IMF releases funds to boost Seychelles' economy amid recovery

The International Monetary Fund (IMF) has completed its first review of Seychelles’ economic performance under the Extended Fund Facility (EFF) and Rapid Financing Instrument (RFI), resulting in the immediate release of approximately $12.26 million to support the country’s ongoing recovery efforts. This financial aid arrives as the island nation’s economy shows signs of resurgence, with tourist numbers approaching pre-pandemic levels and inflation moving into negative territory.

Seychelles’ fiscal health has surpassed expectations due to robust tax revenue collection and controlled capital expenditure. As a result, gross international reserves have increased significantly, providing a stronger financial buffer against potential economic shocks. By the end of the third quarter, reserves had reached $708 million, a substantial rise from $639 million at the end of 2022.

The Central Bank of Seychelles has maintained an accommodating monetary stance, following a drop in year-on-year headline inflation to -2.4% by September. This deflationary trend is seen as a positive sign for consumer purchasing power and overall economic stability.

The IMF forecasts that Seychelles will experience real GDP growth of 3.8% in 2023, with a slight increase expected in the following year. The country’s medium-term strategy focuses on expanding reserve coverage to approximately four months of import coverage, which is anticipated to bolster economic resilience.

Despite these positive developments, Seychelles remains cautious about potential risks that could disrupt its economic trajectory. These include volatility in commodity prices and fluctuations in tourism demand due to external factors. To mitigate these threats, the government is prioritizing structural reforms aimed at enhancing revenue administration systems and public financial management practices.

In line with these strategic priorities, efforts are being made to improve digital governance frameworks and implement fiscal measures designed to foster resilience against climate change impacts. These initiatives are part of a broader agenda to ensure sustained economic recovery while advancing necessary structural reforms for long-term stability and growth.

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