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. Last Updated: 07/27/2016

IMF, Paris Club Slammed for No Debt Write-Off

LONDON — A report presented to the Parliamentary Assembly of the Council of Europe, a human rights watchdog, said that sovereign creditors have failed Russia and also criticized International Monetary Fund policies in the country.

The report to the council's Committee on Economic Affairs and Development said creditors belonging to the Paris Club, who are owed $48.6 billion by Russia, of which $38.7 billion is inherited from the Soviet era, should match the terms offered by private sector banks.

"They [the council committee] at the same time regret that the Paris Club of international creditors has been unwilling to restructure Russian debts inherited from the Soviet Union on terms similar to those granted by their peers of the London Club of creditors," the report said.

Private sector creditors agreed last year to restructure $37 billion of debt with a 36.5 percent write-off and the balance in 10- and 30-year Eurobonds.

Germany, which is owed 40 percent of the total sovereign debt, has been especially intransigent, saying that Russia, whose economy is growing rapidly, does not need debt relief.

The report to the Council of Europe, which was released on the council's web site, covered the role of the development bank for Central and Eastern Europe, the European Bank for Reconstruction and Development, and endorsed its activities.

The Council of Europe will debate it next week.

The committee's report also criticized the IMF's role in Russia, saying the fund has been too strict.

"Furthermore, they [the committee] consider the IMF position vis-a-vis Russia unjustifiably rigid when compared to those adopted as regards countries in similar difficulties, such as Argentina, Turkey and Ukraine," the report said.