The temporary increase in access limits under IMF emergency financing instruments will expire on October 5, 2020, unless extended. Access limits under emergency instruments (the Rapid Credit Facility (RCF) and Rapid Financing Instrument (RFI)) were increased in April 2020 for a period of six months, from 50 to 100 percent of quota annually and from 100 to 150 percent of quota cumulatively. The increased limits are subject to review and can be extended before their expiration.
It is proposed to extend the period of higher access limits for emergency financing for a period of six months, through April 6, 2021. Against a background of continued pandemic-related disruption, staff expects there could be significant demand for emergency lending in the October 2020–April 2021 period, including from countries with pending requests and from countries that received emergency support at levels less than the maximum amounts available. A six-month extension would give more time for countries to benefit from higher access limits under emergency financing.
Better targeted support to LICs. In July 2015, the Executive Board approved measures to strengthen the financial safety net for low-income countries. Specifically, access norms and limits to the Poverty Reduction and Growth Trust (PRGT) resources were increased by 50 percent and the Rapid Credit Facility (RCF) interest rate was set permanently at zero. In addition, four countries graduated from PRGT eligibility. Together with a rebalancing of the mix of blended financing towards more use of general Fund resources for better-off PRGT-eligible countries, these reforms were broadly resource neutral and left the PRGT self-sustaining framework intact.
Demand for PRGT resources up strongly. In 2015, demand reached SDR 1.5 billion, largely in response to shocks to commodity prices and adverse global financial market conditions. Demand is expected to remain elevated in 2016, as the global environment continues to be challenging.
Commitments under new PRGT-supported programs are expected to increase in 2012 in part reflecting the weaker global economic outlook. PRGT commitments in 2011 amounted to SDR 1.2 billion, unchanged from their 2010 level. Staff projections suggest demand could rise to about SDR 2 billion in 2012. If all elements of the 2009 financing package are secured, the PRGT will have an annual average lending capacity of SDR 2.2 billion over 2012–14, or SDR 1.6 billion through 2015. Additional pledges of SDR 1 billion in loan resources are still required to secure the targeted loan resources approved under the 2009 financing package. Fourteen members have so far pledged SDR 9.8 billion in new loan resources for the PRGT compared with the target of SDR 10.8 billion. New borrowing agreements totaling SDR 9.5 billion have been signed with thirteen lenders.
New commitments under PRGT-supported programs are expected to increase to about SDR 2 billion in 2012, in part reflecting the large ECF commitment (SDR 0.6 billion) for Bangladesh approved in April. Commitments in the first eight months of 2012 amounted to SDR 1.4 billion and a further SDR 0.6 billion is expected to be committed by year end. This compares to total commitments of SDR 1.2 billion in each of 2010 and 2011. If all elements of the 2009 financing package are secured, the PRGT will have an annual average lending capacity of SDR 2.2 billion remaining under this package for the period 2013–14. Additional
Lower-than-expected demand over the recent past has raised the lending capacity of the PRGT for the years 2012–14. Staff’s latest projections suggest PRGT demand in 2011 could be about SDR 1.4 billion, up from SDR 1.2 billion in 2010. Assuming the 2009 LIC financing package is completed, these projections would be consistent with lending capacity of about SDR 2.1 billion per year from 2012–14, or SDR 1.5 billion per year through 2015.
Most of the targeted loan resources under the 2009 package have now been secured, but additional pledges of about SDR 1 billion in loans are still needed. Fourteen members have pledged SDR 9.8 billion in new loan resources for the PRGT, compared to the target of SDR 10.8 billion. New borrowing agreements totaling SDR 9.5 billion have been signed with thirteen lenders. Eight of these agreements provide loan resources in SDRs, and seven creditors also participate in the voluntary encashment regime.
There is broad recognition that countries in fragile situations face unique challenges. While fragility may afflict countries at different levels of income and capacity, common features of fragile states are institutions that are seen to be weak and lack legitimacy, as well as a fractious political setting, which in turn elevates the risk of violence.
Fragilities impose large costs and hardships on local populations that can spill over to neighboring countries—directly through conflict, crime, and disease, but also through economic linkages. Considering these unique challenges, the international community is developing forms of engagement that stress peacebuilding, social cohesion, and statebuilding. They incorporate recognition of the need for sustained engagement, a willingness to take calculated risks in uncertain environments, fuller attention to the political economy of reforms and capacity constraints, and coordination of donor efforts.
Significant progress has been made towards meeting the fund-raising targets for the PRGT, but additional resources will be needed to complete the 2009 LIC financing package. So far, fourteen members have pledged about SDR 9.8 billion in new loan resources, compared to the target of SDR 10.8 billion (including provision for a liquidity buffer to facilitate encashment). New borrowing agreements totaling SDR 7.7 billion have been signed with ten lenders. Six of these agreements provide loan resources in SDRs, and five creditors also participated in the voluntary encashment regime.
A new framework to facilitate mobilization of loan resources for the PRGT became effective in June 2010. It includes a voluntary encashment regime allowing claims of participating creditors to qualify as reserve assets; the issuance of PRGT notes; and a revised framework for borrowing in SDRs.
Members have responded positively to the Managing Director’s fund-raising request. Thirteen members have pledged about SDR 9.3 billion in additional loan resources, compared to the target of SDR 10.8 billion (including provision for a liquidity buffer to facilitate encashment). New loan and note purchase agreements totaling SDR 7.2 billion have been signed so far with nine lenders. Five of these borrowing agreements provide loan resources in SDRs. It remains important to mobilize additional loan resources to complete the financing package.
This paper updates the quota data base through 2008 and discusses implications for members’ calculated quota shares. A subsequent staff paper will review key issues related to the realignment of quota shares and present additional illustrative simulations, for discussion by the Committee of the Whole in early July.
This paper provides a semi-annual review of the status of financing for the Fund’s concessional lending and debt relief to low-income countries (LICs). Since the last review, the Executive Board has approved comprehensive reforms of the Fund’s concessional lending instruments and financing framework.
This update is based on data available at end-August and also takes into account the implications of these reforms.