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Sudan expects 80% of its foreign debt be written off in June

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Prime Minister Hamdok speaks to the media after his return from Paris Conference on 19 May 2021 (ST photo)May 19, 2021 (KHARTOUM) - Sudanese Prime Minister Abdallah Hamdok has expected the creditor nations would cancel 80 per cent of $60 billion debt Sudan owes them next June.

Hamdok arrived in Khartoum on Wednesday night after his participation in an international conference organized by President Emmanuel Macron to remove Sudan’s foreign debt and attract investments, with the participation of about 40 countries and a global front.

Speaking to the press after his return to Khartoum, he said the Paris conference enabled his country to fulfil the fifth and final and final condition before reaching the Decision Point thanks to a 1.5 billion bridge loan from France to clear IMF arrears.

The Sudanese government has already fulfilled 4 conditions under the Highly Indebted Poor Countries (HIPC) programme which provides debt relief for low-income nations.

"So, we have fulfilled all conditions (for debt forgiveness), and by the end-June 2021, we will reach the Decision Point," he said.

"We expect to be exempt from about 80% of the debt, equivalent to 44-46 billion dollars," he further added.

After the French loan Sudan has reached the Completion Point, which qualifies the east African country for debt relief under the HIPC Initiative, and for debt relief under the Multilateral Debt Relief Initiative (MDRI) from the World Bank’s IDA and the African Development Fund (AfDF), together with beyond-HIPC assistance from the IMF.

Paris Club creditors are also expected to provide further beyond-HIPC assistance at the Completion Point.

Sudan’s $60-billion debt is the biggest to be treated under the HIPC to date.

Meeting with Saudi minister

Before t return to Khartoum, Hamdok met with Saudi Finance Minister Mohammed bin Abdullah Al-Jadaan to discuss negotiations with Sudan’s creditor countries that are not members of the Paris Club.

The Saudi government has pledged to work jointly with Khartoum to tackle Sudan’s debit with countries outside the Paris Club including China, Kuwait, the Emirates and Japan.

Also, China has pledged to raise Sudan’s economic support during the upcoming G20 meeting which will be held next October in Rome.

(ST)

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