News & Analysis: Republic of Congo

African Health Ministers urge greater vigilance in COVID-19 fight

“African Health Ministers gathering for the resumed Seventieth session of the World Health Organization Regional Committee for Africa took stock this week of the region’s efforts in combatting the COVID-19 pandemic, with calls to step up vigilance and head off a possible resurgence of infections.”

via WHO Africa

Bargaining with Beijing: A Tale of Two Borrowers

“The fact that the Republic of Congo was worse off after rescheduling its debts with Beijing underscores the importance of exposing these deals to public scrutiny before they are finalized and building borrower country capacity to negotiate more favorable deals.”

via Center for Global Development

‘Health is a vital aspect of diplomacy,’ says Matshidiso Moeti WHO Africa director

“We know that health is a vital aspect of diplomacy. The impact of the COVID-19 pandemic goes far beyond health. Economies have been devastated and life as we know it has been upturned.”

via The Africa Report

‘It weighs you down,’ Congo COVID-19 survivor recounts

“Yaffa Fatoumata hoped that the fever and the sore throat she was suffering were just signs of a passing flu. However, when the symptoms persisted, the26-year-old legal assistant in Republic of the Congo’s Ministry of Communication decided to get tested for COVID-19. Two days after the test, her results turned out positive for the virus.”

via WHO Africa

External debt complicates Africa’s COVID-19 recovery

“For sub-Saharan African economies, interest repayments constitute the highest expenditure portion – and fastest-growing expenditure – of budgets.”

via Sierra Leone Telegraph

Fitch: Sub-Sahara African debt burdens rising faster than elsewhere

“Government debt burdens across sub-Saharan Africa are rising at a faster pace and to higher levels than elsewhere in emerging markets, heightening the risk of further rating downgrades and defaults, ratings agency Fitch warned.”

via Reuters

Africa and creditors wake up to debt dilemma

“In the tough years ahead, heavy debt burdens could push inflation up and pull growth down. Suppliers sink when the government stops paying its bills, and trade slows with uncertainty. Africa’s debt burden suddenly looms larger.”

via African Business Magazine

Sovereign Defaults Set to Hit Record in 2020

“Fitch rates five sovereigns at ‘CCC’ or below (excluding those in default): Gabon, Mozambique, Republic of Congo and Suriname at ‘CCC’ and Zambia at ‘CC’. The average annual default rate over 1995-2019 for ‘CCC/CC/C’ sovereigns was 26.5% and the cumulative five-year default rate was 38.5%.”

via Fitch Ratings

The World Bank provides $11.3 million to support the Republic of the Congo’s response to the coronavirus pandemic

“The World Bank approved $11.3 million in financing from the International Development Association to help the Republic of the Congo fight COVID-19 and respond to public health emergencies. The COVID-19 emergency response project has been launched to respond to the Congolese people’s public health needs and step up government prevention, disease surveillance, and early case detection and confirmation action.”

via World Bank

IMF Executive Board Approves Immediate Debt Relief for 25 Countries

“Executive Board approved immediate debt service relief to 25 of the IMF’s member countries under the IMF’s revamped Catastrophe Containment and Relief Trust (CCRT) as part of the Fund’s response to help address the impact of the COVID-19 pandemic.”

via IMF