THE International Monetary Fund (IMF) says it is currently assessing a request from the Zambian government for a bailout package expected to help with the country’s reform process.

An IMF team that is visiting the country following Zambia’s request for assistance has since met President Edgar Lungu and other top government officials as part of the assessment process.

“The Zambian authorities have formally requested a financing arrangement with the International Monetary Fund (IMF) to support their reform efforts. The Fund is currently assessing this request,” the IMF has stated in a brief statement.

“As part of this assessment, and following an invitation from the Zambian authorities, Mr. Abebe Aemro Selassie, Director of the IMF’s African Department, and Mr. Alex Segura-Ubiergo, mission chief for Zambia are visiting Lusaka during December 7-9 for high-level discussions.”

Zambia has defaulted on its bond interest payments and has missed the chance for suspension of payment of its obligations after bondholders rejected a request for a moratorium.

This new development concerning a request for an IMF package seems to be a realization by the government that only such bailout would help put the country back on track economically.