Economy

Ghana is not HIPC – World Bank

The World Bank says Ghana is not a Highly Indebted Poor Country.

According to the Bretton Wood institution, countries that have graduated from the HIPC process cannot re-apply for debt relief under the HIPC Initiative.

Ghana was among the countries that graduated from the HIPC process and it did so in 2004 by reaching the Initiative’s completion point, it said in a statement.

The issue about Ghana being HIPC has been trending for some time now because of the nation’s total public debt stock which hit GHS263 billion in July 2020, about 68% of Gross Domestic Product.

The International Monetary Fund had forecast a debt-to-GDP ratio of about 76% by the close of this year.

But the World Bank explained that Ghana is listed in the list of HIPC countries because it once applied for a debt relief.

“The list of HIPC countries includes all countries that have either qualified or are potentially eligible for debt relief under the HIPC Initiative”.

The 39 countries that are included in the list are at different stages in the HIPC process, it pointed out.

So far, 36 countries have graduated from and exited the HIPC process.

These countries have benefitted from the comprehensive HIPC Initiative debt relief from all external creditors on an irrevocable basis and from debt relief under the complementary Multilateral Debt Relief Initiative (MDRI) by IDA, the IMF and the AfDB).

Meanwhile, Somalia has started the HIPC process but has still not fulfill the requirements to graduate from it.

Eritrea and Sudan are also potentially eligible HIPCs and have yet to start the debt relief process.