Green party leader Peter Sinkamba has warned of severe consequences if Zambia fails to repay the $3 billion euro bond loan it procured.
Speaking when he featured on the Let the People Talk programme on radio phoenix today, Sinkamba also said the country was already in the defaulting mode in terms of loan repayment.
He further said that when he becomes president, he will delegate most of his international trips to avoid huge costs to the nation.
“The implication is quiet dire. You know we have borrowed Eurobond worth about $3 billion and that money is due for repayment I think by 2022. I think the first lot, the $750 million is due that time and then a couple of year later, $1 billion and another two years, a remaining $1.25 million. The problem is that if we do not have that money when it is due, the implication for the nation is extremely severe. Already we are in the defaulting mode in terms of some of these loans and when you start defaulting, it becomes difficult for you to access more money on the market,” Sinkamba said.
“So the implications are that if we fail to strike a deal with IMF on the $1.3 billion dollars that we are looking for to cushion the impact of loan repayment, we may face a serious problem come 2021, 2022. so we really need someone to structure a program which is going to assist us and you see the trouble is, you cannot access any other Euro bond related monies when you don’t have an IMF package,” he said.
And Sinkamba said once he becomes president of Zambia, he would not make a lot of international trips but rather delegate.
“Even when I become president, unless it is very important that I must travel, otherwise I will just delegate our ambassadors, our High Commissioners where ever they are to push that. We used to have that in the time of president [Michael Sata] and also president Banda. I remember there were times I would be at the UN or maybe I am at the AU in Addis Ababa where that time we had [Susan] Sikaneta representing the Zambian government instead of delegations traveling from here. So its possible that you can have representations from the AU, the UN without necessarily traveling,” said Sinkamba.