In late 2011, the International Monetary Fund (IMF) revamped its crisis lending instruments in response to members’ calls for stronger global financial safety nets, particularly given the heightened financial stress in Europe and turmoil occurring in North Africa and the Middle East.
On March 6, 2012, the Bretton Woods Committee, working in cooperation with the Brookings Institution, brought senior IMF and U.S. Department of Treasury officials together with Bretton Woods Committee members and guests – including economists, academics, experts from the private sector, and former high ranking government and international financial institution officials – to evaluate these changes.
Specific lending tools discussed included the Fund’s long-standing Stand-By Arrangements (SBA); the Flexible Credit Line (FCL) established in 2009; the Precautionary and Liquidity Line (PLL) established in late 2011 for member countries with strong policies, but some remaining vulnerabilities that preclude them from using the FCL; and, the Rapid Financing Instrument (RFI), also established in late 2011 to replace existing emergency assistance instruments.
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