The African Development Bank (AfDB) has lifted sanctions that were imposed on Zambia after confirming receipt of the US$1.4 million debt owed to the bank.

Last week, AfDB announced that it had imposed sanctions on Zambia for non-payment of a US$1.4 million debt, which the government assured would be settled in due course.

Zambia joined Zimbabwe, Somalia and Sudan on the list of blacklisted countries.

The Ministry of Finance had stated that government’s default should not be a cause for alarm or panic by any stakeholder.

“Government wishes to inform the nation that the information circulating on social media to the effect that the AfDB has put Zambia under sanctions for failing to repay loans should not cause any panic. Government acknowledges that the AfDB Group did write to the Ministry of Finance, yesterday, December 23, 2019, to inform the Ministry that as of yesterday (Monday) the Bank had not received full payment in respect of Bank Group bills. The Bank Group added that, in accordance with the Bank Group policy on loan arrears recovery, it wished to inform government that sanctions had been imposed on December 15, 2019. It was further stated that the Bank Group counted on government’s prompt action for the timely settlement of the amounts due to enable the lifting of sanctions,” stated the Ministry.

And in a letter dated December 26, 2019, addressed to Ministry of Finance public debt management director Jacob Mkandawire, the AfDB accounting division manager acknowledged receipt of the payment and lifted the sanctions.

“We are pleased to acknowledge receipt pf your payment in respect of Bank Group bill. Accordingly, sanctions have been lifted,” read the letter.