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White Paper on “The Politics of African Debt Restructuring”

Many debt-distressed African countries will have successfully restructured their most unaffordable loans and be better placed to attract a new wave of sustainability capital through private investment by 2024, says a new report from special intelligence advisory Pangea Risk. The report argues that debt transparency, sound fiscal and monetary governance, and candid bilateral relations with creditors are the primary political indicators of effective debt treatments, while multilateral debt relief initiatives, such as the G-20’s Common Framework, fail African countries. Angola is cited as an example of the model for African countries charting a way out of debt, while Zambia and Mozambique provide “worst case” examples. The authors predict that at least three major African sovereigns will successfully restructure their debt in 2023 in order to avoid a default scenario by 2024. “These are Ghana, Kenya, and Nigeria, which each in their own way are seeking a bespoke treatment of their obligations,” they write. Kenya and Ghana are predicted to achieve successful debt restructurings through extended maturities on foreign currency obligations, domestic loan swaps in exchange for concessional finance, and limited haircuts for some bondholders.