The International Monetary Fund has approved immediate disbursement of $1 billion to Angola under an existing program and increased its total funding access by $765 million to help it grapple with the coronavirus pandemic.
The decision by the IMF executive board comes after completion of a third review of Angola’s $3.7 billion, three-year program under the IMF’s Extended Fund Facility approved in December 2018.
Antoinette Sayeh, the IMF Deputy Managing Director said the Central African country should continue its efforts to reach a market-clearing exchange rate and advance restructuring of two public banks, and urged it to remain vigilant about public debt.
National Bank of Angola was also advised to stand ready to keep inflation in check since there was little room for further monetary easing.
Angola, which is Africa’s second largest oil exporter has seen its debt-to-GDP ratio blow out to 120% with more than 90% of its debt denominated in hard currency, mostly U.S. dollars, according to calculations by ratings agency Moody’s.