According to the IMF, Belarus is entitled to emergency financing, as other countries have not challenged the legitimacy of its administration.
Belarus the administration is getting nearly $ 1 billion in funding from the International Monetary Fund (IMF) on Monday. The funding has been criticized by both US politicians and Belarusian activists.
Belarus is receiving financial support at a time when the regime is being subject to Western economic sanctions by the President Alexander Lukashenko due to electoral fraud and repression of the opposition.
On August 2, the IMF Board approved an emergency financing package of $ 650 billion, or just under € 560 billion, to help emerging economies in particular cope with the increase in public spending caused by the interest rate pandemic. This is the largest emergency funding package of all time.
All IMF member countries can use the financing if they wish, and a certain share of the financing is reserved for each country. Belarus accounts for $ 910 million, or about $ 780 million. It is a loan that has to be repaid.
The emergency funding will be available to member states on Monday, August 23rd.
Funding has received strong criticism, especially from the United States, as the country is the largest single donor to the IMF. The United States, as well as EU countries, has imposed economic sanctions on Belarus.
Sanctions were imposed after Lukashenko fraudulently secured his victory in the August 2020 presidential election and was then violently suppressed by peaceful protests. Civil rights in the country have since been further restricted.
Read more: The United States is imposing more sanctions on Belarus, Britain has already announced its own additional sanctions
The IMF has responded to the criticism by saying that the fund’s management does not have the opportunity to choose which countries receive funding. As the Lukashenko administration is considered legitimate by other IMF member countries, the country has the right to resort to emergency financing.
In contrast, Venezuela and Myanmar, for example, do not receive funding because a large number of IMF member countries do not consider their current leadership to be legitimate.