UK facing £17.5bn bill to boost IMF firepower

UK taxpayers could be forced to contribute a further £17.5bn to the International Monetary Fund after it asked member countries for an extra £390bn to stabilise the global economy.

The International Monetary Fund says it needs to increase the size of its bailout fund from roughly £260bn to around £650bn, part of which will be used to bail out debt-stricken eurozone members.

Reports state chancellor George Osborne is ready to put the IMF’s request to MPs for approval.

At a summit in December, most European leaders agreed to increase the IMF’s resources, but the UK refused to commit to the agreement.