Washington: Managing Director of the International Monetary Fund Kristalina Georgieva has lauded the leadership of Prime Minister Sheikh Hasina in turning Bangladesh into a role model of development.
“Bangladesh is a role model in the world (in terms of its overall development) which makes its economy stable even after the Coronavirus pandemic,” the IMF chief said on Saturday while paying a courtesy call on PM Hasina at the meeting room of The Ritz-Carlton hotel here.
Georgieva was leading an IMF delegation at the meeting, said Bangladesh Foreign Minister AK Abdul Momen reporters at a briefing.
PM Hasina is now on an official visit to the US mainly to attend the celebration of Bangladesh’s 50 years of partnership with the World Bank scheduled for Monday.
Momen said the IMF chief highly praised the unprecedented advancement of Bangladesh in various sec-tors under the dynamic leadership of Sheikh Hasina which has made country’s economy stable after the Covid-19 pandemic.
The IMF chief said leadership like that of the Bangladesh Prime Minister is necessary to go ahead with prosperity confronting all hurdles, according to Momen.
She said Bangladesh has achieved the remarkable progress due to massive infrastructure development, widespread connectivity and maintenance of the law and order.
She also hailed Bangladesh’s success in maintaining macro-economic stability even during the pandemic.
Momen said the Bangladesh premier briefed the IMF chief of her government’s initiatives to maintain the pace of the overall development of her country.
She said Bangladesh took the US$4.7 billion loan from the IMF as a “breathing space”.
“The development of the country didn’t come overnight, it has rather been the result of longtime plan-ning,” she said.
She said that she prepared the plan on how she wanted to develop Bangladesh while she was in jail (for about 11 months from July 16, 2007) and started working with the plan after assuming power for the second time in 2009.
Hasina also mentioned the numerous steps her government has taken to fight the adverse impact of the climate change and to ensure women empowerment.
Bangladesh Bank Governor Abdur Rouf Talukder separately told reporters that the IMF always stood by Bangladesh in the last 14 years to maintain stability in the macro economy and also gave required advice so the country never derails from it.
He said that Bangladesh is currently engaged with a programme of US$4.7 billion with the IMF which Bangladesh got only after two weeks of negotiation despite the fact many countries fail to get the loan after years of negotiations.
“The IMF will continue such kind of cooperation in future,” Rouf said quoting the IMF chief.
He said that the prime minister hailed the role of the IMF in the journey of Bangladesh’s development and pledged continuation of the support in future.
Senior Secretary of Finance Division Fatima Yasmin and Economic Relations Division Secretary Sharifa Khan were present during the briefing.
Under a programme approved in January this year, Bangladesh will get the $4.7 billion loan in seven installments over the next 42 months. The average interest on the loan will be 2.2 percent.
Of the total amount, $3.3 billion will be available from the IMF’s ‘Enhanced Credit Support’ while $1.4 billion will come under the ‘Resilience and Sensibility Facility’.
Bangladesh has already received the first tranche of $476.2 million of the IMF loan.
The IMF said the loan will help stabilise Bangladesh’s macro-economy, implement necessary reforms to build capacity for social and development spending, strengthen the financial sector, modernise policy frameworks and address climate change.