Former Finance Minister Katele Kalumba has agreed with other commentators
that Zambia is now headed for debt distress.
Dr. Kalumba says it is true that there is need for concern on the issue of debt in Zambia.
In an interview with QTV News by telephone Dr. Kalumba said he also knows that government has realized this fact that there is a problem of debt distress.
Dr. Kalumba, who was Finance Minister under the Frederick Chiluba MMD government, said this explains why government has also announced economic austerity measures.
He said the current debt stock is too high and needs working out restructuring modalities.
Dr. Kalumba observed that Zambia’s debt portfolio has now become a shock to its economy especially that it has been contracted in a short period of time.
He stated that his prayer therefore is that government will be strict with expenditure and will maintain commitment to the announced austerity measures.
Dr. Kalumba further hoped that government will not contract any further debt until it reaches some sort of agreement with the International Monetary Fund (IMF) on the stabilization measures.
He is also of the view that the issue of single sourcing in the refinancing the first Eurobond of US$750 million does not matter but that what matters is the establishment of the total debt deadlock.