Peru's government has indefinitely postponed an International Monetary Fund mission that was expected to arrive on Monday to review the economy, a presidential palace spokesman said today. He said that the government acted because it decided that the visit is not necessary.
On Wednesday night, Peruvian President Alan Garcia said he was not interested in seeking loans from the IMF because its lending accords meant the fund could intervene in Peru's economy.
The mission had planned to review Peru's economy, as IMF missions annually do of the fund's 149 member states, including the United States.
Peru stopped payment on its debt to the IMF in August. Peru must clear $72 million in arrears by April 14 or risk losing borrowing rights from it, government finance sources said.
Peru is Latin America's sixth-biggest debtor, owing $14 billion.
Meanwhile, in Venezuela, one day after the government signed a foreign debt refinancing agreement, President Jaime Lusinchi said he will invoke a "contingency clause" to seek new terms reflecting the drop in the country's oil revenue.
"The loans were made to us because of our petroleum, and we'll pay them off as a function of our petroleum," Lusinchi told the nation in a televised speech.
On Wednesday, Venezuela signed an accord with a group of international banks to restructure $21.2 billion of its foreign debt. Venezuela's total foreign debt amounts to $35 billion, making the country the fourth-largest Third World debtor.