Spain contributes towards Somalia's debt relief
NAIROBI, Kenya - The government of Spain has joined other countries in the ongoing program of contributing towards Somalia's debt relief, which has been ongoing for a while, as part of the international community's commitment to helping the Horn of Africa nation stabilize.
On 15 December, a circular from Madrid indicated, the Council of Ministers of Spain approved a contribution of
4,074,536.54 euros to the Specific Account for Somalia of the International Monetary Fund [IMF].
Somalia owes international lenders over $5bn but due to its inability to pay, several international actors have joined in the plan to help it settle the debt so that it can go for more. Recently, it received a waiver from the IMF and the World Bank, which are major lenders.
This contribution, Madrid said, "strengthens Spain’s commitment with the political stability and the economic progress of Somalia, whose authorities have made a significant effort during the last few years to reestablish its economic and financial relations with the international community".
These efforts bore fruits, and in March 2020 Somalia joined the IMF’s Heavily Indebted Poor Country Initiative, which allows the African country to access debt relief. In December 2019, the IMF adopted the funding package for Somalia, with a proposal that included debt relief by the IMF´s member States.
"The participation of Spain in this program follows the line of the Council of Minister's decision of 2007 to cancel the debt of heavily indebted poor countries contracted before 2004," Spain added in the circular, which is a big relief to Somalia.
Spain announced its intention to do this contribution of over 4 million euros during the Somalia Partnership Forum held in Mogadishu on 7 December
2020. With this contribution, Spain strengthens its commitment to Somalia in
a global situation of financial hardship due to the pandemic.
"Spain leads the European Union’s Naval Force in the Horn of Africa, Atalanta Operation, against piracy and that protects ships of the World Food Program and AMISOM, the African Union Mission in Somalia," the statement added.
Furthermore, Spain is one of the leading contributors to the European Union Training Mission to
Somalia, whose aim is to provide military training to Somali Armed Forces, which are set to assume security responsibilities in the country from next year.