Bosnia and Herzegovina is still far from concluding a new arrangement with the International Monetary Fund, and, as confirmed to Nezavisne Novine by the IMF, 300 million euros of aid for BiH is expected to be paid before the end of the month.
As a reminder, “Nezavisne novine” predicted such an outcome half a year ago after it became clear that the IMF would not deviate from the request for reforms, and especially after the IMF promised assistance to BiH.
Although the IMF’s idea is well-intentioned, to help BiH cope with the consequences of the coronavirus more easily, domestic politicians have interpreted that money can be obtained without implementing reforms.
Namely, on the eve of the start of a new round of negotiations on the arrangement last year, the IMF set reasonable but difficult conditions for BiH to conclude a new arrangement, which aimed to better monitor money flows, prevent money laundering, strengthen the fiscal system and implement structural reforms.
For example, if BiH adopted the condition that the register of private individuals’ accounts be in the Central Bank of BiH, it would be much more difficult to manipulate money laundering, because it would be possible to easily check cash flows in the central records.
From one source who was involved in talks with the IMF while they lasted, Nezavisne learned that domestic authorities suggested that the entities have central registers that the Central Bank could access after sending an official request to gain insight.
The source told that the IMF rejected this condition because it would be possible to remove the money from the account in a few seconds, which would lose the sense of control of these funds.
However, then the top of the IMF in Washington decided to provide practically interest-free credit to all countries in order to help the economy get out of the crisis caused by the covid.
The Ministry of Finance and Treasury of BiH confirmed that there are no indications of new negotiations with the IMF.
“I hereby inform you that the last session of the Fiscal Council was held on April 22, 2021, when a potential new arrangement with the IMF was discussed, but that no agreement was reached, and that further talks were not initiated by either side. “, they said for” Nezavisne “.