Seventy percent of Ghana’s external debt as at the end of December 20202 was denominated in US dollar, figures from the Finance Ministry has revealed.

This was followed by Euro-denominated debt (17.3%) and Chinese Yuan-denominated debt (3.8%).

According to the figures, total external debt service payments for the year 2020 was GH₵14.66 billion.

This comprise of principal repayments of GH₵8.57 billion and interest payment and other charges of GH₵5.97 billion.

The total debt service show an increase of 26.2 percent compared to 2019 and 99 percent, compared to 2017.  

The stock of external debt as at end December 2020 stood at GH₵141.8 billion (US$24.1billion) representing 37.0 percent of Gross Domestic product and an increase of 25.8% compared to 2019. However, from 2017 to 2020, the size of the external debt relative to the public debt portfolio has declined from 55.5% to 48.6%.

The figures showed that the share of commercial debt to the external debt portfolio had increased significantly over the period, mainly because of the increase in Eurobonds.

Interestingly, the share of commercial debt increased from 36.8% in 2017 to 51.1% by 2020.

The share of multilateral debt however declined from 37.2% in 2017 to 33.5% by 2020.

In 2020, government signed 26 new loans with a total commitment value of US$1.84 billion in addition to a US$3 billion Eurobond isssued in February 2020.

Public debt stock hit GH₵291.63bn in December 2020

Ghana’s gross public debt, as at the end of December 2020, stood at GH₵291.63 billion (US$50.83 billion).

This represented 76.1% of GDP and an increase of 33.6% compared to the stock in 2019.

The external debt was estimated at GH₵141.80 billion (US$24.7 billion). This represented 37.0% of GDP.

The domestic debt was GH₵149.83 billion (US$26.1 billion). This was equivalent to 39.1 percent of GDP.

The total stock of debt issued in support of the Financial Sector clean up however stood at GH₵16.3 billion as at end December 2020.