An International Monetary Fund (IMF) mission, led by Mr. Christian Saborowski, visited Freetown from November 30 to December 9, 2022, for the sixth review of Sierra Leone’s financial and economic program supported by the Extended Credit Facility (ECF).  The ECF arrangement for Sierra Leone was approved on November 30, 2018 (see Press Release No. 18/446 ).
At the end of the mission, Mr. Saborowski issued the following statement:
“During this mission, the IMF team and the authorities discussed macroeconomic developments, against a challenging global backdrop. Sierra Leone’s macroeconomic outlook has weakened since the completion of 5 th ECF review in July. Russia’s war in Ukraine and related sanctions have contributed to exchange rate depreciation, rising inflation, and expenditure pressures. A larger-than-expected terms-of-trade decline and rising prices have weighed on demand. Food insecurity has intensified.
“The authorities and the IMF team also discussed the authorities’ progress on the structural reform agenda, as well as measures to contain budgetary pressures, maintain debt sustainability, mobilize domestic revenues, strengthen public financial management, address inflationary pressures, and foster financial stability. Discussions, including on overall progress in the context of the 6th review of the ECF arrangement, will continue over the coming weeks.
“The mission met with Minister of Finance Dennis K. Vandi, Deputy Ministers Sheku A. F. Bangura and Bockarie Kalokoh, Deputy Governors Ibrahim L. Stevens and Sheikh A. Y. Sesay, senior government officials, members of the private sector, civil society organizations, and development partners.
The mission wishes to thank the Sierra Leonean authorities for the warm welcome, constructive discussions, and the positive spirit of cooperation.”
 The Extended Credit Facility (ECF) is the IMF’s main tool for medium-term financial support to low-income countries. It provides for a higher level of access to financing, more concessional terms, enhanced flexibility in program design, and more focused, streamlined conditionality. Financing under ECF currently carries a zero-interest rate, with a grace period of 5½ years, and a final maturity of 10 years.
Distributed by APO Group on behalf of International Monetary Fund (IMF).