IMF's Georgieva says 28 countries have expressed interest in new IMF support

WASHINGTON, Oct 13 (Reuters) - International Monetary Fund Managing Director Kristalina Georgieva on Thursday said that the Washington-based lender has provided $90 billion on 18 new and augments programs since Russia's invasion of Ukraine in February, and 28 countries have expressed interest in receiving new IMF support.

Georgieva said during the IMF and World Bank annual meetings in Washington that the Fund's lending is "aligned with our counter-cyclical role," and since the pandemic began it has provided $260 billion in financial support to 93 countries.

"And we now have 28 additional countries expressing interest in receiving support from the Fund," she added during a press conference, without providing any further details on which countries are on the list or what kind of support they are seeking.

IMF's general director added that she is following closely the global food crisis, with a total of 48 countries directly impacted by food insecurity, specially in Sub-Saharan Africa.

The IMF's executive board late last month approved a new mechanism for low-condition emergency loans known as food shock window, to help vulnerable countries cope with food shortages and rising costs stemming from Russia's war in Ukraine.

This financing will be open through the Fund's existing Rapid Credit Facility and Rapid Financing Instrument programs for countries with urgent balance of payment needs that "are suffering from acute food insecurity, a sharp food imports shock, or from a cereals export shock."

"We need stronger efforts to confront food insecurity — 345 million people are acutely food insecure," Georgieva added.

Reporting by Jorgelina do Rosario; Editing by Mark Porter

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