IMF managing director Lagarde to visit Romania for the first time mid-July

The managing director of the International Monetary Fund IMF Christine Lagarde (in picture) will arrive in Romania on July 15 for a two-day visit. “In Bucharest, Ms. Lagarde will deliver a speech on Romania and Eastern Europe, focusing on identifying a new growth paradigm for the region,” according to the IMF statement.

After her visit to Bucharest, Lagarde will go to Lithuania for two more days. This is the first visit to these two countries since her appointment as Managing Director of the IMF in July 2011. Lagarde will meet the countries’ respective authorities and policymakers as well as with representatives of the private sector, civil society, and academia to discuss the current economic outlook and the challenges lying ahead in each country.

Romania has passed the seventh and eighth reviews and thus successfully completes the Standby Arrangement with the International Monetary Fund (IMF). However, the expression passed with flying colors would hardly be appropriate. The IMF had to waive some objectives and gave a long list of areas in need of improvement.

Completion of the reviews makes the final chunk of funds available for disbursement, just over EUR 520 million. This takes the total funds made available to Romania under the agreement to just short of EUR 3.6 billion. As throughout the Standby Arrangement, Romania is continuing to use the funds as a precautionary credit line, without drawing on them. The total amount from the IMF and the EU stands at EUR 5 billion.

The IMF waived objectives on net foreign assets of Romania’s central bank (BNR), the general government balance and central government arrears to allow Romania to pass the review. The IMF granted the waivers because of “corrective actions taken by the authorities.”

The completed Standby Arrangement was approved on March 25, 2011, and became effective on March 31, 2011. The agreement was due to finish at the end of March this year, but the IMF gave Romania an extra three months to meet outstanding objectives.

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(photo source: IMF on Flickr)


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