The Jesuit Center for Theological Reflection (JCTR) says it will support the planned International Monetary Fund (IMF) Supported Economic Stabilisation and Growth Programme for Zambia, if no stringent conditionality for a bailout programme is attached.
JCTR Executive Director Father Leonard Chiti has indicated this in an advisory note to Minister of Finance Felix Mutati.
Father Chiti in his advisory note observes that the proposed IMF package could among other things, help government address the current balance of payment situation and boost investor confidence in the economy.
He has however urged government to increase social protection expenditure to cushion low income families from removal of subsidies.
Father Chiti further explained that JCTR has observed that if Zambia does not access an IMF loan in order to help implement the home grown recovery plan, it might lead to further debt accumulation and more resources being spent on debt repayment.
He says this might result in less investment in health, education and other services that benefit citizens.
And in acknowledging receipt of the Advisory Note, Mr. Mutati praised JCTR for being candid in their submission and stated that dialogue and collective ownership is the hallmark of successful homegrown developmental programmes.
Mr. Mutati has since left for the IMF-World Bank Spring Meetings to be held in Washington, United States of America. – (ZNBC)