If everything goes as planned, we should be able to settle this obligation in addition to rearranging a number of others. We currently owe 3 billion US dollars, according to Minister Albert Ramdin of Foreign Affairs, International Business, and International Cooperation (Bibis), based on the payments we have been able to make in the recent period. There were four major debts totaling around $4 billion in debt at the time of the takeover. The multilateral obligations owed to the banks here that carry out projects are unavoidable and must be settled. The second part consisted of debts with the Central Bank of Suriname and with the local business community, this concerns about 900 million, of which about 300 million has now been repaid in payments. In tens of millions, overdue contributions to international organizations have also been paid.
The third group of debt belonged to the commercial creditors and they have now been rescheduled. The bilateral debt or official debt is the 4th category. The debts have been rescheduled, so that’s settled. “Rescheduling means that you have to start with small amounts to pay and we have already done that”. The debt in terms of official debt, the debt with India and with China. Rescheduled with India and the first amounts have also been paid to India. China is well on its way. “I am quite optimistic that before the end of the year we will have completed the restructuring with China, which means that 3.9 billion has been redeployed, but a large part of that has now been paid.”
A few repayments have been made, so the debt must now be somewhere around 3 billion US dollars. “That means that 160% debt-to-GDP ratio has gone back down to 120%.” The intention of the IMF program was that it should be around 90% by the end of 2024. A healthy debt ratio is around 60%,” said Ramdin.