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Press-conference on visit of IMF mission held

19 April 2006 [10:41] - TODAY.AZ
Today press-conference on the results of the visit of the Head of the Central Asia and East Department of the International Monetary Fund (IMF) Vitali Kramarenko to Azerbaijan was held.

As APA repors, Mr.Kramarenko said that issues on the incomes and budget of the country in 2006 were reviewed during the visit. An agreement was achieved concerning the program of IMF's cooperation with Azerbaijan. "The main question is to retain inflation in stable form", saying Mr.Kramarenko noted that taking into account growth of expenditures, exchange rate of US dollar against manat in the country, and speed of capital flow to the country, it would be difficult to retain inflation at a desired level: "Inflation rate may exceed 5-7% this year".

The head of the mission also said that the situation of commercial banks in Azerbaijan is not satisfactory as in Russia or Kazakhstan: "According to the legislation, state banks are preferred to private banks. That is why people confide in state banks more than in private banks. At present we are holding consultations with the government of Azerbaijan. Moreover, it is planned to provide technical assistance to the country. The national Bank should intensify the work concerning notes, and increase liquidity."

Mr.Kramarenko also noted that during the visit short-term macroeconomic forecasts were also reviewed. The issue on their renovation and the macroeconomic policy for the remaining part of 2006 were also discussed: "Actually, in our forecasts we planned 1 barrel of oil at $60. However, the budget indicates $40. The forecast in the balance of payments is also satisfactory. This year 25-30% growth will occur in oil extraction in connection with the economic increase."

The mission's recommendations to the government were about reduction of subsidies.
It should be noted that the economists of IMF on Azerbaijan Mayra Zermeno, Kathryn Elbor-Voytek, Selim Cakir, Deykhan Kim, Shuan Dingin were also included in the mission. The mission had meetings in the Ministries of Finance, Economic Development, taxes, State Customs Committee and National Bank of Azerbaijan.


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