(Reuters) -Zambia’s finance minister rejected a call from China for the World Bank and other multilateral lenders to join a restructuring of the country’s debt and warned that delays were holding up the economy, the Financial Times reported on Monday.
In an interview with the newspaper, Situmbeko Musokotwane said that “time is of the essence” to finish a restructuring of about $13 billion of external debt this year and signalled that China’s demand was a distraction from talks for reducing the loans.
“Discussions at higher levels like those just make our situation worse, because what we are looking for is urgent solutions, not discussions that may drag out the matter,” the report quoted Musokotwane as saying.
“China has always attached great importance to the Zambian debt issue,” Wang Wenbin, a Chinese foreign ministry spokesman, told a regular press briefing in Beijing on Monday. “Under the common framework of…