IMF cancels Haiti debt
The International Monetary Fund cancelled Haiti's debt and approved a new program to support reconstruction and economic growth following the devestating earthquake in January that killed an estimated 230, 000 people.
The IMF executive board approved the "full cancellation" of Haiti's outstanding liabilities of 268 million dollars and a three-year program to support Haiti's reconstruction and growth drive.
IMF chief Dominique Strauss-Kahn appealed to donor nations to "start delivering on their promises to Haiti quickly so reconstruction can be accelerated, living standards quickly improved, and social tensions soothed."
At a high-level donors' conference in March, the international community pledged 9.9 billion dollars (7.69 billion euros) to Haiti's reconstruction, of which 5.3 billion dollars (4.1 billion euros) are due to be disbursed over the next 18 months.
Resources freed by the IMF debt relief will help Haiti meet substantial balance-of-payments needs exacerbated by the earthquake, the fund said in a statement.
The debt relief is financed by the so called Post-Catastrophe Debt Relief Trust Fund, recently established by the IMF to help very poor countries hit by catastrophic natural disasters.
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