G20 agrees to temporary debt standstill for poorest countries

G20 agrees to temporary debt standstill for poorest countries

The Group of 20 nations announced support for a temporary halt to debt payments by the world’s poorest nations as they struggle to deal with the coronavirus pandemic.

“We support a time-bound suspension of debt service payments for the poorest countries that request forbearance,” the G20 finance ministers and central bankers said in a communique following their virtual meeting, foreign media reported.

“All bilateral official creditors will participate in this initiative.” The group also called on private creditors, working through the Institute of International Finance, to participate in the initiative that extends to the world’s 76 poorest countries.

The International Monetary Fund and World Bank had been calling on the governments to provide six months of debt relief to the countries most in need.

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