SOLOMON ISLANDS MINISTER WELCOMES IMF REPORT

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HONIARA, Solomon Islands (Solomon Star, Sept. 18 ) – Solomon Islands Finance Minister Gordon Darcy Lilo yesterday welcomed the International Monetary Fund (IMF) executive board’s final report on the country for 2007.

The report, released last Friday, focused on the country’s economic and reform progress.

"Like the IMF delegation that visited the country, the report has strongly supported the many reforms this Government has been implementing to strengthen our economy and provide greater opportunities for all of us," Mr Lilo said.

Therefore, he said, he welcomes the IMF’s repeated recognition that the Government is working hard to implement important reforms.

"And I acknowledge their ongoing constructive advice about important issues we still need to tackle," the Minister said.

Mr Lilo said he was particularly pleased that the IMF had strongly welcomed "the Solomon Islands’ favourable near-term growth prospects, and the Solomon Islands authorities’ success in maintaining macroeconomic stability…"

IMF has given positive recognition of many of the government reforms implemented, including:

Mr Lilo also welcomed the IMF’s endorsement of further reforms, which the Government is currently working to introduce.

These are:

"As a matter of fact, I am passionate and personally committed to introducing these reforms, and the many other reforms that will make the economy, and the fiscal position of the government, even more stronger," Mr Lilo said.

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