IMF, WB delegation arrives in Baku to discuss possible aid package (UPDATE)
Details added (first version posted on 09:38)
Baku, Azerbaijan, Jan. 28
By Ilaha Mammadli - Trend:
The delegation consisting of the IMF (International Monetary Fund) and the WB (World Bank) members has arrived in Baku to discuss a possible aid package for Azerbaijan, the country's government source told Trend Jan. 28.
Earlier, the Financial Times newspaper said that the issue concerned emergency loans' package worth $4 billion. The delegation will stay in Baku Jan. 28 - Feb. 4.
The IMF team will be in Baku for "a fact-finding staff visit at the authorities' request", an IMF spokesperson said, according to the newspaper. "It will discuss possible "technical assistance" and "assess possible financing needs"," the Financial Times reported.
A World Bank spokesman said the IMF and it were discussing with the government immediate and longer-term measures "in response to the pressure on the local currency and low oil prices", according to the newspaper.
"Discussions with Baku are at an early stage and the Azerbaijani government may yet opt to go without support from the IMF," the Financial Times said.
The Azerbaijani government and the World Bank (WB) started negotiations for funding increase, the bank's local office told Trend.
"At this stage, we conduct pre-consultation and it is too early to talk about the financial parameters," the office said. "The negotiations may take several months, as a result of which an action plan will be developed."
As the negotiations at an early stage, the specific areas of cooperation are not defined yet, said the office.
"Credit resources can be presented as to finance investment projects and to support the state budget and reforms," the office added. "Cooperation format can be different."
At the same time, the bank excluded the possibility of concessional lending resumption to Azerbaijan through the International Development Association (IDA), which is a part of Bank's group.
It is related with the economic development of Azerbaijan, including per capita income, which is one of the main indicators for granting concessional loans, which went beyond the criteria for IDA countries, the office explained.