IMF stops funding to Afghanistan, including $460 M next week, amid global 'lack of clarity'

Decision comes amid pressure from Biden administration to ensure reserves, known as Special Drawing Rights, don't reach Taliban.

Updated: August 19, 2021 - 8:07am

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The International Monetary Fund will block Afghanistan from accessing emergency reserves – including $460 million next week –  following the Taliban’s take over of the country.

The decision comes amid pressure from the Biden administration to make sure the reserves, known as Special Drawing Rights, do not reach the Taliban, according to The New York Times.

The Taliban took over Afghanistan on Sunday after the government collapsed as U.S. military forces completed their withdrawal after 20 years in the country.

An IMF spokesperson said Afghanistan now cannot access the funds because of the "lack of clarity within the international community regarding recognition of a government in Afghanistan."

The spokesperson said that uncertainty will also prevent the country from accessing other IMF resources. 

The IMF was established after World War II to help stabilize the global economy and is funded with contributions from its 190 member nations, with the United States as its largest shareholder.

The organization approved a $650 billion allocation of currency reserves earlier this month as part of an program to help developing countries with the pandemic. The reserve assets are divided among countries, with Afghanistan set to receive its share next week, The Times also reports.