World Bulletin / News Desk
The Arab Monetary Fund said on Tuesday it was arranging a $127 million credit facility for Morocco to help the North African nation deal with rising food prices, which could threaten its political stability.
"The amount of the loan contributes to helping the Kingdom of Morocco confront urgent economic conditions, including the increasing value of imported agricultural products," the Fund, a regional Arab body with 22 member states, said in a statement.
It did not give details of the loan, but said it would bring the Fund's total lending to Morocco so far to $1.46 billion.
Since last year Morocco has experienced bouts of protest against poverty, corruption and the perceived failure of the state to help - complaints which sparked "Arab Spring" uprisings in other North African countries in 2011.
In June the Moroccan government announced one of the sharpest rises in fuel prices in several years as part of plans to cut subsidies on food and energy products and reduce the burden on state finances.
Morocco has been hit by the economic slump in Europe, a major trading partner and source of tourism revenues and workers' remittances. The International Monetary Fund approved a $6.2 billion, two-year precautionary line of credit for Morocco in August, in case its economy deteriorated and it faced sudden financing needs.
Also, wealthy Gulf Arab states - Kuwait, Qatar, Saudi Arabia and the United Arab Emirates - have pledged a combined $5 billion of financial aid to Morocco, according to the IMF, but it is not clear if any of that money has been delivered so far.
IFC CEO Philippe Le Houerou said the fund will "lower the risk for the private sector and attract new investors -- essentially creating a market where there was none."
BIST 100 index opens 0.67 percent higher, US dollar/Turkish lira rate stands at around 3.64
Tightening monetary policies will continue to achieve lower inflation levels, Murat Cetinkaya says
Company will manage operations in 65 countries through Turkey, says head of healthcare group
"We might have to extend in order to reach the target... of stock levels," Khalid al-Falih told an energy forum in Abu Dhabi, referring to a deal between OPEC and non-OPEC producers to cut production by around 1.8 million barrels per day.
BIST 100 index opens 0.40 percent higher; US dollar/Turkish lira rate stands at around 3.66
Crude prices plummet to two-and-a-half month low
Businesses in Turkey expect structural reforms following referendum, says rating agency
"We are optimistic that the policy measures we have taken already place us on the path of recovery," OPEC Secretary General Mohammad Sanusi Barkindo said at an energy forum in Abu Dhabi.
The IMF said "hundreds of millions" of people have been lifted out of poverty through economic integration and technological progress, "helping to reduce global income inequality."
In its latest World Economic Outlook report, the IMF cut its 2017 growth forecast for the region comprising the Middle East, North Africa, Afghanistan and Pakistan to 2.6 percent, down from the 3.1 percent projected in January.
BIST 100 index opens 0.20 percent lower, US dollar/Turkish lira rate stands at around 3.69
It is now time to make progress by preserving freedoms, pluralism and solidarity: Turkey's largest business association
Number of unemployed rises by 1.9 percentage points in January year-on-year, says state agency Turkstat
Beijing has said it wants to transition away from a reliance on debt-fuelled investment and towards a consumer-driven economic model, but the transition has proved bumpy.