Press Release No. 00/32
April 19, 2000

International Monetary Fund
700 19th Street, NW
Washington, D.C. 20431 USA




IMF Approves Stand-By Credit for Ecuador

The International Monetary Fund (IMF) today approved a 12-month stand-by credit for Ecuador in an amount equivalent to SDR 226.73 million (about US$304 million) to support the government's economic program for 2000. The first disbursement in a amount equivalent to SDR 85 million (about US$114 million) is available immediately and the remainder will be disbursed in five equal bimonthly installments.

In commenting on the Executive Board discussion, Stanley Fischer, Acting Managing Director, said: "The authorities' policies as set out in the program have already achieved some important initial success in halting the run on banks and beginning to restore confidence. The program is very demanding and successful implementation will require firm resolve on the part of the authorities, and the support of the Congress and the public at large. To build on their initial success, the policies envisaged in the program will need to be implemented decisively and will need to be supported by adequate external financing, including debt relief and the restoration of banks' external credit lines.

"While the decision to dollarize the economy has achieved initial successes, its continued success poses major challenges: structural reforms will need to be implemented vigorously to enable the economy to better withstand external shocks; and the public finances need to be strengthened to reduce pressures coming from the budgetary needs of the public sector. In addition, the authorities will need to move ahead quickly with the bank resolution strategy, including by implementing the steps envisaged in the program to improve bank supervision and prudential regulation, and speed up the restructuring of household and corporate debt. It will be necessary to preserve a voluntary framework for restructuring large debts, in order to minimize the ultimate costs to the taxpayer of resolving the banking crisis.

"The authorities' program calls for wage restraint and significant increases in heavily subsidized domestic fuel prices; these subsidies mainly benefit middle- and upper-income groups. To offset the impact on the poorest groups, the program provides for substantial increases in cash payments to the poor. The program also provides for the possibility of further increases in social expenditures in the second half of 2000, if projected financing is realized and fiscal revenues are higher than programmed.

"The budget for 2001 will include measures to mobilize additional revenue, diversify the tax base away from oil, reduce tax earmarking, and create a more efficient and equitable tax structure. These measures would be complemented by legislation aimed at liberalizing the production, distribution, and pricing of domestic fuels.

"The external financing needs of the program are large, and the prospects for Ecuador regaining market access in the near future are poor. An appropriate degree of private sector involvement in the resolution of Ecuador's debt and balance of payments problems is essential. It probably will need to include both cash flow relief and debt reduction, if a sustainable external and fiscal position is to be restored over the medium and longer term. The authorities intend to make every effort to reach an early cooperative solution with their private creditors. They have announced a further meeting with private creditors to be held in May 2000 to work toward this objective", Fischer said.



アメリカのドル化と対抗できる政策は日本にあるのか?  Japan acts to protect markets 参照