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World Bank, IMF pressure Yemen to end fuel subsidies.

SANA'A, June 20 -- Before receiving funds from the World Bank, the International Monetary Fund (IMF) and donor nations, Yemen must first end government subsidies for fuel, a member of parliament revealed to Yemen Times. The source said that the government intends to issue a decree ending the subsidies. It's a move the government will be forced to take, he said, to meet the requirements necessary for receiving the economic reform package.

The Prime Minister's media advisor declined requests for a comment on the matter.

On Tuesday, Parliament's website quoted parliament member Azam Salah as saying that the Ministry of Finance and International Planning signed an agreement with donors in Washington this past March to remove government subsidies for fuel as a condition for international financial assistance. Salah expects fuel prices to surge during Ramadan. Fuel costs in Nigeria doubled after the Nigerian government ended all subsidies last year.

Parliament has called on the finance minister, as well as the ministers of Industry and International Planning to report to Parliament to answer questions regarding the matter.

Economist Ali Al-Wafi blamed the move on the government's insufficient financial resources.

Al-Wafi hasn't ruled out the possibility that the Yemeni government will fail to move forward with the expected decree.

"The government has been completely unable to achieve the aspirations of the Yemeni people. Removing the subsidies will be a difficult move for the government to make."

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Publication:Yemen Times (Sana'a, Yemen)
Geographic Code:7YEME
Date:Jun 20, 2013
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