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IMF deems new program for Belarus advisable

MINSK, 3 May (BelTA) – The International Monetary Fund (IMF) believes it is advisable to launch a new program for Belarus, Nadezhda Yermakova, Chairwoman of the Board of the National Bank of Belarus, told media on 3 May.

“We confirm, both the government and the National Bank, our application filed in May 2011 that states we would like to work with the IMF in line with a new program. A while ago we informed various departments and top executives, including IMF, about the situation in Belarus, including the financial system and the results we have achieved. We have held top level meetings with World Bank executives, too. Both IMF and those we have met with show profound respect for what Belarus has done in the last six months and what results Belarus has achieved. It was said they would support us when the decision on Belarus is made. The IMF believes it is necessary to work with Belarus in line with a new program,” said the NBRB head.

Yet the launch of the new program has to do a lot with politics, added Nadezhda Yermakova. “It is possible that not everyone from the European Union will support us but we hope that common sense will prevail. We don’t need IMF money as an extra loan or a loan to refinance the debt as much as we need technical aid. We need wise advice to deal with issues, to reach goals. It is more important for us,” said Nadezhda Yermakova. The fact that the International Monetary Fund and the World Bank work with Belarus is very important for raising the country’s position in various ratings among other things.

The NBRB head is confident that Belarus will be able to settle the existing $3.5 billion debt to the IMF without launching a new program and without extra loans from the IMF. “Even if we don’t get loans, we will be able to repay the debt, we have every capability to do that,” remarked Nadezhda Yermakova.

New export-oriented enterprises are being set up in Belarus. “If we make quality products and export them, we will need no external investments or loans. We, the Belarusians, will be able to do everything on our own, I am confident in it,” stressed the official.

Nadezhda Yermakova also touched upon cooperation with the EurAsEC Anticrisis Fund. She remarked that Belarus expects to get two more tranches of the loan this year.