State House, 13th May 2019 – His Excellency, President Adama Barrow told a high-ranking delegation from the International Monetary Fund (IMF) that economic development is meaningless without real impact on the lives of ordinary people.

He made the remarks while receiving Mr. Tao Zhang, Deputy Managing Director of the IMF who called on him on Monday at the State House in Banjul. 

According to the President, such philosophical disposition is the cornerstone of the economic policies of his government. 

“The ordinary people do not understand the economic figures but real impacts on their lives’’, President Barrow said. ‘’The private sector also plays key role in employment creation. Hence my government’s priority is in reforms and strengthening institutions like the Central Bank so that they can effectively partake in sound macro-economic management of the country”.      

The President expressed political will and commitment in partnering with the IMF to ensure that ordinary Gambians feel the real impact of the political and economic progress being realized by his government. He was excited to have received the IMF team, stating that the visit was a proof that there is confidence in the economic management strategy of his government. He said that the IMF’s presence in the country will also send a strong signal to The Gambia’s development partners to continue their support to government. 

The closed-door discussion centered on ways and means of strengthening the high level of support and cooperation between the international financial institution and the government of The Gambia.  

The IMF had extended a credit facility to government through its staff management programme soon after the new government took office in 2017. It also played a key role in the organization of the international donor conference for The Gambia held in Brussels in May 2018. 

The head of the IMF delegation described the meeting with President Barrow as a good one, after an earlier meeting with Finance Minister in the morning. He said their mission was geared towards strengthening cooperation between the IMF and The Gambia. 

“The most important thing is that we congratulate the authorities and the people of The Gambia on achievements registered over the past two years. We also encouraged them to continue the path leading to prosperity down the road,” Mr. Tao Zhang asserted. 

He said there is more that needs to be done from both sides, but the IMF is confident that “the good cooperation” between the two sides, together with other development partners, can achieve the objectives envisaged by the government.

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