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Zambian gov't says IMF aid package deal not fallen off
From:Xinhua  |  2017-10-21 00:02

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LUSAKA, Oct. 20 (Xinhua) -- Zambian Vice-President Inonge Wina said on Friday that talks for an aid package with the International Monetary Fund (IMF) have not fallen off.

Last week, a Zambian delegation that attended the IMF/World Bank Spring Meetings in Washington D.C. did not hold any talks regarding the aid package as earlier promised, prompting concerns that the talks have fallen off.

The Zambian government had hoped for talks to resume this month and reach a deal by the end of this year for a package believed to be in a region of 1.3 billion U.S. dollars.

But the Zambian vice-president said the talks have not failed and that the IMF was still in consultations with the government.

She said during the vice-president's question and answer session in parliament that the IMF has highlighted a number of concerns which the Ministry of Finance was currently working on and that the talks will soon be concluded.

On Thursday, Finance Minister Felix Mutati also denied that the talks have failed, saying what was before the IMF Board as Article Four which certified Zambia's economic outlook.

He said an IMF team was expected in the country in a few weeks.

Last week, the IMF expressed concern over Zambia's rising public debt, saying it was putting the nation at a high risk of debt distress.

The international financial institution also urged authorities to reign in on public expenditure.