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Mexican president says IMF 'covers up' for corrupt governments

FILE PHOTO: Mexico's President Andres Manuel Lopez Obrador gestures as he speaks during the delivery of an investigation report with relatives of the 43 missing students of the Ayotzinapa Teacher Training College, marking the 6th anniversary of their disappearance, at the National Palace in Mexico City, Mexico September 26, 2020. REUTERS/Edgard Garrido/File Photo

MONTERREY, Mexico (Reuters) - Mexican President Andres Manuel Lopez Obrador said on Wednesday he respects the International Monetary Fund’s recommendations to Mexico but that it should “stop covering up for corrupt governments.”

On Tuesday, the IMF said Mexico should implement larger near-term fiscal support to alleviate the economic distress largely brought about by measures to contain the coronavirus pandemic.

The IMF recommended the government expand its welfare net and unemployment benefits, and lower interest rates. It also proposed tax reform to support spending in the medium-term.

Lopez Obrador on Wednesday said he respected the IMF but that international financial entities were no longer dictating economic policy in Mexico.

“All we ask ... is that they stop rescuing large corporations and that they rescue the people, that they stop covering up for corrupt governments,” he told his regular morning news conference, without providing details on any such potential cases.

The IMF declined to comment.

Reporting by Ana Isabel Martinez and Raul Cortes, writing by Laura Gottesdiener; Editing by Frank Jack Daniel and Steve Orlofsky