LatinNews Daily - 31 August 2023

In brief: IMF approves new SMP with Haiti

*The International Monetary Fund (IMF) has approved a new nine-month Staff-Monitored Programme (SMP), an informal agreement between national authorities and IMF staff, with Haiti. According to the IMF, the SMP builds on progress achieved under the previous SMP, which was satisfactorily concluded in May 2023, and “should contribute to macroeconomic stability by helping Haiti sustain recent policy reforms designed to enhance economic resilience and governance”. SMPs are not accompanied by IMF financial assistance. An IMF statement highlights that “Haiti faces a challenging macroeconomic outlook amid a dire humanitarian crisis. The country has been hit hard by economic spillovers from Russia’s invasion of Ukraine, including food price inflation that has triggered a hunger crisis. This global shock has been compounded by a highly volatile security situation in Haiti, which has heightened the economy’s fragility.” However, it states that “despite the very challenging environment, signs of resilience have emerged”, noting that “net international reserves have been rebuilt, although from a low base; custom duties helped boost fiscal revenue by 50% in the first six months of the fiscal year of 2023 starting in October 2022, monetary financing of the budget has declined; and the exchange rate has recently stabilised.

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