Mozambique government debt expected to exceed 140% of GDP

30 March 2017

The public debt of Mozambique is expected to have exceeded 140% of the country’s gross domestic product (GDP), said Mozambican economist João Mosca, during a conference organised by the Africa Intelligence Monitor and AIP Foundation (Portuguese Industrial Association).

The economist cited calculations that the public debt level has already surpassed the 130% estimated by international credit rating agencies, having approached if not exceeded 140% of GDP, “which is an extremely high level.”

Mosca pointed out that the last two coupon payments on loans contracted by public companies were not paid – the first for US$59.8 million and the second for US$119.2 million – and therefore “the Mozambican credit rating sank further into the category of junk.”

Saying it was difficult to make an optimistic speech on the economic reality of Mozambique, the professor said the country has inefficient public services and lack of access to credit, noting “corruption at every level” as a key issue for companies along with a “weak and inefficient state with strong centralised decision-making in the central bodies.”

Mosca also said that the concentration of the state’s attention on major investments has the effect of increasing the external dependence of Mozambique, embodied in the fact that 93% of the investment made in the country comes from abroad and the state budget has a 30% dependence on cooperation. (macauhub)