On Monday, the Executive Board of the International Monetary Fund (IMF) announced that a US$ 4.3 billion (approximately R70.6 billion) emergency financial assistance request by South Africa has been approved.
The National Treasury said in a statement, “The additional IMF funding is a low-interest loan that contributes to the government’s fiscal relief package while respecting South Africa’s decisions on how best to provide relief to the economy and those worst affected by the current crisis. It will also pave the way for government to provide the necessary financial relief required to forge a new economy and mitigate further harm to the economy,”.
According to reports, Minister of Finance, Tito Mboweni, is reordering and reprioritising public spending with the relief package focusing on the support of health workers and essential services, supporting the most vulnerable South Africans, increasing employment, higher economic growth and managing public debt.
The IMF says that once the Covid-19 pandemic is over, there will need to be a focus on debt sustainability and structural measures that will ensure long-term economic growth.