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Phillips says Sandy won't soften IMF measures

Published:Wednesday | October 31, 2012 | 9:02 AM

Finance Minister, Dr Peter Phillips, says there will be no relaxation of the stringent measures being pursued in the negotiations with the International Monetary Fund (IMF) despite the damage from Hurricane Sandy.

Last Wednesday, Hurricane Sandy plowed into Jamaica leaving a trail of destruction.

That same day Prime Minister Portia Simpson Miller said she hoped the IMF would understand the country’s position.

Preliminary estimates of the damage have totaled almost $5 billion.

But Phillips says even with the setback from the hurricane, Jamaica will still have to stick to the strict fiscal programme.

He says since borrowing money to deal with the problem is not an option; the government will be looking towards grants and reallocation within the budget to deal with restoration.

The Simpson Miller Administration has said it is hoping to have the new IMF deal in place before year end.

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