Joseph Stiglitz, Kevin P. Gallagher: IMF surcharges: A lose-lose policy for global recovery

The IMF has imposed significant surcharges on countries that have had to undertake large borrowings and are unable to pay their debts back quickly. These surcharges are pro-cyclical financial penalties imposed on countries precisely at a time when they can least afford them. They worsen potential outcomes for both the borrowing country and its investors, with gains accruing to the IMF at the expense of both. This transfer of resources to the IMF affects not just the level of poverty, health, education, and overall well-being in the country in crisis, but also its potential growth.

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