Lagarde to visit Angola on December 20-22

Reuters/Leonhard Foeger

Reuters/Leonhard Foeger

Christine Lagarde, the Managing Director of the International Monetary Fund (IMF), is set to visit Angola on December 20-22 to negotiate a $4.5 billion loan.

In a press release issued today, the Angolan Ministry of Finance says that Lagarde's visit will be held as part of the ongoing IMF loan talks (formally launched on August 1, amounting to €3.8 billion), which can only be concluded after the Angolan parliament passes the 2019 State Budget, to be voted on December 14.

"To be disbursed over three years, and averaging $1.3 million per year, [the loan] is seen as an incentive for other multilateral institutions to consider funding the Treasury outside the scope of projects, as opposed to the current weight of bilateral lines allocated to projects," the document reads.

The purpose of Lagarde's two-day visit, which will mark the climax of the relationship between Angola and the IMF, is to discuss the programs to be implemented for leveraging the economy.

According to the press release, Christine Lagarde will meet with Angolan President João Lourenço, the Government's economy team, and several women leaders. But Lagarde will also take part in other activities, such as charity events.

On August 1, 2018, the Angolan government asked the IMF to commence talks on an economic program to be funded under the EFF (Extended Fund Facility). Luanda "requested the adjustment of the IMF support program, adding a funding component" -- a request made after the agreement negotiated by the Angolan government in 2008, which basically aimed at consolidating the fiscal adjustment.

During the 2019 State Budget parliamentary debate in November, Angolan Finance Minister Archer Mangueira argued that an IMF-funded program would provide, among other objectives, credit lines at lower costs than market rates.