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UPDATE 1-Congo Republic weighing possible moratorium on debt payments -PM
October 10, 2017 / 6:28 PM / 2 months ago

UPDATE 1-Congo Republic weighing possible moratorium on debt payments -PM

(Adds details, debt figures)

BRAZZAVILLE, Oct 10 (Reuters) - Congo Republic is weighing the possibility of halting payments on its debt with private creditors as it seeks a bail-out with the International Monetary Fund, the prime minister said on Tuesday.

Congo’s economy, which is heavily dependent on revenues from oil exports, has been hit hard by the drop in global crude prices. The government is negotiating with the IMF for an assistance programme, but its debt has come under heavy scrutiny.

“We believe with the help of the IMF we will discuss with the traders,” Clement Mouamba told reporters in the capital Brazzaville. “We are going to consider the possibility of putting in place a moratorium.”

Following an evaluation mission last week, the IMF said Congo’s public and publicly guaranteed debt stood at 5.329 trillion CFA francs ($9.65 billion), or around 110 percent of GDP, though that figure did not include debt currently under litigation.

Mouamba on Tuesday said the external debt was 4.212 trillion CFA francs, including 1.242 trillion CFA francs he said was owed to “traders”.

Congo owed 2.201 trillion CFA francs to bilateral partners, 1.4 trillion CFA francs of that to China, Mouamba said. ($1 = 552.0000 CFA francs) (Reporting by Christian Elion; Writing by Joe Bavier; Editing by Matthew Mpoke Bigg)

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