By Atom Markarian
The World Bank has delayed the release of the second installment of its $50 million deficit-funding loan to the Armenian government following a fall in the latter’s budget revenues, sources told RFE/RL on Wednesday.
The tranche worth $15 million was due to be made available in the first half of this month. But informed sources said the International Monetary Fund has asked the bank to postpone its payment until November, citing the government’s worse-than-expected tax collection in the last three months.
The World Bank resident representative in Yerevan, Owaise Saadat, appeared to confirm the information but did not give details. He said the bank is now awaiting the IMF’s “assessment of the macroeconomic situation in Armenia.”
The first $15 million tranche of the Structural Adjustment Credit (SAC-4) was disbursed in May after the Armenian authorities pledged to privatize national power utilities before the end of the year. The third remaining tranche is conditional on the completion of the process.