WASHINGTON, Oct. 26 (Xinhua) -- Spain has made important progress in reforming its financial sector, and still need to beef up its reform efforts, the International Monetary Fund (IMF) said on Friday.
"All deadlines established in the Memorandum of Understanding (MOU), (which is) agreed between the Spanish and European authorities, have been met. It will be important to maintain the momentum as challenging steps lie ahead," the Washington-based global lender said in a preliminary report which assessed the nation's financial reform.
Financial market conditions have improved since the announcement of the European Central Bank's Outright Monetary Transactions program, though they remained fragile, said the IMF.
The institution also said that the country's economy and banks faced headwinds.
An IMF staff team visited Madrid from Oct. 15 to Oct. 26 for the first independent monitoring mission of the financial sector as Europe is giving a financially helping hand to Spain's bank recapitalization, the IMF added.
The European Union has agreed a 100-billion-euro (about 128 billion U.S. dollars) bailout program for Spain's banks this summer.