Sun, Dec 15, 2013 - Page 6 News List

Ireland gets final IMF payout as it exits its rescue

AFP, WASHINGTON

The IMF approved the 12th and last review of Ireland’s progress under its three-year rescue program on Friday, allowing a final US$890 million in support of its financial rebuilding.

“Owing to steadfast policy implementation by the authorities, the EU-IMF supported program has been completed successfully,” the IMF said. “Ireland has pulled back from an exceptionally deep banking crisis, significantly improved its fiscal position and regained its access to the international financial markets.”

The IMF took part with the European Commission, Denmark, Sweden and Britain in the 85 billion euro (US$117 billion) rescue of the country, which aimed to head off a deep balance of payments crisis as the country along with many others across Europe struggled.

“Ireland is now in a much stronger position than when its program began,” IMF managing director Christine Lagarde said. “Yet Ireland still faces significant economic challenges. Unemployment is too high, public debt sustainability remains fragile and heavy private sector debts and banks’ slow progress in resolving nonperforming loans weigh on domestic demand. Continued concerted policy implementation is therefore necessary for Ireland to recover fully from the crisis.”

Lagarde welcomed the government’s decision to shun a successor program.

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