IMF's consideration of a program, and the weighing if at all on the length of time Obiang has been in power? "The loan, the amount of which has not been revealed, is scheduled to be considered by the IMF executive board in December."

 From the IMF's November 7 transcript, with video on page: "There's another question from Matthew, which I'll take on Equatorial Guinea, asking what's the status and the volume of the IMF's consideration of a program for Equatorial Guinea and the weighing, if at all, length of time that President Obiang has been in power. On that, I can say that just recently on October 21st, the Equatorial Guinea authorities and an IMF team reached staff level agreement on a three-year arrangement. Again, under the extended Fund facility, which is the more concessional arm of the IMF's lending. The authorities are working on an agreed set of measures that could allow the new program to be considered by the IMF's Executive Board in December. And Matthew had asked about the volume. We're looking at the program that could be supported by approximately $280 million. So, that's four [sic] Equatorial Guinea.  And anything else in the room?"

On September 26 Spokesperson already then Gerry Rice,  for new Managing Director Kristalina Georgieva, on Turkey said "this is also from Matthew, he has asked ' On Turkey, what is the IMF's response to ruling AKP deputy chair Numan Kurtulmuş criticizing a meeting between IMF & opposition parties, saying Turkey has "closed the topic with the IMF."'

  Then Rice said it is normal to meet with opposition - except in Cameroon, apparently - and that there has been no indication from the Turkish authorities they are looking for a program.

  On September 12 Inner City Press asked the IMF: "On Zimbabwe, please confirm or deny IMF's Patrick Imam saying that "it is clear, compared to the projections of the original SMP, which did not foresee the severity of the drought and its secondary impact, nor the electricity shock, that growth is almost certainly going to be revised downwards and inflation upwards compared to the original SMP forecasts." And what is the IMF's view of the (economic) impact of the crack down on protest and human rights defenders?"

  Spokesperson Gerry Rice said that the IMF team is in Harare, from September 5 to 17. On human rights, he said the IMF "focuses on economics" and that such questions should be directed to... bilateral creditor. At least he didn't say the UN, which doesn't care. Here are Inner City Press' other questions to the IMF:

On Somalia, please provide a read out or response to reports that Somali Minister of Finance Abdirahman Duale Beyle met officials from the IMF  Addis Ababa to discuss the fourth phase of the Somali pardon program.

On Sri Lanka, what is the IMF's response to Independent Expert on foreign debt and human rights, Juan Pablo Bohoslavsky, sayins that in Sri Lanka, there are concerns at the significant rise in the value added tax, given that the brunt of such taxes is often borne by the poorest?

More generally, what is the IMF's response to Bohoslavsky saying as to the IMF that "even though austerity can be a useful tool of administration against the squandering of resources, it is essential to keep in mind that austerity impacts the most vulnerable and marginalised"?

On crypto-currency what is the IMF's response to Marshall Islands Minister David Paul saying the country is moving forward with its plans. According to the post, Minister Paul will provide further details about the Marshall Islands’ crypto, the Sovereign, next week at the Invest: Asia 2019 conference?  Within months, the IMF began putting pressure on the Marshall Islands to not forego the U.S. dollar in favor of its own digital currency. The Fund issued a 58-page report in September 2018 and warned against the "potential costs arising from economic, reputational, AML/CFT, and governance risks" associated with the issuance of the Sovereign.

On the DR Congo, what is the IMF's knowledge of, and comment on, that all the big-name advisory banks are laying siege to the presidential palace in the hope of winning the contract to advise the DRC on its relations with the IMF?" Inner City Press also asked, again, for "any updates on Cameroon or Haiti or Yemen." Watch this site.

More here.


Feedback: Editorial [at]

UN Office: S-303, UN, NY 10017 USA

Reporter's mobile (and weekends): 718-716-3540

 Search  Search WWW (censored?)

Other, earlier Inner City Press are listed here, and some are available in the ProQuest service, and now on Lexis-Nexis.

 Copyright 2006-2019 Inner City Press, Inc. To request reprint or other permission, e-contact Editorial [at] for