The domestic debt accounted for
"The outstanding debt, domestic and external as verified is
"This debt overhang is a very inhibiting factor to securing fresh money, mobilising fresh money, fresh resources. It's a matter that we are seized with to see that its tackled and its going to be a process of course," he said.
Chinamasa said the public and publicly guaranteed external debt was
The private sector non-guaranteed external debt is
"There are no problems in terms of payments of this private sector non-guaranteed external debt. The private firms have been paying and honouring their obligations," he said, adding that the figures had just been included as part of the country's total debt obligation.
Among the creditors are multilateral institutions - AfDB which is owed
Debt overhang very inhibiting ... Samuel Undenge and
Creditors under the
Chinamasa said government was engaging its creditors with a view to get alleviation, get more loans and to clear the way to attract
"It's a long road, a very long road - maybe two, three years down the line," he said.
He said government had set out a framework to monitor debt obligations which was approved by cabinet two weeks ago.
"That framework will monitor how we incur debts and for what purpose those debts are incurred," he said, adding that debts towards infrastructural development would be prioritised.
A database had already been set up which would give information on the government's debt, interest rates, the terms of payment and status of payment.
It would also contain information on all borrowings that government guarantees for monitoring purposes as some of them ended up being liabilities, he said.
A statutory instrument to give legal standing to the debt management office would be introduced, and the office will manage all state debts, including those incurred by public state enterprises and local authorities.
"We also feel that the power to borrow should reside in a single authority. We should not have a situation where everybody is signing debt instruments all over and we only get to know about them when they are signed," he said.
Any borrowings by parastatals and local authorities would have to be cleared by the line ministry and the same will apply for private companies that require a government guarantee.
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