The following information has become available since the issuance of the staff report.1 The thrust of the staff appraisal remains unchanged.
Macroeconomic policy implementation appears to have remained on track in the first quarter of 2006. Both the end-March targets on reserve money and net foreign assets were met. International reserves were higher than programmed, reflecting higher project disbursements, but also lower-than-expected use of foreign exchange by the government, possibly indicating a tighter-than-programmed fiscal stance.
Consumer price inflation picked up slightly to 7.5 percent (year-on-year; end of period) in April from 7 percent in March, driven mainly by an increase in petroleum prices.
All prior actions were implemented before the issuance of the staff report.