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Zambia to re-engage bondholders – minister

ZAMBIA will re-engage bondholders on how best to restructure the debt following the rejection of its request to defer interest payments, Finance minister Bwalya Ng’andu has said.

Dr Ng’andu said there was need to respect the sensitivities of all lenders.
He however said Government would push to come to the table with the lenders in an effort to agree how best the debt could be restructured.
Dr Ng’andu said it was in the interest of the lenders that the debt was restructured.
“It’s not in the interest of any lender to only worry about their particular case and ignore the cases of all the others,” he said.
Dr Ng’andu said Zambia would continue tirelessly working with all the creditors as they work on the process of restructuring the debt.
He said the issue of sustainability that creditors have been concerned with would continue being looked into.
Dr Ng’andu also maintained that the decision by the bondholders to reject Zambia’s request to defer interest payments would not trigger any payments from Government because all creditors have to be treated equally.
Zambia, under the Cure Period still has up to Wednesday next week to meet its obligation.
A Cure Period is a time frame of 30 to 90 days during which a company that has gone into technical default on a contractual payment is permitted to submit payment without further prejudice, and without being considered to have defaulted.
Bondholders last Friday rejected Zambia’s request to defer interest payments due on each of the bonds during the period from October 14, 2020 until April 14, 2021.
This means that the modifications and waivers, including the deferral of interest payments due on each of the bonds during the period from October 14, 2020 until April 2021 14, requested by Zambia will not be implemented.
Zambia missed payment of US$42.5 million coupon on one of its dollar denominated sovereign bonds last month.

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