A Jordanian protester holds a sigh reading in arabic, "stay away from my pocket" as others chant slogans during an anti-austerity rally, on June 6, 2018, in front of the Labor Union offices in Amman. / AFP / AHMAD GHARABLI
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Jordan will ask the IMF to give it more time to implement reforms, after some of the largest protests in years showed pushing the debt-burdened country beyond its means risked major instability, officials said.A week of rare protests has brought down the government and forced King Abdullah to effectively suspend tax rises -- a key part of fiscal consolidation plans pushed by the IMF to reduce Jordan's large public debt.The government is unlikely to abandon the IMF program, but officials believe its hasty implementation sparked the protests.IMF officials in the Middle East were not immediately available to comment.After an IMF arrangement that brought some fiscal stability, Jordan agreed in 2016 to a more ambitious three-year program of long-delayed structural reforms.Many in official circles believe the IMF and the outgoing government gravely miscalculated the potential risks of accelerating the economic reforms.
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