“The Islamic Republic of Iran is one of the countries that has suffered the brunt (of the coronavirus) in the MENA region,” CBI Chief Abdolnaser Hemmati said at a video conference meeting between the finance ministers and directors generals of the Middle East and North Africa (MENA) region and Managing Director of the International Monetary Fund (IMF) Kristalina Georgieva on Wednesday.
Hemmati also expressed his gratitude to the IMF for offering financial aid to the countries plagued by COVID-19.
“Also, Iran was one of the first countries to request emergency support funds under the Rapid Financing Instrument (RFI),” the CBI chief noted.
“We worked with the IMF staff to assess the amount needed in the balance of payments due to this global pandemic,” he added.
The top official then expressed hope that the IMF would remain a neutral international entity.
“From our perspective, the IMF is an independent and non-political international institution and we hope it will remain the same,” he said.
“Our people expect the IMF as well as the World Bank to be answerable, which makes it all the more necessary for the IMF to respond impartially, seriously and immediately” Hemmati stressed.
“If the neutrality of the IMF is harmed, it will be very difficult to fix it,” the CBI chief warned.
Hemmati then asked the IMF managing director to have Iran’s RFI request brought up at the Board of Directors to be decided on.
Iran is going to use the financial aid from the RFI to procure the medical equipment needed to save the lives of coronavirus patients and stem the spread of the disease, Hemmati concluded.