The International Monetary Fund (IMF) has given the government of Malawi money amounting to MK55 billion (about US$ 76.8 million) under the Extended Credit Facility (ECF) arrangement to help in addressing challenges brought by drought in the country.

The approval follows the completion of the seventh and eighth review of Malawi’s economic performance under the program supported by the Extended Credit Facility – ECF for Malawi. This brings the total IMF disbursement to Malawi at 169.1 million US dollars.

In a statement issued on Monday signed by IMF Acting Chair and Deputy Managing Director Mr. Min Zhu said that the board has also approved Malawi’s request for an extension of the current ECF arrangement to end December 2016 and an increase in access of funds to the tune of US$49.2 million.

He said the requested extension would give the Malawi Government more time to achieve the original objectives of the program while the additional financing will help to strengthen the country’s response to the El Niño induced drought which has caused humanitarian crisis.

“The Board also approved the authorities’ request for waivers of non-observance of performance criteria related to net domestic borrowing by the government and net international reserves,” he said.

The three-year ECF arrangement for Malawi in the total amount of SDR 104.1 million (about US$ 144.4 million) was approved on July 23, 2012.

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