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IMF chief Lagarde praises Jamaica's leadership in making economic reforms, spurring growth

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KINGSTON, Jamaica - The managing director of the International Monetary Fund is expressing confidence in Jamaica's growth prospects and praising the island's political leadership.

During a three-day visit to the Caribbean country, Christine Lagarde said Friday that the island's government has displayed "extraordinary leadership" in making economic reforms. She says Jamaica has so far met all the objectives of a four-year, $930 million loan package with the IMF.

Over the past year, Jamaica has passed four IMF tests in a row without shortfalls. Lagarde says that's an "exceptionally strong record by IMF standards." As a result, she says the economic outlook is improving.

The island entered into its latest arrangement with the IMF last year after a 2010 deal fizzled out.

Jamaica has long had one of the world's slowest growing economies.

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