US and Somalia sign debt relief agreement
US Ambassador to Somalia Donald Yamamoto and Somali Finance Minister Abdirahman Dualeh Beileh signed a bilateral agreement outlining ways to reduce and restructure the Horn country’s debt to three US state agencies.
Having reached the middle stage of its quest for debt cancellation in March this year, Somalia was declared favored by its donors for debt relief after implementing major steps in its economic reform by through the Heavily Indebted Poor Countries (HIPC) Initiative.
As the deal was signed on Sunday, it was noted that more effort would see Somalia reach the final stage known as the ‘completion point’, by which time the US will have canceled debts amounting to more than one billion dollars (about 108 billion shillings). .
Yamamoto said the United States commends Somalia for its economic reform efforts.
“Working through the debt relief process will enable Somalia to regain access to financial support from international financial institutions so that it can invest in poverty reduction and economic growth,” he said. he declares.
“The United States remains a committed partner of Somalia and is pleased to play a role in ensuring the economic success of the Somali people.
Mr. Beileh said that since the United States is a major member of the Paris Club, this agreement will lead to more agreements with other donors to whom Somalia is indebted.
The signing ceremony took place in the presence of Somalia’s new Prime Minister, Mohamed Hussein Roble, who was recently nominated and approved by parliament for the key post.