At the sideline of the IMF and World Bank Annual Meetings, the Ethiopian Delegation led by the Minister of Finance H.E. Ahmed Shide held constructive meetings with the IMF Executive Directors (EDs) and ED Advisors for China, France, Germany, United Kingdom and Italy.
The discussion focused on IMF’s critical development partnership, in particular in times of crisis when the needs are even greater and a sustained support on the development front is essential to avoid setbacks caused by the overlapping shocks that Ethiopia is currently facing.
The Minister briefed the EDs on Ethiopia’s current political and economic affairs, progress made on Ethiopia’s homegrown economic reform agenda, as well as the ambitious plan for the next phase of transformative reforms needed to address present challenges, push growth through private sector led development, as well as sustain development gains of recent years.
The Minister emphasized the criticality and urgency of IMF’s support in view of the millions of people across the country who are being hit by the severe drought, high inflation, conflict, rising commodity prices, and other ongoing challenges.
The Minister acknowledged the IMF’s recent visit to Ethiopia and the successful discussions around the policy reform areas that will address macro imbalances, tackle the forex exchange rate issues, tame inflation, and manage debt issues.
The Minister underlined these discussions are key steps towards agreeing on the framework of an IMF program that could support ongoing economic recovery efforts and strengthen macroeconomic stability.
The Minister asked the EDs’ support to Ethiopia’s request to access IMF’s new Food Shocks Window to dampen the food insecure resulting from the severe drought, displacement, and livelihood losses.
He highlighted that, while this assistance would directly support the poorest and most vulnerable communities across the country, the government’s ultimate interest remains in a comprehensive and ambitious Fund-supported program.
The EDs acknowledged Ethiopia’s resilience amid the overlapping shocks it is currently facing, commended the government’s ambitious economic and monetary policy reforms, and indicated their commitment to support the reform agenda through an IMF program upon further engagement.
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