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IMF says to consider debt relief for Ebola-hit states

SAMAA | - Posted: Nov 13, 2014 | Last Updated: 7 years ago
Posted: Nov 13, 2014 | Last Updated: 7 years ago

WASHINGTON: The International Monetary Fund will discuss debt relief for Guinea, Liberia and Sierra Leone at the Group of 20 leaders meeting in Australia later this week as it considers further support for the countries most affected by the Ebola outbreak, an IMF spokesman said on Thursday.

The United States, the IMF's biggest donor, first proposed the idea of writing off some $100 million in debt owed to the IMF by the three countries to support their economies and free up more money for government spending.

IMF spokesman Bill Murray declined to comment on a specific figure for the debt relief, but said IMF Managing Director Christine Lagarde will discuss this issue with donors at the G20 meetings in Brisbane, Australia.

The IMF provided an additional $130 million to Guinea, Liberia and Sierra Leone in September to help them cope with the economic impact of the deadly Ebola virus. The virus has infected at least 14,098 people, most of them in these three West African countries, and 5,160 have died, according to the World Health Organization. (Reuters)

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