To finalise $4.5b loan, top IMF official due in…
Deputy Managing Director of the International Monetary Fund (IMF) Antoinette Monsio Sayeh will arrive in Dhaka on 14 January as the $4.5 billion loan agreement will be finalised during her visit, according to finance ministry officials.
During her five-day visit, Sayeh will review the current financial condition of the country and assess the rationale of the loan programme, the officials said.
The top IMF official will meet Prime Minister Sheikh Hasina, Finance Minister AHM Mustafa Kamal, Bangladesh Bank Governor Abdur Rauf Talukder, Finance Secretary Fatima Yasmin, and Economic Relations Department Secretary Sharifa Khan, according to Finance Division sources.
In the face of a fast-depleting forex reserve, Bangladesh sought the loan from the IMF in July 2022.
A team led by Governor Abdur Rauf Talukder met with the IMF on the side-lines of the World Bank-IMF annual meeting in Washington in October last year. After the meeting, the governor told reporters that Bangladesh will get a loan from the IMF.
Then, an IMF team made a visit to Dhaka on 26 October-9 November 2022. Following the staff-level talks, the government reached a preliminary agreement on the IMF loan programme.
After the staff-level visit, IMF Bangladesh Mission Chief Rahul Anand said Bangladesh may get the loan. Finance Minister AHM Mustafa Kamal was also positive about getting the loan.
Finance Division officials said the next IMF board meeting on 29 January will discuss and decide on Bangladesh’s loan proposal. After her visit to Dhaka, Sayeh will present the current financial situation of Bangladesh and the rationale for lending to the meeting.
During her Dhaka visit, a draft of the loan agreement will be sent to the IMF Washington headquarters under the joint signature of Finance Minister AHM Mustafa Kamal and Bangladesh Bank Governor Abdur Rauf Talukder.
After the final agreement, the first instalment of the loan amounting to around $45.45 crore will be available in the first week of February. The last instalment of the loan in seven portions will be released in December 2026.
The average interest rate on the loan will be 2.2%.