THE ECONOMY IS HEADING OUT OF TURBULENCE – GOVERNMENT

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Fredson Yamba - (right)

Lusaka, 23rd April, 2014. The Zambian Government is on course with all external debt obligations. This is consistent with the need to maintain credit worthiness and safeguard macroeconomic stability through debt sustainability.

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In addition, both external [adding the USD 1 Billion Sovereign Bond] and domestic debt levels remain below the international thresholds of 40% and 25%, respectively. To ensure that we continue on this path, the Ministry of Finance will continue to maintain high standards of financial and economic governance.

As at end of March, 2014, external debt stood at US $3.16 billion or 15.72% of GDP whilst domestic debt stood at K20.2 billion or approximately 16.57% of GDP.

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For the period under review, total external debt service (principal plus interest payments) stood at USD48.8 Million of which USD 8.9 Million was a payment made in January, USD 2.3 Million in February, and USD 37.7 Million in March, 2014.

During the same period, total domestic debt service (principal plus interest payments) stood at K2.6Billion of which K930.8 Million was a payment made in January, K887.3 Million in February, and K830.2 Million in March, 2014, respectively.

The economy is heading out of turbulence as attested by the positive response of the international investor community to issuance of the USD1 Billion Sovereign Bond. The ratings actions of International Rating Agencies, Standard & Poor’s and Fitch are also positive factors to consider .

Precision in the implementation of development programmes overseen by relevant Ministries, Provinces and other Spending Agencies will be cardinal in order to ensure that projects, whose progress was constrained by rains, are now speedily executed in conformity with the Governments objective of widespread job-creation and poverty reduction.

ISSUED BY:

Fredson Yamba
Secretary to the Treasury
MINISTRY OF FINANCE

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