Jamaica completes IMF agreement — major achievement says PM

Prime Minister Andrew Holness says Jamaica’s successful completion of financial arrangements with the International Monetary Fund (IMF) is a major milestone in the country’s economic history, for which all Jamaicans can be proud.

“We have worked consciously, deliberately…we have worked with transparency. We have worked diligently to ensure that we meet all the targets that we have set for ourselves and this is a major achievement in our economy and our development generally.” 

Holness was speaking at a press conference held on Wednesday (Sept. 18) , as the IMF completes its sixth and final review mission under the Precautionary Stand-by Arrangement (SBA).

“The people of Jamaica have sacrificed …but there is still much more work to be done.” 

— Prime Minister Andrew Holness

The Prime Minister said Jamaica is now being viewed as an example of a country “that has successfully executed difficult economic policies.”

“I feel a sense of accomplishment. The nation should feel proud of what we have accomplished. The unions have sacrificed, the private sector has sacrificed, the people of Jamaica have sacrificed and we are now seeing the fruits of it but there is still much more work to be done.” 

He noted that the programme’s success signals to all stakeholders “that our system of Governance can keep its word, and that is very important for trust-building; it’s very important for policy credibility.”

Jamaica’s current programme with the IMF is scheduled to officially end in November. 

The country will, however, continue to benefit from technical assistance, and the Jamaica office will be maintained for an additional two years.

Jamaica’s latest relationship with the IMF started in 2013 when the country entered into a four-year US$932-million Extended Fund Facility (EFF).

This arrangement ended in 2016 when it was replaced by a US$1.6-billion Precautionary Stand-By Arrangement.