USA / CHILE – Chile accepted today the International Monetary Fund’s (IMF) offer of a one-year Short-term Liquidity Line (SLL) arrangement, amounting to about US$3.5 billion (145 percent of quota, or the equivalent of SDR 2.529 billion, the maximum amount under this arrangement). The authorities also notified the Fund on their decision to exit the current two-year Flexible Credit Line (FCL) arrangement ( see Press Release No. 20/227).
This is the first-ever arrangement under the SLL, which was established on April 21, 2020 ( see Press Release No. 20/180).  The facility is designed to be a liquidity backstop for members with very strong policy frameworks and fundamentals that face potential, moderate, short-term balance of payments needs. Recipients can draw from the liquidity line at any time that balance of payment needs arise. Disbursements are not phased nor tied to compliance with policy targets as in regular IMF-supported programs. As envisaged under the SLL policy, the Chilean authorities plan to treat the SLL as precautionary.
Following a swift and wide-ranging policy response to the COVID-19 pandemic, Chile’s economic recovery is well-entrenched. The authorities have successfully recalibrated macroeconomic policies and built comfortable liquidity buffers, while maintaining macroeconomic stability and fiscal sustainability. The SLL will complement existing buffers, support resilience, and provide a confidence signal on Chile’s very strong fundamentals and policies.
Chile qualifies for the SLL given its very strong economic fundamentals and institutional policy frameworks, a sustained track record of implementing very strong policies, and the authorities’ commitment to maintain very strong policies in the future. Qualification criteria for the SLL are the same as those for the FCL, which facilitates the transition between the two facilities.
Following the executive board’s discussion on Chile, Bo Li, deputy managing director and acting chair, issued the following statement:
“I am delighted that Chile has accepted the Fund’s offer of an SLL, becoming the first user of this special and innovative instrument.
“Chile has very strong fundamentals and policy frameworks, and a sustained track record of implementing policies that have supported the country’s resilience in the face of large shocks. The very strong policy frameworks are anchored in a long-standing structural fiscal balance rule, credible inflation-targeting with a free-floating exchange rate, and a sound financial system supported by effective regulation and supervision.
“Following an impressive vaccination campaign and an effective and well-coordinated policy response, the Chilean economy has rapidly recovered from the fallout of the Covid-19 pandemic. The progress made in recalibrating macroeconomic policies and building comfortable liquidity buffers facilitates the successful transition to the SLL, which will further support Chile’s external resilience by providing a revolving liquidity backstop in foreign exchange.”