| 15 July 2024, Monday |

World Bank releases $100 mln for Zambia amid delays in debt restructuring

The World Bank announced on Wednesday that it is releasing $100 million to Zambia amid significant delays in its debt restructuring operations.

Zambia received a $275 million grant from the World Bank in October to aid in its recovery from the COVID-19 pandemic, the fallout from the war in Ukraine, and its debt issue.

Zambia became the first African country to default in the COVID-19 era in 2020, but the restructuring of its external debts of almost $15 billion with creditors including China and Eurobond holders has been greatly delayed.

“Zambia urgently needs debt relief to restore medium-term debt sustainability and attract the new investment needed for growth and jobs,” World Bank President David Malpass said in a statement.

“I remain deeply concerned by the slow pace of the creditors’ committee and the impact of the delays on growth and poverty,” he added.

Zambia has continued to implement agreed structural policies to achieve macroeconomic stability even as its official bilateral creditors delay discussing and finalizing debt treatment for the country under the G20’s Common Framework, the statement said.

Zambia has agreed to the principles of debt restructuring with its creditors and is focused on signing an agreement on its terms with them by the end of March, President Hakainde Hichilema said on Tuesday.

  • Reuters