Africa: Support to African Economies - Ethiopian PM Carries Africa Voice

He has pleaded on G20 members to provide an emergency financial assistant plan of about $150 billion to African countries.

Ethiopian Prime Minister Abiy Ahmed has called on the G20 to support African economies by reducing their debt and preparing a $150 billion emergency financial assistance plan. A "virtual" G20 summit is expected to take place today, March 26, 2020 to discuss an international response to the Covid-19 crisis. Ahead of the international meeting, Ethiopian Prime Minister Abiy Ahmed, in liaison with other African countries, made a three-point proposal on Tuesday, March 24, 2020 to help the continent. First of these proposals is the provision of $150 billion to support foreign currency reserves, but also businesses in difficulty, and ensure the most urgent payments. Provide a massive logistical and financial support for health systems in Africa through the World Health Organization (WHO), and Africa Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC), to strengthen public health delivery and emergency preparedness on the continent. Put in place a plan to restructure and erase part of the African public debt. This point on public debts will no doubt be the subject of discussions with creditors in African countries. Abiy Ahmed first requests the suspension of the payment of interest on public debts. The idea is to free up budgetary margins to finance the response to the pandemic, while debt service often exceeds the budget allocated to health. The Ethiopian Prime Minister then proposes the outright deletion of part of the debts of the poorest countries, and the transformation of the remainder into long-term loans, with a low interest rate, the repayment of which only started "At the end of a 10 year" grace period ". It should be noted that Prime Minister Abiy's proposals came on the heels of a meeting of Finance ministers of several African countries in Addis Ababa on Monday, March 23, 2020 during which they called for a coordinated response to mitigate the economic impact of the COVID-19 pandemic, "Africa needs an immediate emergency economic stimulus to the tune of $100 billion," read a press release by the UN Economic Commission for Africa that referred to decisions taken at the ministerial meeting.

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