Sat, 03 Jun 2023

COLOMBO, June 22 (Xinhua) -- Sri Lankan Prime Minister Ranil Wickremesinghe told the parliament on Wednesday that a staff-level agreement with the International Monetary Fund (IMF) and a program for a bailout package would be finalized by the end of July.

The prime minister said that the first in-person talks with the IMF commenced on Monday and will go on for 10 days.

"The only safe option for Sri Lanka is to hold discussions with the International Monetary Fund. In fact, this is our only option. We must take this path," Wickremesinghe said.

He said initial discussions with the IMF on public finance, finance, debt sustainability, stability of the banking sector and the social security net have been concluded.

Wickremesinghe said the framework for Sri Lanka's debt restructuring is to be finalized by the end of July following discussions with the financial and legal advisory firms.

Sri Lanka is facing a severe economic crisis and its government suspended all the external debt repayments in April.

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