Zambia agrees with IMF on $1.4B bailout package

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Zambia on Friday announced it had reached a staff-level agreement with the International Monetary Fund (IMF) for a $1.4billion bailout package.

Speaking to reporters, Finance Minister Situmbeko Musokotwane said that the package, subject to board approval, would be provided over the next three years, adding it will help revive the country’s ailing economy hit by the COVID-19 pandemic.

“The IMF program will provide much-needed fiscal space to Zambia and anchor our domestic economic program on transformation and job creation, human social development, environmental sustainability, and good governance,” Musokotwane said.

The $1.4billion comes in addition to a $1.3 billion Special Drawing Rights allocation from the fund received by the country in August.

The external debt of Zambia, a landlocked Southern African country, currently stands at around $14.5 billion with the country’s economy expected to grow by above 2% at the end of 2021.

Africa’s second top copper producer also aims to boost metal production from the current 800,000 tons per year to more than three million tons due to its growing demand in the booming electric motor vehicle manufacturing industry.

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