“Papua New Guinea's government has secured a US$340 million loan (K1.2 billion) soft loan from the International Monetary Fund.
“The Prime Minister James Marape described it as a vote of confidence in his government from the international community.
“Coming as PNG's economy feels the pinch from the Covid-19 pandemic, the loan was secured on terms of a zero interest rate over 10 years with a grace period of five-and-a-half years before first principal repayments.
“Mr Marape said that as with Australian bridge financing in 2019, the loan would go straight into the Bank of Papua New Guinea with direct foreign exchange benefits for the private sector.
“Treasurer Ian Ling-Stuckey intends the loan to underpin the 2020 budget, as government seeks to bring PNG's mountainous debt repayments under control.
“According to the prime minister, the Treasurer had worked "tirelessly to repair the country's budget", putting a stop to "reckless borrowings for poorly conceived capital projects that mostly benefited foreign firms and SOEs (State Owned Enterprises)"
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