Sri Lanka counts on India for more aid until IMF funding approved

“IMF staff will continue to monitor the economic and political situation very closely and will engage with the authorities to formulate concrete measures under an IMF-supported program, as well as with broader stakeholders to support a rapid resolution of the crisis,” the IMF said.

Sri Lanka’s High Commissioner to India, Milinda Moragoda met with Union Finance Minister, Nirmala Sitharaman on Friday (27 May). Photo: Twitter/Sri Lanka High Commission in India

Sri Lanka’s High Commissioner to India Milinda Moragoda met with Union Finance Minister Nirmala Sitharaman to assess the state of ongoing economic cooperation and discuss the way forward as the island nation is in the grip of its worst economic crisis.

According to reports, Moragoda, during the meeting with Sitharaman on Friday May 27, reiterated that Sri Lanka would need bridge financing until the International Monetary Fund (IMF) program is finalized and approved.

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“Following his meeting in mid-April, High Commissioner @MilindaMoragoda met again with Indian Minister of Finance and Commercial Affairs @nsitharaman today (27) to assess the state of economic cooperation in course and discuss the way forward. #lka (sic),” the official Twitter account of the Sri Lankan High Commission in India posted along with a photo of the meeting.

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“In this context, the Minister and the High Commissioner explored the possibility of increasing and restructuring the assistance provided by India in the form of credits for essential goods and fuel, as well as support for balance of payments,” the high commission said. his Facebook page.

Last month, India extended an additional $500 million line of credit to Sri Lanka.

On Thursday, May 26, the IMF said it conducted a virtual mission with Sri Lankan authorities from May 9-24 on an economic program that could be supported by an IMF loan agreement.

Read also : Crisis-hit Sri Lanka lifts state of emergency

In a statement, the IMF said: “Given that Sri Lanka’s public debt is deemed unsustainable, Executive Board approval of an IMF-supported program for Sri Lanka would require adequate guarantees that the debt sustainability will be restored.

“IMF staff will continue to monitor the economic and political situation very closely and will engage with the authorities to formulate concrete measures under an IMF-supported program, as well as with broader stakeholders to support a rapid resolution of the crisis. We reaffirm our commitment to support Sri Lanka at this difficult time, in line with IMF policies.

On Thursday, Prime Minister Narendra Modi, during an official visit to Chennai, said India would continue to help Sri Lanka.

“Sri Lanka is going through difficult times. I’m sure that’s on your mind. As a close friend and neighbor of Sri Lanka, India is providing all possible support to the country including financial support, fuel support, food, medicine and other essentials to the country,” the Prime Minister said. Modi.

“Many Indian organizations and individuals have sent aid for their brothers and sisters in Sri Lanka, including Tamils ​​from the north and east. India has spoken out forcefully in international forums to extend its economic support to Sri Lanka. India will continue to stand with the people of Sri Lanka and support democracy, stability and economic recovery,” he added.

Read also : India supplies an additional 40,000 metric tonnes of diesel to crisis-stricken Sri Lanka

On Friday, Sri Lankan Prime Minister Ranil Wickremesinghe spoke with Sitharaman and expressed his gratitude for India’s support during “this difficult time”.

“Help from India and Japan: I am grateful for the positive response from India and Japan to the proposal made to the members of the Quad (United States, India, Japan and Australia) to take the initiative to create a foreign aid consortium to help Sri Lanka.

“I had a conversation with India’s Finance Minister @nsitharaman today. I expressed our country’s gratitude for the support India has provided during this difficult time. I look forward to further strengthening ties between our nations,” Wickremesinghe tweeted.

India has recently sent relief materials including kerosene, diesel, gasoline, rice, powdered milk and medicine to Sri Lanka.

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