IMF approves emergency financing for countries suffering from food insecurity
The International Monetary Fund (IMF)’s Executive Board has approved a new emergency financing instrument for countries suffering from acute food insecurity.
Ms Kristalina Georgieva, the Managing Director, IMF announced this in a statement obtained from the IMF website NAN) in Abuja on Saturday.
“I am very pleased to announce that the IMF’s Executive Board today approved a new Food Shock Window under our emergency financing instruments, the Rapid Credit Facility and Rapid Financing Instrument.
” The new financing window will provide additional access to emergency financing to countries that have urgent balance of payments needs and are suffering from acute food insecurity, a sharp food imports shock, or from a cereals export shock.
” The new financing window will be open for one year.”
Georgieva said for some time now, the combination of climate shocks, the pandemic and regional conflicts had disrupted food production and distribution, driving up the cost of feeding people and families.
She said Russia’s war in Ukraine had pushed the price of food and fertilisers even higher, thereby, hurting food importers and some exporters.
The managing director said as a result, a food crisis was spreading around the globe with a record 345 million people whose lives and livelihoods were in immediate danger from acute food insecurity.
She said the IMF, working with partner institutions, was actively contributing to the international response to food insecurity, notably by providing policy advice and financial assistance.
Georgieva said the newly established Food Shock Window would provide an additional line of defence after grants and concessional financing.
According to her, we have worked extensively and expeditiously with our members and staff to finalise the proposal for the new Food Shock Window.
“At a time of such need and suffering, I am grateful to our membership and proud that the fund has come together and responded so swiftly.
“We have worked with our members to secure additional channelling of Special Drawing Rights (SDRs) which can help provide support to low‑income countries through this new food shock window.
“With this new financing window, the IMF will be providing additional assistance to help people in vulnerable countries deal with one of the worst crises of all: hunger ”