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Zambia’s Debt Demand Shows Limits of China’s Checkbook Diplomacy

Zambia's President Edgar Lungu shakes hands with China's President Xi Jinping before their bilateral meeting at the Great Hall of the People on September 1, 2018. Nicolas ASFOURI / POOL / AFP

Zambia’s request for blanket debt-service suspension from creditors edges the country closer to default and highlights the limitations of China’s debt diplomacy.

The government has decided to ask all external creditors to agree to debt service suspension on the same terms, Zambia’s finance ministry said in a statement on October 13.

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