Renewed: 12.03.2004, 12:00
Government Communication Unit, 18 February 1999
PRESS RELEASE February 10, 1999
Prime Minister Meets with IMF Delegation.
Prime Minister Siimann met today at Toompea with the IMF delegation,
led by Peter Keller. IMF and the Prime Minister discussed Estonia's
macroeconomic situation, the possibilities of a new economic program,
and the matter of terminating the annual economic consultations
with IMF, conducted under article IV of IMF by-laws.
IMF representatives gave good marks to the international picture
of Estonia's economic policies, but found that in the future the
national budgets increases should be smaller than economic growth.
IMF noted that expenditures in the national budget have increased
and the rate of increase should be reduced.
Mart Siimann gave the IMF representatives an overview of Estonia's
present economic situation and told them of the government's definite
intention to transfer most of the money from the sale of Telekom
to the stabilization fund. "I have spoken with the opposition
politicians, and they are of the same opinion," Siimann added.
Mart Siimann said that the current government is ready to assist
with the preparation of the new economic program, despite the
fact that the next government will be signing it.
Regarding the negotiations under Article IV, the IMF executive
council will deliberate that most likely on May 5.
IMF representatives commented on last year's bank mergers and
said that the influx of foreign capital has strengthened banking
In the discussions, Siimann and Keller touched upon the report
on Maapank. Keller said that the issuing of the report showed
Estonia's desire to be transparent.
Peter Keller made special mention of the fact that Estonia's decision-makers have succeeded in leaving the stabilization fund untouched.
He emphasized that the reserve fund should be given legal basis.
The Prime Minister stated that legislation to that effect is
Given that this was, most likely, the last meeting between Siimann
and the IMF delegation within the present government's context,
Siimann expressed deep appreciation to the IMF delegation for
their cooperation during the past two years which, in his opinion,
has been exceptional.
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