The President of the Republic of Sierra Leone, Dr. Ernest Bai Koroma has expressed thanks and appreciation to Bretton Woods Institutions [IMF and World Bank] in the ongoing African Caucus meeting at the Miata Conference Hall in Freetown for their continuous support to African countries. He expressed appreciation over the significant progress in ensuring Macroeconomic Stabilization, promoting popular participation and consolidating cohesive nation states in Africa. He underscored the fiscal and monetary stimuli provided by advanced economies that he reiterated continue to play a critical role to recover the global economy.
President Koroma said that the relationship between Bretton Woods Institutions and Africa started long ago and has contributed to enhancing African economies greatly through policies like the Structural Adjustment of African economies from the 1980s to date which he said has enhanced credit facilities, and the current poverty alleviation MDG program in Africa necessitated by the Bretton Woods Institutions. While commending Breton Woods for their support to Africaís infrastructural development, he however said there was need for their input in the continentís agricultural sector.
The president also hinted that in spite of the numerous efforts the recent financial, economic and food crises on the African economy have posed serious challenges to Africaís macroeconomic stability and sustainable growth. He in that regard appealed to the Bretton Woods Institutions to take note of the impact of these developments on our economies with a view to providing appropriate financing instruments and other forms of assistance to enhance our poverty reductions efforts.
President Koroma said that was why the African Caucus meeting was important to provide an opportunity once a year for high level African policy makers and advisers to meet, discuss and share ideas and experience in the management of the Africa economies especially with the help of the Bretton Woods Institutions (World Bank and IMF).
President Koroma also dilated on the review of the IMF mandate in compliance with their timely and appropriate response to African Countries following the international crisis. He appealed to the two Institutions for the introduction of new and flexible lending policies for low income countries, while also demanding to improve the voice and representation of African countries in the Bretton Woods Institutions.
The two days meeting which commenced yesterday, aimed at discussing issues relating to Africa in the context of global financial and economic crises, and to find a way forward. The African Caucus was formed by African Finance Ministers and Bank Governors following the Montere Convention in Mexico in 2002. The Caucus comprises African member countries, the World Bank and the International Monetary Fund (IMF), but with high participation by countries in sub- Saharan African whose economies are weak, a characteristic of Least Developed Countries (LDCS).
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Newspaper in Freetown, Sierra Leone.