Zambia says international bond deal can't be implemented at this time

20 November 2023 - 11:37
By Rachel Savage and Bhargav Acharya and Karin Strohecker
Zambia's External Bondholder Steering Committee said it was deeply concerned with recent developments and frustrated by the current process. Stock photo.
Image: 123RF/ ppart Zambia's External Bondholder Steering Committee said it was deeply concerned with recent developments and frustrated by the current process. Stock photo.

Zambia suffered a major setback in its debt restructuring efforts after the government said on Monday a planned deal to rework $3bn (R55.29bn) of Eurobonds could not be implemented at this time due to objections from official creditors, including China.

Zambia and the country's official creditor committee (OCC) had been at odds over whether the deal struck with a group of bondholders in late October offered comparable debt relief from bilateral as well as commercial lenders.

“The OCC, through its co-chairs, concluded that Comparability of Treatment would not be achieved in the Base Case scenario, although would be achieved in the Upside Case scenario,” the government said in a statement, referring to a two-pronged approach that foresaw different levels of debt relief depending on the country's economic performance.

The country's External Bondholder Steering Committee said it was deeply concerned with recent developments and frustrated by the current process.

The country's international bonds dropped nearly 2 cents following the statement, Tradeweb data showed.

Reuters