The Executive Board of the International Monetary Fund (IMF) today approved a ten-fold expansion of the Fund’s New Arrangements to Borrow (NAB) and the transformation of the Fund’s premier standing credit arrangement into a more flexible and effective tool of crisis management. The NAB will be increased by SDR 333.5 billion (about US$500 billion) to SDR 367.5 billion (about US$550 billion), representing a major increase in the resources available for the Fund’s lending to its members.
This responds to the call by the leaders of the Group of 20 (G-20) economies, endorsed by the International Monetary and Financial Committee (IMFC), to increase the financing available to the Fund, through an expanded and more flexible NAB increased by up to US$500 billion. Thirteen new participants, including a number of major emerging market economies, have indicated their willingness to join 26 current participants in the NAB. The decision today follows the agreement reached by current and prospective participants at their meeting in Washington in November 2009 on the key elements of an expanded and more flexible NAB.
“The expansion and enlargement of the NAB borrowing arrangements provides a very strong multilateral foundation for the Fund’s efforts in crisis prevention and resolution, as an essential back-stop to the Fund’s quota resources. This will help ensure that the Fund has access to adequate resources to help members that are vulnerable to financial crises,” IMF Managing Director Dominique Strauss-Kahn said.
The NAB is a standing set of credit arrangements under which participants commit resources to IMF lending when these are needed to supplement quota resources. The expanded NAB will become operational when it receives formal acceptances from the required proportion of current and potential participants, which will require legislative backing in some cases.1
“The expansion of the NAB will make an important contribution to global financial stability, but it is not a substitute for a general increase in the Fund’s quota resources. The Fund is, and shall remain, a quota-based institution. It is important now that member countries rapidly take the necessary steps to make the increased resources available,” Mr. Strauss-Kahn underscored.
The NAB is a credit arrangement between the IMF and a group of members and institutions to provide supplementary resources to the IMF when these are needed to forestall or cope with an impairment of the international monetary system. The NAB is supplementary to quota resources, which are made up of the quota subscriptions each country pays upon joining the Fund, broadly based on its relative size in the world economy. IMF members’ quotas currently total SDR 217.4 billion (about US$330 billion). Like quota allocations, the NAB is reviewed on a regular basis.
The recent unprecedented shock confronting the global economy has led to a sharp increase in the demand for IMF financing. To ensure that the IMF continues to have sufficient resources to meet demand, leaders of the G-20 agreed in April 2009 that immediate financing from members of US$250 billion would subsequently be folded into an expanded and more flexible NAB, increased by up to $500 billion. This call was endorsed by the IMFC. The G-20 leaders reaffirmed their commitment on September 25, 2009 to a tripling of the resources available to the IMF, from a pre-crisis level of about US$250 billion. At its meeting in October 2009, the IMFC welcomed the expected agreement to expand and enhance the NAB. Pending the entering into force of the expanded NAB, member countries have pledged more than $300 billion in immediate bilateral financing should the Fund require additional resources for lending.
Press Release November 24, 2009: http://www.imf.org/external/np/sec/pr/2009/pr09429.htm
G-20 Communiqué April 2, 2009:
IMFC Communiqué April 25, 2009: http://www.imf.org/external/np/sec/pr/2009/pr09139.htm
IMF Standing Arrangements to Borrow: http://www.imf.org/external/np/exr/facts/gabnab.htm
Bilateral borrowing commitments: http://www.imf.org/external/np/exr/faq/contribution.htm
IMF Quotas : http://www.imf.org/external/np/exr/facts/quotas.htm
Where the Fund gets its Money: http://www.imf.org/external/np/exr/facts/finfac.htm