Mozambique Misses Latest Loan Payment as Restructuring Stalls

MAPUTO (Capital Markets in Africa) – A state-run company in Mozambique skipped $134 million in payments on a government-guaranteed loan, the third time this year the southern African nation failed to meet its obligations as a standoff with creditors blocks debt restructuring talks.

Mozambique Asset Management, one of three state-owned companies that took out undisclosed loans worth about $2 billion, failed to make the payment due May 23, Rogerio Nkomo, a spokesman for the Finance Ministry, said by phone. The $535 million loan to MAM was arranged by Russia’s VTB Capital Plc and Palomar Capital Advisors Ltd., according to the Finance Ministry. Lazard Ltd. is leading the negotiations with MAM’s creditors.

“We’re in negotiation with the creditors,” Nkomo said on Friday. “Interest on arrears which accrues to successive defaults are subject to the same negotiation.”

The government had hoped to complete a restructuring of its commercial foreign debt by January, but a group of investors holding its 2023 Eurobond, which went into default at the start of the year, has refused to start formal negotiations until the government publishes an audit of the hidden loans. The discovery of the undisclosed borrowing prompted the International Monetary Fund to suspend aid to the country last year.

U.S. corporate investigation business Kroll Inc. completed the audit on May 12 after three delays, but the report has yet to be made public. MAM also missed a $134 million amortization payment on the loan a year ago.


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