Iraq gets initial accord for $3 billion Islamic Development Bank loans

 26 May 2016 - 11:44

Iraq gets initial accord for $3 billion Islamic Development Bank loans

 

The Islamic Development Bank has given its initial agreement to provide $3 billion in easy loans and grants to Iraq, helping the nation cope with a sharp decline in oil revenue, a central bank spokesman in Baghdad said Thursday in an email.

The spokesman did not give further details.

Iraq earlier this month agreed a $5.4 billion standby loan with the International Monetary Fund. Finance Minister Hoshyar Zebari, announcing the agreement on May 19, said the IMF loans could unlock $15 billion more in international assistance over the next three years.

Iraq's economy has been hit by the plunge in oil prices since mid-2014 and the country is expected to have a financing gap of $17 billion this year unless it can secure more funding, an IMF document obtained by Reuters showed. The cost of fighting Islamic State militants is another burden on the budget.

REUTERS