In These New Times

A new paradigm for a post-imperial world

Iceland Discusses Rejecting IMF Loans

Posted by seumasach on October 7, 2009

Iceland Review

7th October, 2009

It appears as if a cross-political majority is forming in the Icelandic parliament, Althingi, on reconsidering Iceland’s relations with the International Monetary Fund (IMF). Chairman of the Independence Party Bjarni Benediktsson doubts that it is in Iceland’s best interest to accept further loans.

Benediktsson argued that Iceland can regain trust in the international arena with a credible strategy on state finances and moderate debts, thus disagreeing with Prime Minister Jóhanna Sigurdardóttir, who said cooperation with the IMF is vital for Iceland to regain trust. “[We won’t regain trust] by running around and ask for loans,” Benediktsson stated, according to Morgunbladid.

Minister of Finance Steingrímur J. Sigfússon met managing director of the IMF Dominique Strauss-Kahn at the IMF’s general meeting in Istanbul yesterday and said he was satisfied with the meeting, that understanding for Iceland’s cause had increased. But Strauss-Kahn has yet to convince the majority of the IMF board, Sigfússon pointed out.

Minister of Business Affairs Gylfi Magnússon said on RÚV’s news magazine Kastljósyesterday that although he doesn’t recommend rejecting the IMF loan package, he doesn’t want to make any apocalyptic predictions of what would happen should Iceland decide to reconsider the loans. Iceland would probably still be able to receive loans, the minister reasoned, only on worse terms.

Former Minister of Health Ögmundur Jónasson commented, “The IMF should leave the country immediately,” adding, “It doesn’t serve any purpose here.” Jónasson told Morgunbladid that it’s a myth and an illusion that foreign currency reserves, held solely in loans, can strengthen the Icelandic currency.

Click here to read more about Sigfússon’s meetings with IMF member state representatives in Istanbul.

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s

 
%d bloggers like this: