25 Nov 2009

International Monetary Fund urges Fiji to stop borrowing

12:04 pm on 25 November 2009

The International Monetary Fund has urged the interim government in Fiji to stop borrowing.

Fiji Village reports the IMF's Asia and Pacific Chief Ray Brooks says the government must reduce its reliance on the Fiji National Provident Fund as a source of finance.

He says reforms are also needed within the provident fund

After a two week visit to Fiji, Mr Brooks said the government must shrink its expenditure, and said one way to do this was to reduce spending salaries and wages.

The Reserve Bank of Fiji has said the government's outstanding debt totalled 1.5 billion US dollars at the end of June, or 51.3 percent of gross domestic product.

The IMF has also revealed it did not receive a formal request for the funding of the planned reforms.

The interim Prime Minister, Commodore Frank Bainimarama, had said the IMF and World Bank were coming to Fiji regarding the funding of the government's reforms, and to check the state of the economy.