News In Brief

Dominican Republic halts negotiations with IMF

The government has broken off negotiations with the International Monetary Fund after refusing to comply with the IMF's request that gasoline prices be raised. Riots erupted last month over food price increases requested by the fund.

President Salvador Jorge Blanco said the decision announced Thursday could mean a final break with international creditors at a time when the country badly needs to renegotiate its $2.4 billion foreign debt.

Mr. Blanco rejected the IMF's condition that gasoline and other petroleum products be shifted to what is called the ''parallel'' rate of exchange of nearly three Dominican pesos to one US dollar, compared to the ''official'' rate of one peso to one dollar.

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