IMF hails Brazilian finance minister’s first announcement

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Brasilia, May 20 (IANS) The International Monetary Fund (IMF) welcomed the first announcements made by Brazil’s newly appointed Finance Minister Henrique Meirelles on how to overcome the country’s worst recession, saying they are positive.

After taking office last week, Meirelles expressed his hope to control public debt, reform the pension system and increase taxes. But he did not present any concrete proposals, Xinhua news agency reported.

“We hope that the economic reforms, which are very necessary, can be implemented quickly to help Brazil overcome the current economic situation,” IMF’s spokesperson Gerry Rice said on Thursday.

IMF considers it essential to recover confidence, investments, the inflation target, the floating exchange rate and the fiscal responsibility, Rice said.

“In this way, we applaud Meireilles’ emphasis on the need to establish the debt trajectory and to preserve the social security system through reforms that guarantees its financial sustainability in the long term,” Rice added.

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Though it is difficult to predict how the country’s political and economic atmosphere will evolve, the IMF is “very interested” in collaborating with the Brazilian finance minister’s team by offering technical assistance and advice, Rice added.



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