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Deals and Investment - Finance - Profiles - April 29, 2019

IMF Will No Longer Lend to Sudan – Official

The International Monetary Fund (IMF) has said that it will no longer provide additional financing lending to Sudan because of the country’s unpaid arrears, a senior IMF official has said.

Director of the IMF’s Middle East and Central Asia Department, Jihad Azour, told Reuters on Monday that though Sudan’s Transitional Military Council had not approached the IMF about the country’s debt, the financial body will not grant the Northeast African country.

“We have been engaged with Sudan, we provide them (Sudan authorities) with technical assistance and policy support,” Azour said.

“We cannot provide them with financing because they are still incurring arrears, and until they address this arrear issue, in our bylaws, we cannot provide them with additional lending.

An overhaul of Sudan’s debt is “too premature”, said Azour, “because this would require the removal of the sanctions. Technically it is not something that you can achieve now.”

Sudan’s Transitional Military Council is in talks with opposition groups on the formation of a joint body to lead a transition from 30 years of autocratic rule by Omar al-Bashir.

It ousted and arrested al-Bashir after months of protests.

The IMF in late 2017 estimated Sudan’s arrears to the fund to be $1.3 billion this year, out of a total external debt estimated at $59 billion.

The United States imposed a range of sanctions on Sudan, first over Khartoum’s perceived support for militants, later its violent suppression of rebels in Darfur.

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