Prime Minister Abdalla Hamdok has mapped out a plan that he hopes would help the country settle its staggering $60 billion foreign debt bill this year.
The seasoned UN economist-turned-premier revealed plans to secure relief and deals at an upcoming Paris conference that could bring much-needed investment.
Hamdok took office as the head of a transitional government shortly after the 2019 ouster of President Omar al-Bashir whose three-decade rule was marked by economic hardship, deep internal conflicts, and biting international sanctions.
“We have already settled the World Bank arrears, those of the African Development Bank, and in Paris, we will be settling the International Monetary Fund arrears,” Hamdok said.
Arrears due to the African Development Bank were cleared through a bridging loan worth $425 million from Sweden, Britain and Ireland, while debts to the World Bank were paid off with a $1.1 billion bridging loan from the US.”
“Paris also is home to the Paris Club, our biggest creditors… and we will be discussing debt relief with them,” Hamdok said.
Sudan’s debts to the Paris Club, which includes major creditor countries, is estimated to make up around 38 percent of its total $60 billion foreign debt.
Hamdok and top Sudanese officials will be attending Monday’s Paris conference along with by French President Emmanuel Macron, and World Bank and IMF representatives.
The aim is to draw investments to Sudan including in the energy, infrastructure, agriculture and telecommunications sectors.
“We are going to the Paris conference to let foreign investors explore the opportunities for investing in Sudan,” Hamdok said.
“We are not looking for grants or donations.”