Adds details, background
LONDON, Sept 29 (Reuters) – Zambia hopes to reach a debt restructuring agreement with creditors by April and hopes to get nearly $1 billion of debt service relief from its requests to official and commercial creditors, Finance Minister Bwalya Ng’andu said on Tuesday.
One of the world’s largest copper producers, Zambia had been wrestling with growing public debt even before the coronavirus outbreak forced lockdowns around the world and cut demand for raw materials.
“We have engaged systematically with our official creditors for debt service suspension as well as our commercial creditors to seek similar debt service treatment, including the rescheduling of past due arrears accumulated throughout the year,” Ng’andu told creditors in a webcast.
“We hope to be in a position to reach an agreement in principle with our external creditor community on a debt treatment and with the IMF on a staff level agreement