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Debt that Belize owes foreign creditors is 85% of the national economy

Posted: Saturday, April 10, 2021. 10:21 am CST.

By Zoila Palma: Nations are struggling to manage debt and climate change as well as the impacts of the COVID-19   pandemic.

Many Government leaders are calling for green debt relief.

In an article published by the New York Times, it featured how countries like Belize, Fiji, and Mozambique are different countries facing some of the same challenges.

The countries owe ‘staggering’ amounts of money to several foreign leaders and are also facing climate risks and the COVID-19 pandemic continues to have severe economic impacts on them.

According to a new assessment by the World Bank and International Monetary Fund (IMF), the combination of debt, climate change, and environmental degradation “represents a systemic risk to the global economy that may trigger a cycle that depresses revenues, increases spending, and exacerbates climate and nature vulnerabilities.”

The IMF and the World Bank will meet and discuss with debtor countries, creditors, advocates, and rating agencies to figure out how to make new money available for what they call a green economic recovery.

“One of the countries at the crossroads of the climate and debt crises is Belize, a middle-income country on the Caribbean coast of Central America. Its foreign debt had been steadily rising for the last few years. It was also feeling some of the most acute effects of climate change: sea-level rise, bleached corals, coastal erosion. The pandemic dried up tourism, a mainstay of its economy. Then, after two hurricanes, Eta and Iota, hit neighboring Guatemala, floods swept away farms and roads downstream in Belize,” the article explained.

The debt that Belize owes to foreign creditors is equal to 85 percent of its entire national economy and the IMF has called it “unsustainable.”

Domestically, the Belize Government owes $1.323 billion in debt, the majority of which are in Treasury Bonds and Treasury Notes.

Тhе Іntеrnаtіоnаl Моnеtаrу Fund (ІМF) іn іtѕ rесеntlу соnсludеd Аrtісlе Fоur соnѕultаtіоn wіth Веlіzе аdvіѕеd thе gоvеrnmеnt tо wоrk tоwаrd rеduсіng thе dеbt tо GDР rаtіо, сurrеntlу аbоvе 130 реrсеnt.


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