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Bulgaria: IMF Approves $657 Million Credit

Washington, 14 April 1997 (RFE/RL) - The International Monetary Fund (IMF) has approved a credit of about $657 million for Bulgaria to help pay for grain imports and to support the government's economic program over the next 14 months.

The IMF said about $147 million of the total is available for Bulgaria to use to offset increased food import costs caused by a significant decline in domestic grain yields and production during the past two years. The rest of the money is available under what the IMF calls a stand-by credit program.

The IMF praised the country's caretaker government that took over in February for making efforts to stabilize the economy and to implement an economic reform program. However, the IMF also warned that there is no longer any room for slips in policy away from economic reform. It said the government must stick with utmost determination to the path of stabilization and reform.