Washington: The shareholder governments of the International Monetary Fund (IMF) on Thursday agreed to a plan to subsidise assistance for countries hit by natural disasters by providing loans at below-market interest rates.
The decision follows the tsunami in which IMF pledged $1 billion in loans to help countries which suffered the tsunami disaster.
Sri Lanka has already indicated it will apply for lending under the fund's disaster facility to help its economy cope with the damage.
IMF has estimated it will require about $68 million to $98 million in new bilateral contributions from shareholders over the next five years to support the move.
In a statement, the IMF's board said France had immediately indicated a firm commitment to contribute funding, while other countries "stated readiness of their authorities to consider providing subsidy contributions."