Follow CAP on Social Media

Listen to the CAP Podcast

While There’s an Emerging Consensus on Chinese and Other Bilateral/Multilateral African Debt Relief, Dealing With Private Creditors is Going to be a Lot More Difficult

So much of the current discussion surrounding African debt relief focuses on the role of China and the traditional multilateral lenders like the World Bank and the IMF. While there’s no doubt these entities play an important role in this issue, the fact that African governments have significantly expanded their borrowing in recent years from private lenders, primarily in the form of eurobonds (see the light blue line in the chart above), is complicating the debt renegotiation process.

Vera Songwe, Executive Secretary of the United Nations Economic Commission for Africa (UNECA), along with a number of finance ministers across the continent have stated repeatedly that they want to do everything possible to avoid a default on that bond debt. A default similar to what Lebanon triggered in March would be potentially catastrophic in terms of the long-term economic impact and the dramatically higher borrowing costs that would ensue.

  • Get a daily email packed with the latest China-Africa news and analysis.
  • Read exclusive insights on the key trends shaping China-Africa relations.
  • Full access to the News Feed that provides daily updates on Chinese engagement in Africa and throughout the Global South.

China, Africa and the Global South... find out what’s happening.

Subscribe today for unlimited access.

What is The China-Africa Project?

Independent

The CAP is passionately independent, non-partisan and does not advocate for any country, company or culture.

News

A carefully curated selection of the day’s most important China-Africa stories. Updated 24 hours a day by human editors. No bots, no algorithms.

Analysis

Diverse, often unconventional insights from scholars, analysts, journalist and a variety of stakeholders in the China-Africa discourse.

Networking

A unique professional network of China-Africa scholars, analysts, journalists and other practioners from around the world.