The International Monetary Fund (IMF) is an organization of 189 countries, working to foster global monetary cooperation, secure financial stability, facilitate international trade, promote high employment and sustainable economic growth, and reduce poverty around the world.
The IMF’s primary purpose is to ensure the stability of the international monetary system—the system of exchange rates and international payments that enables countries (and their citizens) to transact with each other. The IMF has been instrumental to the growth of international trade. It acts as the reservoir of the currencies of all the member countries. A borrowing country can borrow the currency of another country out of this reservoir. It extends loans in foreign exchange to the member countries for financing the current transactions. It also provides technical advice on monetary and fiscal matters. It conducts research studies and publishes them. This multilateral assistance helps members in solving their problems in trade, thereby promoting international trade.
Other roles of IMF include:
- To promote international monetary cooperation
- To facilitate the expansion and balanced growth of international trade
- To promote exchange stability
- To assist in the establishment of a multilateral system of payments
- To give confidence to members by making the general resources of the Fund temporarily available to them under adequate safeguards
- To shorten the duration and lessen the degree of disequilibrium in the international balances of payments of members