IMF mission arrives in Belgrade

An International Monetary Fund (IMF) mission arrives in Belgrade today to start talks for the fifth review under Serbia’s stand-by arrangement with the IMF.

The IMF mission, headed by Albert Jaeger, is scheduled to stay in Serbia until August 31.

The IMF is scheduled to carry out technical talks by the end of this week, while official talks are scheduled to start on Monday, August 23.

As announced earlier government representatives and the IMF, the talks would focus on the adoption of the law for fiscal responsibility.

Serbian Prime Minister Mirko Cvetković stated earlier that the talks on the fifth review of the arrangement with the IMF would be finalized successfully, just like the previous ones.

On May 15, 2009, the IMF approved a stand-by arrangement loan worth EUR 2.9bn for Serbia, which expires in April 2011.

So far, Serbia has withdrawn a total of about EUR 1.4bn in four tranches to support its foreign reserve, though it drew only 50 percent of the money available under the third review and 15 percent of the fourth loan installment.

Based on the approved but non-purchased funds, the National Bank of Serbia may count on another EUR 507.2mn, most of which may be withdrawn at any time.

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