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LatinNews Daily - 25 March 2020

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In brief: IMF approves Ecuador emergency loan

* Ecuador’s President Lenín Moreno has confirmed that his government has secured a US$2.5bn emergency loan from the International Monetary Fund (IMF), in order to tackle the country’s health emergency caused by the coronavirus (Covid-19) pandemic. Moreno also noted that a US$250m loan from the Inter-American Development Bank (IDB), due to be spent on an electric works project, had been redirected to the public health budget. The Ecuadorean government is fighting to maintain market confidence despite domestic pressure to suspend external debt repayments, but while the latest announcements did see the country risk spread fall to 5,245 basis points, down from an all-time high of 6,063 basis points the previous day, this high figure will continue to undermine Moreno’s efforts to encourage continued investment in the country.