Accurate and up-to-date information on the work of the IMF has been in high demand throughout the years. Our factsheets are a popular outreach tool, with over a million internet "visits" a year. The factsheets provide a web-friendly, plain-English explanation of the work of the IMF on the issues of most importance to our key stakeholders as well as to those developing an interest in our work.

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October 7, 2021

IMF Stand-By Arrangement (SBA)

In an economic crisis, countries often need financing to help them overcome their balance of payments problems. Since its creation in June 1952, the IMF’s Stand-By Arrangement (SBA) has been the workhorse lending instrument for emerging and advanced market countries. The SBA was upgraded in 2009 along with the Fund’s broader toolkit to be more flexible and responsive to member countries’ needs. Conditions were streamlined and simplified, and more funds were made available up front. The reform also enables broader high-access on a precautionary basis.

August 5, 2021

Special Drawing Rights (SDR)

The SDR is an international reserve asset, created by the IMF in 1969 to supplement its member countries’ official reserves. To date, a total of SDR 660.7 billion (equivalent to about US$943 billion) have been allocated. This includes the largest-ever allocation of about SDR 456 billion approved on August 2, 2021 (effective on August 23, 2021). This most recent allocation was to address the long-term global need for reserves, and help countries cope with the impact of the COVID-19 pandemic. The value of the SDR is based on a basket of five currencies—the U.S. dollar, the euro, the Chinese renminbi, the Japanese yen, and the British pound sterling.

March 23, 2021

Regional Capacity Development Centers

The IMF has a global network of 17 regional centers that coordinate much of its capacity development work in countries. Tailored to regional priorities, these centers work closely with member countries and development partners to respond quickly to emerging needs. Member and host countries, as well as external partners, help the IMF finance these centers. Their activities are complemented by capacity development financed by the IMF’s special thematic funds  and the IMF’s own resources.

March 17, 2021

Joint World Bank-IMF Debt Sustainability Framework for Low-Income Countries

Low-income countries (LICs) have often struggled with large external debts. The IMF and the World Bank have developed a framework to help guide countries and donors in mobilizing the financing of LICs' development needs, while reducing the chances of an excessive build-up of debt in the future. The Debt Sustainability Framework (DSF) was introduced in April 2005 and is periodically reviewed. The current framework was approved by IMF and World Bank Executive Boards in September 2017 and has been implemented since July 2018.

March 3, 2021

Thematic Funds for Capacity Development (CD)

The IMF maintains eight thematic funds that finance capacity development in areas of IMF expertise, including revenue mobilization, management of natural resources, tax administration, financial stability, financial sector reform, debt management, economic statistics, and AML/CFT. The IMF currently also operates one fragile states fund, focused on Somalia. All funds are complemented by the IMF’s extensive network of Regional Capacity Development Centers.

March 3, 2020

IMF and Good Governance

The IMF places great emphasis on promoting good governance when providing policy advice, financial support, and technical assistance to its member countries. The IMF also has measures in place to ensure integrity, impartiality, and honesty in the discharge of its own professional obligations.