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African Development Bank Helping Zimbabwe to Clear $601 million Loan Arrears

FILE: Finance Minister Patrick Chinamasa meeting with African Development Bank officials in Harare. (VOA)

The African Development Bank (AfDB) has agreed to help Zimbabwe in clearing its $601 million arrears to the bank, a move that will reduce the nation's loans with multi-lateral institutions.

Finance Minister Patrick Chinamasa told a news conference that the AfDB has agreed to help Zimbabwe offset its debt arrears.

Sibry Tapsoda, an AfDB executive leading the bank’s mission to discuss Harare’s proposals to clear its arrears to the International Monetary Fund, the World Bank and the AfDB, said the bank mobilized resources to help Zimbabwe clear its arrears.

Zimbabwe owes international money lending institutions and countries in the Paris Club close to $10 billion and has been failing to service its loans for over a decade now.

An IMF delegation that was in the country last week to review its Staff Monitored Program urged Harare to strengthen its economic reforms to enable it to attract investors, create jobs and clear its huge debt, among other things.

Chinamasa said Zimbabwe hopes that its proposal to clear its debt would be accepted by the foreign creditors at a meeting that would be held on the sidelines of the World Bank annual general meeting in the Peru capital, Lima, next month.

Zimbabwe has been failing to access fresh lines of credit from multi-lateral institutions because it is has not been servicing its debts with its international lending institutions since 1999.

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