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SECRETARY to the Treasury, Felix Nkulukusa, has attributed Zambia’s delay in signing a Memorandum of Understanding (MoU) with the official creditor committee to summer holidays in the western world.

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Zambia in June this year reached an agreement on a comprehensive debt treatment with its Official Creditors under the G20 Common Framework after several years of back and forth talks.

This, however, needs to be cemented through the signing of an MoU between the two parties.

Giving an update on how Government had gone in the negotiations, Mr Nkulukusa said the official creditor committee were on summer holidays hence the discussions were stalled.

“We are now negotiating a Memorandum of Understanding (MoU) with the official creditor committee and I know someone will ask a question as to why it has taken so long.

“Ordinarily, for our colleagues in the West, July and August are summer holidays, schools close and almost everyone goes on leave for their summer holidays,” he said yesterday at a Mid-Year Economic Performance and 2024-2026 Medium Term Budget Plan yesterday in Lusaka.

He, however said the negotiations had resumed.  “But we have resumed and we are having the discussions and we are hoping to reach the agreement very soon.

“Once we sign that MoU, then we will go and have bilateral agreements of official creditors signed based on the MoU that we have signed with the official creditor committee.” 

Mr Nkulukusa also said Government had scheduled several meetings next month to advance discussions on a comparable debt treatment to private creditors.

Meanwhile, Mr Nkulukusa said the stock of central government debt excluding publicly guaranteed external debt as at end of June 2023 increased to US$14.07 billion from US$13.96 billion as at end of December 2022.

And speaking earlier, Finance and National Planning Minister Situmbeko Musokotwane, projected that Zambia would attain real Gross Domestic Product growth rate of at least 4.7 percent over the Medium Term from 2024 to 2026.



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