Angola Asks IMF for Talks on Bailout in Return for Reform

Angola has asked the IMF for talks on a bailout in return for more structural reform in Africa’s second-biggest crude exporter, the Financial Times reported. The IMF confirmed on Tuesday that Angola’s government under President João Lourenço asked “to initiate discussions on an economic programme” supported by bailout loans. The fund “stands ready to help the authorities address Angola’s economic challenges by supporting their economic policies and reforms”, it added. Mr Lourenço’s ruling MPLA has launched a turnround plan for the economy, which was badly hit by the fall in oil prices after 2014. It has included devaluing the currency by over half against the US dollar and promises by Mr Lourenço to root out state corruption. Angola’s economy, the third biggest in sub-Saharan Africa, remains plagued by foreign currency shortages and rising bad loans in banks. Read more. (Subscription required.)