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Press Release No. 03/27
March 6, 2003
International Monetary Fund
700 19th Street, NW
Washington, D.C. 20431 USA

IMF Suspends Liberia's Voting Rights in the Fund

The Executive Board of the International Monetary Fund (IMF) has suspended Liberia's voting and related rights in the Fund, after having determined that Liberia had failed to strengthen its cooperation with the IMF in the areas of policy implementation and payments to the IMF. As a result of the Board's decision, Liberia can no longer appoint a Governor or Alternate Governor to the IMF, participate in the election of an Executive Director for its Board, and cast its vote in decisions on Fund policy and country matters.

Liberia has been in continuous arrears to the Fund since December 1984. The suspension of a member's voting and related rights is one in a series of escalating remedial measures that the Fund applies to members that fail to meet their obligations under the Articles of Agreement of the Fund. Liberia was declared ineligible to use the general resources of the Fund on January 24, 1986. On February 25, 2002, the Executive Board decided that the procedure to suspend Liberia's voting and related rights in the IMF be initiated, and the Managing Director's complaint regarding the suspension was issued on April 8, 2002. On October 4, 2002, the Executive Board of the IMF decided to defer the suspension of Liberia's voting and related rights in the Fund to provide a further opportunity for the authorities of Liberia to strengthen economic policies and increase payments to the Fund. At that time, the Executive Board decided to consider this issue again within five months.

As of end-February 2003, Liberia's arrears to the IMF amounted to SDR 499.6 million (US$685 million). For more information, please refer to the IMF's external website at http://www.imf.org/external/np/tre/tad/exfin1.cfm.

The Executive Board will review Liberia's overdue financial obligation to the Fund within six months of March 5, 2003.

Additional information on how the Fund deals with overdue financial obligations is available in Chapter V of Financial Organization and Operations of the IMF (IMF Pamphlet Series No. 45, 6th ed., 2001). This publication is also posted on the Fund's external website at http://www.imf.org/external/pubs/ft/pam/pam45/contents.htm




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