Kyrgyz debt at 68.3% of GDP in 2015

By bne IntelliNews March 1, 2016

Kyrgyzstan’s national debt amounted to $3.81bn at the end of 2015, or 68.3% of GDP, up from 53.6% of GDP at the end of 2014, according to the latest figures by the Kyrgyz Finance Ministry.

The country’s debt burden increased by the significant depreciation of the Kyrgyz som by 28.87% y/y against the greenback in 2015, leading to a decline in debt servicing, which caused the accumulation of total debt as the country continued to borrow in to support growth and infrastructure spending in 2015. Debt grew by 4.9% y/y in 2015, the Finance Ministry said in a statement of February 4. The level of debt as a share of GDP matches the IMF’s forecast from September, when the IMF projected the country’s public debt to surge to 68% of GDP by the end of 2015, driven by currency depreciation as well as public investment in infrastructure. The government has set a target for public debt not to exceed 60% of GDP, which it failed to achieve when debt exceeded 64.1% of GDP in November.

The IMF also predicted that growing public investment would lead to a widening of budget deficit. The prediction was confirmed in June when the Finance Ministry announced its upward adjustments to its planned 2015 budget deficit at KGS25.1bn (€178.3mn), or 5.7% of GDP, up from KGS14.6bn, or 3.3% of GDP.

Foreign debt made up most of the national debt and stood at $3.606bn at the end of 2015, the figures show.

China’s Exim Bank stands as the country’s largest creditor with total outstanding credit worth $1.296bn at end-2015, followed by the World Bank’s International Development Association (IDA) with $639.3mn and the Asian Development Bank (ADB) with $575.4mn.

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