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IMF Delays Mali Review on IBK's Plane Purchase As France Silent at UN

By Matthew Russell Lee

UNITED NATIONS, May 22 -- Amid questions to the International Monetary Fund about Ukraine and Greece, Inner City Press on May 22 submittted questions about Yemen, the Balkans and this one on Mali:

On Mali and the president's new $40 million plane and the state guarantee for a loan to provide supplies for the army, the country's information minister says clarification was provided to the Managing Director in April. Is that true and who will the IMF's Malian program proceed?”

During the briefing, IMF spokesperson Gerry Rice replied that “the IMF is concerned about the quality of recent decisions” including the purchase of the plane and the state guarantee.

Rice said Mali has been contacted, but that getting satisfactory information and reassurance will take time. It will delay the first review of Mali's arrangement with the IMF, initially planned for June.

  This is the government which France, for example, is propping up while refusing to take questions about the president's plane (and non-negotiation with the MNLA), at least at the UN. But this is the IMF position.

  Rice said there are no new major developments on Ukraine; the IMF mission is set to be in Kiev in the last week of June, first week of July.

  The impact of Russia's new $400 billion gas deal with China is being analyzed. And, Rice said, criticism has made the IMF pay more attention to inequality -- and apparently to leaders pampering themselves while their people suffer, as in Mali. Watch this site.

Update: after the embargo time, this answer was provided on Yemen by the IMF, we appreciate it and publish it:

Inner City Press question: Yemen's Finance Minister said the country will reduce fuel subsides to get a $500M IMF program, hoped to be concluded by end of May. What is the status, and what about fuel shortages and impacted Yemenis?

IMF spokesperson response: A mission is discussing with the authorities their economic reform program and how the IMF can support them.


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