IMF suspends its engagement with Afghanistan

WION Web Team
NEW DELHI Published: Sep 17, 2021, 10:41 AM(IST)

File photo: IMF Photograph:( AFP )

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During a news conference, IMF spokesperson Gerry Rice told reporters, "Our engagement with Afghanistan has been suspended until there is clarity within the international community on the recognition of the government"

The International Monetary Fund (IMF) has said its engagement with Afghanistan will remain suspended until there is clarity within the international community on the recognition of the government led by the Taliban.

The organisation said that it was deeply concerned about the economic conditions in Afghanistan as it urged the international community to take urgent steps to stall a “looming humanitarian crisis” in the country.

During a news conference, IMF spokesperson Gerry Rice told reporters, "Our engagement with Afghanistan has been suspended until there is clarity within the international community on the recognition of the government".

“We’re guided by the international community in terms of the recognition of the government in Afghanistan and we don’t have that. So, the IMF programme there has been put on hold; and, again, as we said, last month, the country cannot access IMF resources, SDRs, and so on, at this point".

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Afghanistan had already been facing chronic poverty and drought but the situation has deteriorated since the Taliban seized power with the disruption of aid, the departure of tens of thousands of people including government and aid workers, and the collapse of much economic activity.

Foreign donors have suspended aid to Afghanistan. Ordinary bank transfers to individuals in Afghanistan have also been blocked. 

However, as per Rice, the IMF stands ready to work with the international community to advocate for urgent actions to stall a looming humanitarian crisis. 

The IMF is deeply concerned with the difficult economic situation in Afghanistan and the humanitarian situation in Afghanistan.

“We have said the immediate focus should indeed be on that humanitarian situation, aid to help the Afghanistan people; and allowing the flow of remittances and small-scale transfers; and providing assistance to countries hosting Afghan refugees,” he said.

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